To say the end of the season into the offseason for the New York Rangers has been a circus is an understatement. But looking back a few weeks later since the madness started, I have to admit that I am in an ok place as a Rangers fan. The shock and awe has faded as Gorton and JD have now departed. The Quinn era has officially ended. The New York Rangers are ready to take a step into the next phase of the rebuild.
To sum up my thoughts of the Gorton and JD firing; it had to be done. Over the last few seasons the name Chris Drury was put on the back burner. The Rangers had so much lottery luck with the NHL draft, that the draft was a lay up rather than a chess game. Everything in management was going just fine that the leadership of Gorton and JD was never questioned, nor should it have been. But Chris Drury has paid his dues and was just as much involved than anyone else. Looking back now, it was clear who Chris Drury was. A sought out GM of the future. He made it clear he wanted to be a part of the New York Rangers by turning down potential jobs in Buffalo and Pittsburgh. Gorton and JD were moving too slow and Dolan and Sather knew that it was time to give Drury his shot.
The Quinn firing was the first move Drury had to make. Clean house of the coaching staff that has done the ugly job that few probably wanted. No coach wants to take over a rebuild. In my opinion, it’s a no win situation in NY. Quinn was a part of the rebuild and saw his opportunity to gain a much needed NHL experience as a head coach. Quinn and his effort based system (if that’s what you want to call it) ran it’s course. The Rangers need a coach that can control a locker room, teach the x and o hockey, adjust a system mid game, and know how to manage a NHL roster that has a mix of young guns and NHL stars. I’ve said for months that Gallant was a perfect candidate, and he looks to be the favorite right now.
What does all of this mean for the New York Rangers? The Rangers ownership and now management do not see the Rangers as a rebuilding team anymore. They are onto the next phase. The Rangers are now gearing up as a playoff team. Which makes sense looking at this past season. The Rags would have made the playoffs if this was a regular 82 game schedule and it was the normal playoff format. I will go even further as a fan. The Rangers are not too far off from competing for a Stanley Cup. This offseason could see some big splashes happening and with a few additions and changes to the line up, this team could start to look more like a Colorado Avalanche rather than a Calgary Flames. Adding another top forward and some grit will do wonders come playoff time. You know those problems will be dealt with and that changes to this roster are imminent.
But if you are still upset about the changes with the New York Rangers management all I can say is let’s see what Drury has. Let him bring in a coach. Let’s see what that coach can do and let’s see what the roster looks like. Listen, Drury hasn’t parted ways with any key players just yet. He hasn’t signed or traded for anyone. So let the Little League World Series Champ do his thing before we get up in arms over the firing of JD and Gorton. We still have so much to look forward to as fans of the New York Rangers. I can’t wait to see who we will have behind the bench and what the roster will look like heading into next year! Let’s gain some depth and get a little tougher and let’s make some fucking noise next season!!!