Feb. 10, 2013; Buffalo, NY, USA; Buffalo Sabres defenseman Robyn Regehr (24) waits for a faceoff during the third period against the Boston Bruins at First Niagara Center. Boston won 3-1. Mandatory Credit: Timothy T. Ludwig-USA TODAY Sports

The Need For A Minute Eating Defenseman

The Rangers right now are getting by with playing Matt Gilroy as their 6th defenseman and it’s getting mixed results. Some nights he’s fine, other nights he isn’t. It’s no secret the Rangers need a depth defenseman not just balance out their defense, but to eat some minutes.

This is the Kings defenseman average TOI a game last year during the playoffs:

Drew Doughty 26:08

Willie Mitchell 25:19

Rob Scuderi 21:44

Slava Voynov 19:31

Matt Greene 16:05

Alec Martinez 14:28

No let’s take a look at the Rangers this season:

Marc Staal 23:46

Ryan McDonagh 24:32

Dan Girardi 24:36

Michael Del Zotto 23:12

Anton Stralman 15:49

Matt Gilroy 9:50

Steve Eminger 5:52

Stu Bickel 4:55

See the difference? We have four defenseman averaging over 20 minutes a game simply because we don’t have a sixth defense capable of playing well over 10 minutes a night. Overplaying our defenseman was one reason why I think this team fell short last season. Hopefully Glen Sather and management realize this and before the trade deadline they go out and get someone. The picture above is Robyn Regehr who may become a viable option in the near future. There are also many other possibilities but the Rangers need somebody.

The Rangers can probably get by without six legitimate defenseman in the short term, but the team cannot survive like this the whole season and through the playoffs. They’ll get overrun eventually. The sooner this issue is addressed, the better.

Be sure to follow me on twitter @Bluelinestation.

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