Regarding the Rangers, who will receive a reminder this week of the organization’s ongoing culture change.
1. Not only five days between games, but five days without a game leading into a swing through Florida that will feature matches in Sunrise on Saturday and in Tampa on Monday.
In the good old days — all the way back to, say, 2017-18 — the Rangers likely would have embarked for the sun and surf no later than Wednesday. cheap nhl jerseys
Probably would have been a couple of practices. But there’d have been beach time, too. No question.
Now, Rye Beach at the other end of 287 is about as close as they’ll come this week. For the Rangers will be treated to a four-day David Quinn boot camp at the club’s very own training facility in beauteous Tarrytown, with practices running Tuesday through Friday before the flight south.
And no, this is not a reaction to the run of slovenly creations through which the Blueshirts have stumbled in going 1-4-1 starting with that Nov. 23 shutout defeat in Philadelphia. The itinerary has been set for weeks. These days, R&R means Repeat & Repeat (Again Until It’s Right).
“We want to practice,” Chris Kreider said before this past lost weekend. “It’s going to be good for us to get the reps. We need it.”
It is not punishment. It is business the way the Rangers now conduct it.
2. Here, though, is an example of punishment relating to a change in a warm-weather trip’s itinerary. During a disappointing 1988-89 season that ate away at general manager Lou Lamoriello, the Devils started a five-game trip with a Jan. 28 game in Minnesota that preceded a Feb. 2 match in LA before the trek would continue to Edmonton, Detroit and Montreal.
The Devils — I was their vice president of communications at the time — played dreadfully against the North Stars even while emerging with a 4-4 tie that left the team 18-25-9. The flight to LA was scheduled for late morning the following day.
Except the phone in my hotel room rang somewhere around 6 a.m. Uh oh. It was Lamoriello. “Be in the lobby at 7. We’re going home.”
And so, the Devils flew home to New Jersey, and then schlepped back out to LA the day before the game against the Kings. P.S.: The Devils went 2-1-1 on the remainder of the trip.