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Gaborik shifts to left wing, Rangers split up big three

Jan 14, 2013, 11:15 PM EDT

Marian Gaborik Getty Images

It looks like we won’t see the dream line of Marian Gaborik, Rick Nash, and Brad Richards from the New York Rangers — at least not at first.

Rangers coach John Tortorella has tentatively decided to shift Gaborik to the left side and put him on a line with Derek Stepan and Ryan Callahan, according to the New York Post.

Gaborik has logged next to no time as a left winger in the three campaigns in New York.

“There’s definitely going to be an adjustment, especially in our own zone and with wall play, so I’ll work on that whenever I get the chance,” Gaborik said. “I like shooting from the left side. I feel very comfortable with my shot from [the left wing circle], so that could be an advantage.

“Also, if I’m playing with Step [Derek Stepan], it’s good that his first instinct as a right-hander is to move the puck on his forehand to the left side.”

Assuming this experiment works out, then Nash, Richards, and Carl Hagelin will play together.

“If Rick and I are on different lines, it makes it a lot more difficult for opposing coaches to match their defense against us,” Gaborik said. “If moving to the left makes us a more dangerous team, I’m all for it.”

The pressure will be on the Rangers to perform this season as one of the early favorites to win the Stanley Cup. They will start the shortened campaign against the Boston Bruins at 7:00 p.m. ET on Saturday.

Related:

Tortorella takes less intense approach to short camp

  1. jaredo10 - Jan 14, 2013 at 11:23 PM

    top 3 lines are Money.. im really looking forward to seeing that third line of boyle krieder and pyatt

  2. nygdriveforfive - Jan 14, 2013 at 11:33 PM

    Rangers have some serious talent. it’s to bad that dirty cheap shoting Hagelin is one of them.

    • johnstone17 - Jan 15, 2013 at 6:24 AM

      WHAT? Cheapshot? What are you smoking?

    • homerx - Jan 15, 2013 at 6:24 AM

      Yeah, and what about the player that cheap shotted Boyle and gave him a concussion. He was n fire in the playoffs up until that point. Hopefully he has fully recovered for this season.

  3. bigbadbruins77 - Jan 14, 2013 at 11:50 PM

    stacked team, lots of talent, but not as deep and well balanced as the Bruins. It will be fun to watch the Bruins beat them on Saturday and the following Wednesday :D and here comes the thumbs down from rangers fans :P

    • danphipps01 - Jan 15, 2013 at 1:30 AM

      Your goalie is worse, your forward crop is thinner and less talented and they’re also slightly bigger than you. You’re maybe a hair better on D, but that’s all you’ve got on the Rags now. They’re a war machine, and the best player on your team is taking the year off.

      So yeah, good luck with that.

      • bigbadbruins77 - Jan 15, 2013 at 2:24 AM

        The forward crop is a whole 2 lines deeper. Our defense is better hands down… wait until you see dougie hamilton ;) and our goalie is better…check their stats. ..esp sv %. Yhomas is old anyway and is cfar from our best. See seguin…bergie…chara. you’ll see on sat haha can’t wait

      • danphipps01 - Jan 15, 2013 at 3:00 AM

        Ha. Haha. Right. Well, since you decided not to do the research, I actually will take a look. Hot damn, look what I found.

        Rask: 102 GP, 47-35-11, 2.20 GAA, .926 SV%
        Lundqvist: 468 GP, 252-155-54, 2.27 GAA, .920 SV%

        So, over nearly five times as many games, Lundqvist’s numbers are slightly worse. Get back to me on how well Rask’s have held up after 350 more games. Oh, yeah, and it gets better:

        In the last five seasons, Lundqvist was played over 70 games three times and no less than 62 in any one season. Rask peaked at 45 once, nearly three years ago. Lundqvist posted his numbers being worked harder than any other goalie in the NHL over the last five years and was nominated for the Vezina in two of them – winning one. Rask’s got two more career wins than Lundqvist has *shutouts*.

        But hey. Since you started on the stats thing, I’ll let you finish it off, too – how about you go and find out how many Olympic gold medals Lundqvist and Rask have won respectively, and you can tell me instead of me, once again, telling you.

