It is a scary moment in the world of the New York Rangers when depth is no longer the key issue plaguing the team. Finally, for the first time in a long time, the Rangers bottom six core group of players is doing the job it is supposed to be doing. They provide penalty killers, they score when they’re asked, and they frustrate the opposing team’s top line.
I’m going to start with the bottom three, the fourth line that consists of Brian Boyle-Dominic Moore-Derek Dorsett. This has been one of my favorite lines as of late for a few reasons. First, the three of these players combined have a total of 17 points, which is a number that I’m personally happy with. These three forwards are often put against opposing teams top lines and have great amounts of success slowing down or stopping other teams top guys, the reason being that these three players are all players who work on the penalty kill so they know how to stop talented opponents. This line has an incredible amount of hustle, especially as of late and is the only grind line the Rangers have. I would like to give a special pat on the back to Dominic Moore who, after losing his wife and taking last NHL season off is having a better year then I expected him to.
The third line for the Rangers is Carl Hagelin-JT Miller-Benoit Pouliot and Mats Zuccarello who occasionally plays on this third line. Combined this line has 31 points, 59 if you include Mats Zuccarello and has been the Rangers BEST line as of late. Benoit Pouliot has really found his game and is currently on a seven game point scoring streak. JT Miller has been great since his call-up, and in my opinion, is a big part of the reason that this line has been so successful, Miller is a big body and has a lot of speed to offer for this line which goes along quite well with the speed of Carl Hagelin who really knows how to use his speed to help his line mates by opening up the ice for them.
The issue with the Rangers is no longer the lack of depth, the team has found the key to a very good bottom six group of guys. The issue now is with the top six guys, where is Rick Nash, Brad Richards, Derek Stepan, Ryan Callahan (when he’s healthy), Derick Brassard. These guys have to pick their game up; they’re supposed to be the best players on the team and are currently being out played by the “worst players” the team. The leaders on this team need to stop up and find a way to get going or this team is going to be in a lot of trouble.