Blue Notes

Steve Zipay takes you inside the locker room, home and on the road, with the New York Rangers, and also writes about the NHL, off and on the ice.

Brad Richards upset at boos for Rick Nash

Rangers' Brad Richards looks on before a face-off

(Credit: Kathleen Malone-Van Dyke)

First of all, the Rangers played their worst game of the series. Inconsistent defensively, 15 shots offensively. Fatigue mentally and physically? Maybe. Pens are flat-out a better team right now, though, as I wrote in the main story tonight.

Here's Brad Richards on the boo-birds:

“Does it upset me? Yeah, it upsets me, it upsets everybody in the locker room,” Richards said. “We’re not...

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If Chris Kreider is cleared, why not play him in 'must' game?

Chris Kreider of the New York Rangers celebrates

(Credit: Getty Images)

Seems like a no-brainer to me. What does Alain Vigneault have to lose?

If you hold the big, speedy 23-year-old Chris Kreider back and the Penguins take Game 4 tonight and head to Pittsburgh with a 3-1 lead in the best-of-seven Eastern Conference Semifinals, the coach will be second-guessed all the way back to Vancouver.

If you lose with Kreider (17 goals during the season and a proven...

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The precarious state of the Rangers in crunch time

Rangers left wing Rick Nash looks on against

(Credit: Kathleen Malone-Van Dyke)

Well, safe to say that in a season of hyperbole, Wednesday’s game is the biggest of the Rangers’ journey this year, which started with a long exhibition season away from home in Western Canada, and could end in Pittsburgh on Friday night.

Lady Gaga, the WNBA and the arena football guys have easier schedules, if you get my drift. Should the Rangers have dispatched the Flyers earlier to avoid...

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Update: Fast, Miller, Diaz in for Dorsett, Carcillo, Moore in Game 3

J.T. Miller (10) settles the puck during the

(Credit: AP / Kostas Lymperopoulos)

First, get ready for the barrage of "big boy pants" wisecracks after Alain Vigneault's pre-game remarks. The Pens wore theirs in Game 2, AV said, and "I need mine to do that."

Calling Rick Nash, Derek Stepan, Martin St. Louis, and the top guys...


In a significant Rangers lineup change for Game 3, rookie winger Jesper Fast replaced Derek Dorsett on the fourth line with Dominic...

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Game 2 preview from Pittsburgh . . . A marathon series?

Martin St. Louis handles the puck in the

(Credit: Getty Images / Justin K. Aller)

PITTSBURGH -- After the Rangers morning skate today, Martin St. Louis, in a jacket and tie, was running toward the team bus.

Outside CONSOL Energy Center, weary finishers in the Pittsburgh Marathon were walking to their car or homes, wrapped in blankets.

When St. Louis was told that the marathon was over, St. Louis breezed by and responded: “It’s just starting.”

For the Rangers,...

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Game 2 report from Pittsburgh: Stralman on PP; Kreider closer

Anton Stralman guards against the Philadelphia Flyers during

(Credit: Kathleen Malone-Van Dyke)

PITTSBURGH -- With the power play mired in a 0-for-25 drought, Rangers coach Alain Vigneault appears to be turning to defenseman Anton Stralman, who has seen very little time with the man-advantage in the second half of the season.

With Columbus in 2009-10 and 2010-11, however, Stralman had five power play goals and 27 assists. In the 2012 playoffs, with John Tortorella behind the bench, he...

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Rangers-Pens Game 1: Storylines

Derrick Brassard during practice on Tuesday, April 15,

(Credit: Errol Anderson)

PITTSBURGH -- A confident Rangers team rolled into CONSOL Energy Center for Game 1 of the Eastern Conference Quarterfinals, their fifth game in eight days and the first in a string of three in four.

 “The most important thing is to hit the reset button,” said Derick Brassard. "We roll four lines, no one's tired ... we’re hungry to win some more games, and there's a really good atmosphere...

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After a 6-2 first round, my latest picks

Henrik Lundqvist makes a save against the Carolina

(Credit: Getty Images / Grant Halverson)

Not for use as a betting tool, by the way, but....

Rangers in 7

Bruins in 7

Ducks in 6

Hawks in 6


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By the Numbers: History of Pens, Rangers this year and past springs

Pittsburgh Penguins' Sidney Crosby celebrates his goal with

(Credit: AP)


The Penguins, who defeated the Columbus Blue Jackets in six games, were seeded No. 2 in the East, and were 28-9-4 at CONSOL Energy Center, where the first two games of the best-of-seven series will be played.


In the regular season, the Rangers were 2-1-1 against the Penguins, and outscored them 13-12. Sidney Crosby (1-5-6) and Chris Kunitz (3-3-6) tied for the Pens scoring...

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Rangers-Penguins, Conference Semifinals Schedule

G1: 5/2, 7 p.m. in Pittsburgh

G2: 5/4, 7:30 in Pitttsburgh

G3: 5/5, 7:30 in New York

G4: 5/7, 7:30 in New York

G5: 5/9 TBD in Pittsburgh*

G6: 5/11 TBD in New York*

G7: 5/13 TBD in Pittsburgh*

*If necessary...

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What was the biggest issue in the Rangers' Stanley Cup loss to the Kings?

Offense Defense Power play Coaching Something else


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