      • cowboys282 - Jan 15, 2013 at 8:29 AM

        I remember you Dan. How could I forgot your Ranger love. Well here is a question for you. What does Rask and most of the rest of the Bruins have that Lundqvist and the rest of the rangers do not? Give up? Its a Stanley Cup ring.

        But I guess the player coming over from the worst team in the league is your savior? We will find out by the end of the year. And yes I will be at the game in case you were wondering lol.

      • bigbadbruins77 - Jan 15, 2013 at 6:53 PM

        Nice assumption that I didn’t do research. I looked into their stats like a MONTH ago in another topic (look it up if you’d like). Fact is Rask has a better SV and win % than Henrik, and I like Henrik, but facts are facts. I don’t want to hear “oh Henrik has played more games”, because you ranger fans talk like Rask has only played 5 NHL games, he’s played over 100 NHL GAMES! That’s over a season, not to mention how well he just played in Europe. He’s a technically more sound goalie than Thomas, always was. He didn’t “lose” his starting job, because he never had it. He was only 21 then! Goalies take a long time to mature. He’s now 25 and is ready to be the MAN! What does olympic gold medals have to do with anything? that’s a TEAM effort! Last time I checked SWEDEN is a power house, Rasks country isn’t. Idiot! Rask has a STANLEY CUP RING! Henrik doesn’t ;) . Oh and it’s hard to have played as many games as Henrik when you are 5 YEARS YOUNGER! and had a great goalie playing with you, Henrik is 30 and didn’t have another solid goalie with him. All of your points are assumptions, childish, and void. See you on Saturday when the Bruins light you up! WOOOOO! The Bruins defense is the best in the league, hands down, the rangers aren’t even close in that category, The bruins have guys like Kelly and Peverley on their 3rd line that would be top 6 forwards on any other team, they are THAT deep and well balanced. We now have Seguin ready to lead the team at a super young age, and adding a 6′ 5″ 200+lb monster in Dougie Hamilton on defense. He’s a bigger version of Ray Bourque. We also have our bruiser sniper in and 2011 cup Hero in Horton back, and Mcquaids big body and lock down defender back and healthy. Your rangers are good, but will get crushed by the bruins. Wait and see. Boston does have two “decent back up goalies” Anton Khubulin is a solid goalie and Subban in the AHL will be ready. With 13 players under 25, including two of their best players at age 19 and 20, it’s going to be a great team to watch for the next decade :)

    • stakex - Jan 15, 2013 at 2:31 AM

      I wouldn’t give you a thumbs down if you’re opinion was rooted in fact…. but its not.

      The Bruins defense and goaltending are not on the same level as the Rangers in terms of depth. The Rangers have perhaps the best goalie in the NHL, with a solid backup. The Bruins are putting their faith in a guy who lost the starting job a couple seasons ago, and has to prove he can carry the team on a consistent basis. Not to mention Boston doesn’t have a decent backup, which will be a problem in such a short season. Boston does has a good defense, but at best its on level with that of the Rangers and, especially after signing Gilroy, the Rangers have defensive depth out the ass. The one area last year Boston out performed the Rangers was goal scoring, but on paper the Rangers should have improved in that area quite a bit so any “more well balanced” argument is probably a season out dated.

      We’ll see when the see when the season starts, but your statement sounds more like one of fear then fact.

      • bigbadbruins77 - Jan 15, 2013 at 6:55 PM

        umm see my above comment, you’re wrong.

    • steelpenbucs87 - Jan 15, 2013 at 9:38 AM

      I don’t know – I think the Rangers run pretty deep on the offensive side of things, and their commitment to team defense and shotblocking makes their defense formidable as well no matter who is on the ice… they also have this Henry guy who is pretty good I hear.

      Boston isn’t to be scoffed at either, don’t get me wrong, but the B’s find themselves talking about potential depth and talent, whereas the Rangers have proven depth and talent (provided it can stay healthy).

      Rangers, B’s, Pens, Flyers, maybe the Caps if they can get themselves sorted out, don’t look now but the Canes have made themselves a nice little team… there is going to be a TON of good hockey played at the top of the East.

