- Nine straight home games, “we are hoping it’s good. With what we went through to start the season on the road, we have played well on the road and we need to bring that to us at home. We want to go into the new year in a high note and it can really jump us up in the standings.”
- On what has been missing at home, “Probably consistency. We will have a good period and then back off for maybe 10 or 15 minutes and give the other team momentum. It’s playing a solid game and getting a good 60 minutes.”
- On last nigh and Alain Vigneault telling them not to be afraid, “I think sometimes it works to a teams favor if you have a new coaching staff and they haven’t gone through the hard times that the team has gone through there.”
- On last night, “for me, I thought it was a real exciting game. 1-0 games can be real sleepers but I felt that both goalies played tremendously well and it was a great hockey game.”
- On the team play last night, “the commitment to working 200 ft was one of our keys and our forwards were helping the D and it was a team effort.”
- On Justin Falk: I think he provided some stability and played hard and was a hard player to play against. I think he was pretty good with the puck as well considering he has been out for a while.”
- On the Kings, “The Kings are a great team and we will need another really good effort. They are a big team and good down low in their cycles and we need to use our speed.”
4:50PM: Brad Richards told SNY’s Nick Licalzi today, “We have worked on it more this year than we have in a while. We are putting a lot of emphasis on it, which it should be. Teams that score on the PP take so much pressure off of 5 on 5 play.”
Vigneault said that he isn’t sure of what went wrong in the past but that the sees a group of players that have enough skill to be good on the power play. He said that they have been working on the PP for most of the last ten days and that getting Derek Stepan back, and Ryan Callahan soon, will help since they are right handed shots.
Vigneault said that having two right shots and three left shots, or vice versa, allow the players to do one-touch passes and have an easier time setting up one-timers.
The PP units yesterday at practice were
- Points: Michael Del Zotto (L) Dan Girardi (R). Benoit Pouliot (R), Derick Brassard (L), Mats Zuccarello (L)
- Points: Brad Richards (L) Marc Staal (L). JT Miller (L), Rick Nash (L), Derek Stepan (R)
Miller is likely holding the spot of Ryan Callahan (R).
During the preseason, Derick Brassard said that he thinks assistant coach Scott Arniel is going to make a big difference for the Rangers on the power play and with their forwards.
Rick Nash, who was the captain while Arniel was the head coach in Columbus, said “Arnie is great. We had a great relationship in Columbus. I really liked him as a coach. He adapts to the players. He played in the league. I am definitely excited he was here.”
Alain Vigneault praised Arniel for the job he did in developing young players while the head coach in Manitoba of the AHL. Vigneault said that he benefited from what Arniel did with the young players because they were able to help the Canucks.
5:37PM: Arniel’s comments were:
“You can see the class of Derick. The day I got hired he called me the next day. I was gonna reach out to him. We had a great conversation and I told him how proud I was of him and how he played last year with the Rangers. As a coach in Columbus, you are always going to have situations like ice time issues. There is nothing personal. Derick and I still work together. We have both moved on and hopefully for better days ahead.”
“It was all created by the comments from his agent. Derick and I talked about it then and cleared the air then. It had a lot to do with that we had traded for Carter. We had drafted Ryan Johansen, we had Antoine Vermette and Derek McKenzie. We had a lot of centers and we asked Derick to move to the wing. The whole team struggled and it was something we decided as an organization to do and it didn’t work out. At the end of the day I just think you move on.”
3:07PM Scott Arniel spoke with Katie Strang and Andrew Gross and confirmed that there are no issues with Derick Brassard.
Arniel added that Brassard showed a ton of class to call and reach out after Arniel was hired.
He added that there never really was a big rift between the two and that it was created by Allan Walsh.
1:09PM: Via Carp at Rangers Report, Brassard’s comments today were:
- On concerns about Scott Arniel, “No not, really. It’s in the past. I am looking in front of me. I talked to Arnie when he got hired, I called him, there are no hard feelings. I think he can be a good additon to our forwards and our PP. No hard feelings with Arnie. Like the coach says on the shirt, it’s a clean slate. Everything is good between us.”
- On their relationship in Columbus, “I don’t wanna think about my past in Columbus. We are here to help the Rangers, here to help the team on the ice. He is here to help the players and PP. As soon as he was hired I called him and told him that he could be a great fit for us and I am looking forward to working with him.
- On why Arniel can be a fit, “he played in the league so he has experienced. When I talked to AV, Arnie worked a long time with the farm team in Vancouver. He was doing a great job there, that is why AV brought him to NY. We can’t look at the past, we are looking at what is in front us. We want to help the Rangers.
