I know there was some concern on the blog about Alain Vigneault not feeling Dan Carcillo could be an asset against the Penguins and pull him from the line-up. However, those fears were alleviated this morning as Carcillo took line rushes with Brad Richards and Carl Hagelin during this morning’s skate indicating that he’ll be penciled in tonight.
…Car Bomb goes boom!!!!!!
…two years ago against the Flyers, the Penguins proved that they can be rattled in the postseason. Philadelphia knew they needed to turn that series into a knock-down-drag-out brawl and somehow the Penguins took the bait. Instead of focusing on scoring goals, Sidney Crosby was more concerned about fighting Claude Giroux. While I don’t expect the Rangers to deploy the same strategy, the last thing Crosby, who’s now scoreless in his last 10 playoff games, needs is a guy like Carcillo to exasperate his frustration by chirping in his ear all series.
…on most teams, they might be losing something offensively by keeping a Carcillo in the line-up. But the agitator has proven he actually has enough skill to hold his own in what should be a much faster pace than last series.
…the one worry with Carcillo in this series, beyond the refs likely favoritism of Crosby & the Penguins, is that he still has a reputation with the officials, as seen with the phantom penalty he received in Game 3 against the Flyers, so they’ll likely whistle him on anything that remotely resembles a penalty. I call it the Sean Avery bias.
In some other positive news, Chris Kreider (left hand) skated with the team in a non-contact jersey towards the end of practice. Steve Zipay at Newsday noted that Kreider seemed to be handling the puck much better than he had in the previous few days. Zipay did add that he was only flipping the puck on goal, not really shooting it.
There has been some concern in Rangersland about the difficult schedule the Blueshirts are faced with in this series after going seven games with the Flyers. But Derrick Brassard feels it’s not an issue (via ESPN.com)…
“We roll four lines. No one’s tired.”
…love it! No excuses.
H/T to DP Snotty for the ummm…amazing Photoshop of Carcillo.