WASHINGTON — Much has been made from the varieties of gamers the Rangers focused within the offseason, in addition to how the group has emphasised its dedication to enjoying a grittier type than in years previous.
What hasn’t acquired almost as a lot consideration is the best way particular person gamers have spoken concerning the drastic change within the vibe surrounding the Blueshirts in comparison with years previous.
Every preseason, there’s an abundance of cliché quotes that pour out of each NHL group about how organizations are on course, groups are meshing collectively and the feel-good environment in every locker room.
For the Rangers, nevertheless, gamers have been forthright about there being a completely different feeling below new head coach Gerard Gallant and common manager-president Chris Drury — significantly in distinction to former bench boss David Quinn’s three-year regime.
“There’s an energy that I don’t think has necessarily been there the last however many years,” Chris Kreider mentioned Tuesday earlier than the group left for the Wednesday night time season opener in opposition to the Capitals. “There’s always a good energy in training camp, but this team feels different. It feels great.”
Kreider, who was appointed assistant captain together with 5 others, harped on the Rangers’ purpose of with the ability to play any type this season. No matter who the Rangers play, Kreider mentioned the group is aware of it’s able to getting up ice, creating probabilities and odd-man rushes.
Those are definitely points of the sport that Quinn harassed previously, however it seems that the Rangers have a entire new model of motivation.
“We’ve got that desire to play low and the desire to get pucks to the net that we might not have had the last couple of years,” Kreider mentioned. “We can grind it out, if and when we need to. I think we’ve got a really good blend [of players], up and down throughout the entire group.”
Maybe it has to do with the brand new make-up of the lineup, which had its backside six utterly reworked with heavy-hitting gamers that play a grinding type. The Rangers might now feel they’re able to enjoying a hard-nosed recreation. Or, new administration has simply given the group a possibility to start out contemporary.
“I don’t think it’s like line brawls or anything like that,” Ryan Strome joked of the Rangers’ new type Wednesday morning. “I assumed there have been occasions within the preseason the place we noticed a number of the guys go on the market and alter the tempo, tone of the sport. I feel it’s a trickle-down impact, you see these guys do it and it trickles via the lineup.
“I don’t think it’s a big new thing, you’re going to see, I just think it’s more or less just we’ve got guys with a little bit of bite and they’re going to go out there and have a little bit more pushback. Like I said, it’ll trickle down.”
Whatever prompted such vital change to the group’s angle, the Rangers have proclaimed that issues are different now. It’s but to be seen if the Blueshirts are different, too.
“I think we’re in such a good place right now, compared to last season,” Strome mentioned. “Just really excited to get things going. The anticipation has been all summer long and the preseason felt like forever. So just glad it’s here with the new guys and we’re ready to go with this group.”