Pavel Buchnevich used to drive former coach Alain Vigneault crazy with his inability to get the most out of the talent he possesses. Now, five games into the new season, Buchnevich seems to be having the same effect on new coach David Quinn.
“You don’t want to teach people it’s OK not to play hard,’’ said Quinn, who scratched Buchnevich from Tuesday’s lineup. “All these guys think they try hard. It’s not like they go out there thinking that they’re not trying hard. I think the biggest thing for guys, as they continue to get older, is changing their definition of what trying hard is.’’
Buchnevich might be sitting out a little while. The Rangers play in Washington Wednesday against the Stanley Cup champion Capitals, so unless the coach is forced to make a lineup change because of an injury or some other reason, Buchnevich wouldn’t have a chance between games where he could impress Quinn by working hard at practice. Last week, when he scratched defenseman Kevin Shattenkirk Quinn made a point to say Shattenkirk’s benching would be just for one game. He made no such pronouncement about Buchnevich.
“No, this is different,’’ Quinn said of Buchnevich.“This guy’s a talented player, and one of the things he and I have talked about is we just need more out of him, consistently.’’
Enforcer Cody McLeod took Buchnevich’s spot in the lineup. Ds Adam McQuaid and Anthony DeAngelo were scratched as Freddie Claesson played his third consecutive game and Neal Pionk returned to the lineup after sitting out two straight . . . Besides the lineup changes, Quinn revamped his forward lines and defense pairs. Filip Chytil, the 19-year-old rookie, moved from fourth line center to second line left wing, playing with Kevin Hayes and Mats Zuccarello. Vlad Namestnikov moved from the fourth line to the third line, while Ryan Spooner dropped from the third to the fourth, where he centered for McLeod and Vinni Lettieri… On defense, Marc Staal played with Brendan Smith and Brady Skjei played with Pionk. Shattenkirk played with Claesson.