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2022-23 Rangers Regular Season

Updates before the game against the Islanders

Sammy Blais and Libor Hajek are expected to be scratched tonight against the Islanders. (Brooks)

Gerard Gallant met with the media following the morning skate and said (NYR):

  • Why did Brodzinski move up in the third period on Tuesday, “In the third period I decided that I was going to go to three lines, so I cut it down and I was giving some guys different spots on the right side on the two different lines. He went out and had a great shift and I just went with him. It was about 10 minutes left to go and I tried some other guys and I put him out there and they had two good scoring chances, played well and I said ‘you know what? He had some jump in his legs…’


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  • So you weren’t sitting someone, “No, I wasn’t, I was rotating Brodzinski and Kravtsov on the right side with those guys, so it wasn’t that I didn’t like…when it came down to the time when we needed another goal. I thought that he had just gone out there and scored to make it 3-2 and I said that I would just go with them…”
  • Is Brodzinski playing a simple game and forechecking, “he’s quick and plays a hard game and I just liked the way he was jumping on that shift. I tried the other guys there and it just…it was late in the game and I said that I was going to go with him the rest of the game because he had three good shifts in a row with those guys and I was happy with it, but it wasn’t about the other guys playing bad.”
  • What is the message before the holiday break, “focus on tonight, get ready for tonight. Yesterday, we’ve been on the road a lot, it was a good day for a day off for them to get away, some of their families are here. Today they can come in and have a morning skate and prepare for the game today all day. That was the main reason for the day off…part of it (smile), but it’s always worked for us in the past. We’re better when we have a morning skate instead of the guys sitting home and doing nothing. We brought them in, focus on that.”
  • On Jimmy Vesey’s season, “just consistent, consistently playing well for us and he played on different lines. He started on the so called fourth line earlier in the year and got moved up to different spots with different people and he’s been pretty consistent overall for us. Done a pretty good job on the PK, hadn’t seen much at all PP time yet, but that might come yet, we’ll see.”
  • Vesey said that he thought he could fill Tyler Motte’s role, “I think he’s different than that, I think they are different players. I liked Motte for what he’d done for what we needed for our team last year, but I think Vesey is a guy that came out of college and he could score some goals and put more numbers up and I thought he was a good fit, and also management thought that obviously, but with the make up of our team, when you put those guys on second and third lines, they get more of an opportunity. I think that’s what he’s done for us and the guys that he’s played with, he’s played pretty well.”
  • Is Brodzinski more in the Motte role, “Yea, probably, definitely. And Brods came up last year and last year there wasn’t one game where we were disappointed when he came up and played with us. He’s done a good job and played really well this year.”
  • Was Trocheck’s PK time being down a little bit recently a decision you made, “no, not really. I mean, I think Brodzinski can go in there and play that last, usually the last 20-25 seconds of the PK time and what you are always thinking of as a coach, Panarin doesn’t kill penalties and so I want to get him back with some top centermen after that because usually Zibanejad and Kreider are out there and so you get Panarin out there and he can go out for the odd shift with Trocheck and those guys. That is basically the thought of it, not that Trocheck didn’t do a good job on it, it’s just that ‘do we really need him there?’ And sometimes we’ll put him there.”
  • On Trocheck’s game the last little while, “Honestly, I don’t make a big deal out of systems because I think most of them are the same with all teams, but Carolina plays a real man-to-man, Trocheck was chasing guys a lot and now he’s settling down and figuring out our system a little bit better and, again, when you do that for a couple of years in Carolina and they did a good job of it obviously, but our system is quite a bit different than theirs and a lot of guys have trouble with it, but I thought the last 10 games that Trocheck has been real good for us.”
  • What are you seeing from Panarin and Zibanejad together, “skill, talent, they are starting to read off each other pretty good. I like it, it might change tonight in the second period (smile), we’ll see. They’ve been good, talented players, so we’ll see where it goes.”
  • What is the balance of having two dangerous lines and them staying together, “I want three dangerous lines, when those kids are playing their game they are pretty dangerous, too. I think balance throughout the lineup is real good and I don’t think it makes a difference if Panarin is playing there or Kreider is playing there. It doesn’t make a big difference for me.”
  • Is Kreider being a north/south guy working well with Trocheck, “It seems to be. We all know Kreids, he’s up and down and when he skates, like the goal he scored the other night. I think it’s helped Trocheck’s game too, for sure.”
  • On the Islanders, “It’s time to beat them. We played pretty decent games against them and it’s the last time we are going to play them this year. They are a good team, play the same game every night pretty consistent, for the most part, and great goaltending. It’s a big game in the standings tonight for both teams.”
  • Why do you like a zone system rather than man-to-man, “Early last year we had trouble starting the year out and the man-to-man, they had never done it here before and that was sort of my system too in Vegas and we started that out and didn’t work out that well and so we changed it and it’s been working better since. It’s not perfect, but it’s been better and the guys here before me played the same system they are playing now, pretty much. It’s an adjustment for them to make and we didn’t adjust to it great and so we went back to it. This fits our group.”