    • bigbadbruins77 - Jan 20, 2013 at 3:49 PM

      well I hate to say I told you so. Bruins DOMINATE the rangers with ease. That game could have easily been 7-1. Tuukka > Henrik

  4. greatminnesotasportsmind - Jan 14, 2013 at 11:56 PM

    Don’t worry, Gaborik will have either a hip or groin injury by Valentine’s day

  5. broadstbully33 - Jan 15, 2013 at 12:11 AM

    What’s the over under for time it take soft him to get injured?

    • johnstone17 - Jan 15, 2013 at 6:27 AM

      Same as Bryzgolov becoming a true # 1 goalie again

    • magicrat13 - Jan 15, 2013 at 9:18 AM

      can someone please translate this for me?…thanks!

  6. danphipps01 - Jan 15, 2013 at 1:33 AM

    Kreider on the third and Hagelin on the top line? Did Torts forget which one was which in that last playoff run? Hagelin was useless and Kreider set a record for most goals in the postseason by a player who’s not yet played in the regular season.

    • stakex - Jan 15, 2013 at 2:33 AM

      Thats true, and I think Kreider has the ability to be a future star for the Rangers… but its hard to ignore that hes also had a really bad year in the AHL. With no room for error in a 48 game season, I don’t blame Torts for starting him out on the 3rd line. Its a little less pressure, and a lot less chance to make mistakes. If he looks good, he can always be moved up. If theres one thing Torts isn’t afraid of…. its changing up his lines.

      • danphipps01 - Jan 15, 2013 at 2:43 AM

        Fair. At least Hagelin should be consistent, albeit at an entirely forgettable level.

      • timmmah10 - Jan 15, 2013 at 9:11 AM

        Kreider needs to pay his dues, remember. It’s the way of the NHL.

        But put Kreider on a line with Gabo, and watch how the speed will dominate.

    • homerx - Jan 15, 2013 at 6:30 AM

      If there’s one thing I’ve learned over the past few years it’s to trust Torts. At a minimum he will be making a point with Kreider that he needs to live up to his talent and expectations. I’m sure he will be moved up at some point but can you imagine the production and speed of lines 2 & 3. Man this team better go all the way.

      • larrybiv - Jan 15, 2013 at 8:34 AM

        That’s exactly what Torts thinking is. Hagelin took that BAD penalty, but wasn’t really THAT bad. He’s not afraid to go in the corners and get the puck. he does HAVE TO, do much better. you just don’t HAND a 1st or 2nd line assignment to Kreider. You have to “earn” that, and Kreider will be better for it, once accomplished.

    • magicrat13 - Jan 15, 2013 at 9:20 AM

      true…but i think at this time hagelin has a better overall game…yes, krieder was a scoring machine in the playoffs (especially for someone with no nhl experience) but with nash and richards on the top line i think scoring would be the least of the teams worries for the third player on that line…

  7. capsfan19 - Jan 15, 2013 at 7:42 AM

    As much as i cant stand both teams!! Ha but i like rags chances. Kreider has so much potential.
    Were his numbers better this past post-season over seguins post season 2011-2012? Either way he lit us up i’ll tell you that much.

  8. valoisjoeybfeld69 - Jan 15, 2013 at 9:11 AM

    Considering the shortened season I’m surprised about the decision to experiment by moving Gaborik to the LW. This would be a non issue during an 82 game schedule. You know what? Torts is a perfectionist and a very detailed oriented coach. I doubt he’s going to be patient with Gaborik’s short comings playing an unfamiliar position. I don’t expect Gaborik to to be on the LW for too long.

  9. bardown66 - Jan 15, 2013 at 11:25 AM

    The rangers are an enigma to me. It’s all there for the taking but Pittsburgh played them well last year and don’t see why it wouldn’t be te same now. Here comes thumbs down for giving an honey opinion but mostly since I like the pens. Gl rangers, this division is going to be a dog fight

  10. valoisjoeybfeld69 - Jan 15, 2013 at 1:09 PM

    Torts may have pushed the players a little too hard last year which caused the boys to run out of steam. He has to pace the guys a little more to be prime for the playoffs after an 82 game season. Of course this shortened season is perfect for him, but if he pushes too hard at the outset they are going to run into many injuries.

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