As the Rangers returned to New York and started skating informally before training camp starts this week, the focus has been on building off of what the team accomplished last season when they won the Atlantic Division, finished first in the Eastern Conference and went to game six of the Eastern Conference Finals.
Earlier this week captain Ryan Callahan said “we got a good team. The important thing is that we have to be realistic. We need to build on last year and continue to grow throughout this shortened season. There is going to be pressure put on us but internally as a group we just need to stay together and keep working towards the ultimate goal.”
Ryan McDonagh said “I think pressure is always a good thing for a team when expectations are high. Everyone needs to prepare that much more. We still have a ton of work to do and not a lot of time but I think that it can be a good thing as we can bear down and work on things real quick.”
Brian Boyle, to Andrew Gross at Ranger Rants, echoed that there is work ahead for this team, “We didn’t get to the next mountain and get a chance to climb it. We have a lot of work to do just to get there. We know what our goal is. We’ve got to do better than we did last year in a lot of ways.”
Henrik Lundqvist, at Ranger Rants, spoke about how the team expects a lot out of themselves but that they need to stay grounded and remember how they got to where they did last year, “we probably need to stay humble and I think it’s going to be important how we handle that pressure. The pressure we put on ourselves and the pressure from the outside. We had a great year but we worked really hard for it. We have to realize that’s why we had success.”