The rest of his comments are below
12:55PM: According to tweets from Katie Strang and Andrew Gross, Derick Brassard called Scott Arniel after he was hired as an assistant coach and said that there are no hard feelings from their issues in Columbus.
Strang quotes Brassard as saying that he thinks Arniel can be a real help for the Rangers forwards and power play.
THIS SECTION is about Arniel
In the Columbus Dispatch, Aaron Portzline writes about the “bizarre” decision the Rangers made to hire Scott Arniel as an associate coach.
Portzline notes that Arniel has a history with Vigneault from when Arniel was the head coach of Vancouver’s AHL team and that his history with the former Blue Jackets on the Rangers “wasn’t pleasant.”
Portzline said, when Arniel was fired, that the situation with Derick Brassard bordered on unprofessional and that when Brassard was producing, he would end up lower in the lineup and with less ice time.
The Rangers website spoke with Brassard about Arniel and said that Brassard respects Arniel despite their past issues. Brassard said that he has grown up a lot since Arniel was the Blue Jackets coach and thinks that he will be a nice addition to the team.
For more on Arniel, CLICK HERE.
The Province reports that Arniel has a three-year contract with the Rangers and that Arniel was excited to join an original six franchise with a great goalie, young defense and top-end forwards.
Arniel told the paper that he was very happy that Vigneault wanted him for the same role that Rick Bowness had when Vigneault was in Vancouver.
He adds that he and Vigneualt spoke a lot when Arniel was the head coach in Columbus and that getting fired was the best thing that ever happened to him.
Aaron Portzline, who covered Scott Arniel when he was the head coach in Columbus, tweeted that the Rangers hiring of Arniel was a real “head scratcher.”
Arniel was 45-60-18 in one and a half seasons as Blue Jackets coach. Rick Nash, Derek Dorsett, John Moore, Derick Brassard and Anton Stralman played under Arniel when he was in Columbus and Taylor Pyatt and Martin Biron played under him when he was an assistant coach in Buffalo.
In December of 2011, Brassard’s agent Allan Walsh sent a letter to the Columbus Dispatch blaming Arniel for singling out Brassard’ and attempting to use him as a scapegoat to mask his struggles as a coach.
Arniel said at the time that Brassard needed to earn his ice-time back.
He was fired a little over a month later in January 2012 and Brassard went on to have 25 points in 32 games over the last three months of the year.
On a podcast shortly after Arniel was fired, Dispatch writer Shawn Mitchell said that the players liked Arniel and didn’t question his tactics.
Mitchell aid that Derick Brassard declined to comment but did say that the two got along and were “fine.”
THIS SECTION is all about Arniel.
Adam Rotter: Arniel isn’t the head coach of the Rangers but he will be working with Brassard as his responsibilities include the PP and forwards. John Tortorella had issues and ups and downs with Ruslan Fedotenko and Vinny Prospal in Tampa Bay but ironed things out in NY. Both Brassard and Arniel need to move past whatever issues they had and work together or neither will be in NY past this season.
Yesterday, Scott Arniel joined TSN Radio in Winnipeg:
- On his title, “whatever it is, associate head coach, it was something that Alain wanted, it’s what he had with Rick Bowness, he offered it and I took it. I’m flattered but I don’t think my job description changes.”
- On going to the Rangers, “I took the family down to NY two weeks ago and we had coaches meetings. We spent time together at as group. It’s a tad bigger of a city than Winnipeg but we went out and looked for places to live. It’s an original six team with great history. I am really excited, we have a really good staff, a really good team. I can’t wait to get the season going.”
The Rangers have announced the members of Alain Vigneault’s coaching staff:
- Scott Arniel (more) is “Associate Coach”
- Ulf Samuelsson (more) and Daniel Lacroix (more) are “Assistant Coaches
- Benoit Allaire remains as “Assistant and Goalie coach”
Arniel will handle the power play and forwards, Samuelsson will handle the defense and PK and Lacroix will fill the role of “eye in the sky,” pre-scouting, skill work and player development.
Announcement from the team is below:
Katie Strang tweets that Scott Arniel is expected to join Alain Vigneault as an assistant coach with the Rangers.
Arniel would join Ulf Samuelsson, who was at the Rangers training center today watching development camp, as an assistant coach.
He was the coach of the Canucks AHL team and he told Vancouver GM Mike Gillis that he wanted to become an NHL assistant coach rather than go with the team to Utica, NY.
Arniel has coached Rick Nash, Derek Dorsett, Derick Brassard and John Moore and he and Brassard didn’t always have the best relationship.
He was also an assistant coach in Buffalo during the time that Marty Biron and Taylor Pyatt were there.