New York Rangers: Emerson Etem’s Survival Guide


Dear Emerson Etem,

In a midst of monotony this weekend I had a chance to listen to the interview you gave to‘s Jim Cerny.

While you first struck me as corporate, boring, disenchanting and blah in your whoopee cushion pink shirt and blase California hipster haircut, I was oddly fascinated by you. Mostly because of the fact that you came to the New York Rangers as a byproduct of a trade that involved beloved and coveted winger Carl Hagelin, how noticably unmoved you were. As you said in the interview you were traded from a big city (Anaheim) lived close to Los Angeles and you were used to big city life.

New York Rangers
New York Rangers /

New York Rangers

After listening to your interview and getting over my initial, somewhat over reactionary disgust that it was you in whom was evidently quantum meruit for our beloved Carl Hagelin in the eyes of old man Sather, I took a moment to review a short highlight reel of you and your Californier days. Let me say sir, while I’m not gushing over you as I once did Hagelin, I believe you have the potential to fit in nicely.

As a lifelong Rangers fan, one whose roots run deep in New York, and just overall good guy, allow me to welcome you aboard to this year’s team. I have taken this moment to prepare a brief survival guide for the duration of your stay here in New York City. In it you will find helpful tips on making your stay here both productive and enjoyable.

Let me preface this by saying, Emerson, this is NOT Califawnia, this is New York City. This is not just “a big city” of which you alluded to, this is “THE big city.” Failure of any kind is not taken kindly here and we either like you or we don’t. NOTHING is ever personal insofar as you don’t make it personal, and NEVER make it personal (except when the Devils, the Canadiens, the Islanders or the Penguins come to town, then make it personal.)

The current state of affairs in which you inherit is a team at the crossroads. We have awaited 21 years for Lord Stanley to come home, the last two years in which the team has made it to the finals and were favored to win the finals last year, coming up five games short have been both riveting and dissapointing.

You have some of the finest talent around you, and providing that the front office doesn’t screw up in arbitration with Derek Stepan, you inherit a team that is a heavy contender inside a deep and dangerous Metropolitan division. Make no mistake this city wants a Stanley Cup this year. After the let down of last year we expect nothing less.

Apr 22, 2015; Winnipeg, Manitoba, CAN;Anaheim Ducks right wing Emerson Etem (16) gets the puck past Winnipeg Jets defenseman Jacob Trouba (8) during the first period in game four of the first round of the 2015 Stanley Cup Playoffs at MTS Centre. Mandatory Credit: Bruce Fedyck-USA TODAY Sports

The New York Rangers’ ebb and flow of how they play hockey fits into what you do well. At 6’1″ and 212 lbs, you skate well and fast. So do the rest of your Blueshirt counterparts. I also like the way you are able to move around and bump and grind in front of the net.

You are kamikaze-like in driving to the net, have quick release of your shot and you are not afraid to get physical. Some of the best of your eight goals that you scored in your 57 regular season and playoff games last year came off of rebounds and clean shots right in front of the net. For a Califawnia boy this is a welcome surpise. GET IN THERE AND BUMP WITH YA BOOTY SON!

You’ll need to keep that style up this year as the Rangers were horrible on the rebound in the Playoffs last year, resulting in several two-goal mediocre wins in spite of countless scoring opportunities inside. They definitely need to implement physicality into that ebb and flow. Oh, and eight goals is not enough. You’ll need to score more, which shouldn’t be a problem with a team that touts centers and wingers such as Rick Nash, Derick Brassard, Chris Kreider, and with any luck Derek Stepan (PLEASE DEAR JESUS, DONT LET THEM SCREW UP THE ARBITRATION, lawyers make me nervous).

More from Rangers News

You mentioned in the interview that some of the team has already welcomed you. “Kreids” (Chris Kreider, hereinafter, please refer to him as such, as it’s a little too lovey dovey; this is NOT Califawnia, there is no love in the heart of the city, just “biness”) being one of them. He told you where some of the good restaraunts are in the city. Starks Steakhouse on E. 46th (where legendary John Gotti famously offed former Mafia head Paul Castellano in front of the restaraunt, allegedly. What Mafia? It’s this thing of ours, capece?) is one of my favorites. As is Gallaghers on W. 52nd. You’ll need to go there with your teamates, often.

For as talented as this team is, it needs identity. It needs that culture that the great teams have; That similar vision and swag that is built upon comrardere on and off the ice. I recommend the lobster bisque at Starks. It is outstanding, give Chef Guilerrmo my regards.

That’s all I can bestow on you. I have the utmost hope for you and trust you will fit in, in someway or another. As for me, I’m signing off. Im sure the rest of Blue Line Station can give you some feedback.

Best Regards,

Tony G.

Next: Does Vigneault Approve of the New Coach's Challenge?

More from Blue Line Station