The reeling New York Rangers, losers of 10 of 12 games fired heach coach, Tom Renney on Monday and hired former Rangers Assistant Coach John Tortorella. The move by GM Glen Sather is an attempt to save what was once a promising season for the Rangers. New York jumped out of the gate with a 10-2-1 record only to flounder leading up to and into the second half of the year. The Rangers have failed to score points, relying heavily on the goaltending of Henrik Lundqvist and nine shootout wins.
Although the coach is often the victim in these scenarios, few doubt that this recent slump is Renney’s doing. The Rangers lack a serious first Center and have no standout Defenseman. While the power play could certainly be better with the talent they have, the Rangers weren’t built for a serious cup run. You have to wonder if Sather should ultimately take the fall here.
For his part John Tortorella should bring some intensity to the team. His style contrasts that of Tom Renney’s laid back approach. The Rangers are still in a playoff spot and Tortorella should be able to keep them there and even improve their position but don’t expect the Rangers to get past the 2nd round of the playoffs this year.
Tortorella’s first shot comes on Wednesday 2/25 at Toronto. The Rangers will return home on 2/26 to host the Florida Panthers. Rangers tickets are available for this and all home games.