3 Questions With... Mike Murphy "Dig Deep" of Blueshirt Banter

Bruce Bennett

Hello. Last time on "3 Questions With..." we had Blueshirt Banter's Kevin Power. It was pretty good, but apparently a little too nice. Plus, Mike Murphy came over here and acted like a Tortorella child.

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So, because I'm such a nice guy, I asked Mike to let us know a little insider perspective on the 0-3 New York Rangers. Let's see what he had to say:

1: Tortorella apparently can't coach his way around the offensive dynamo that is Shawn Thornton. How should the Rangers contain him?

Knowing Torts I would imagine that he would go with a simple and blunt solution that may or may not employ the use of profanity or some kind of bullying. In this particular case I think he'd attempt to have several Rangers wrassle Shawn Thornton to the ground, muzzle him, and then relocate him - just like you would any other problem bear. Given how thick Shawn Thornton's neck is I think it would take at least three Brian Boyles or about fourteen Mats Zuccarellos. What Torts really has to do is contain the blueline of the Bruins. So many of the goals in this series have come from open shots from the point that have created havoc in the form of big rebounds, screens, or deflections. I don't know why Torts and the Rangers haven't adapted to this but they struggled with it against the Caps in the First Round and it seems like they just don't know how to address the problem.

2: Do you miss Gaborik? Any other players you'd like to have in this series that have left the Rangers recently?

I miss the "good" Marian Gaborik and the healthy Marian Gaborik but I don't think he would have had a big impact on this series or prevented the Rangers from getting in a 3-0 hole. As outstanding as Gaborik was against the Bruins in the regular season this year he was also unbearably inconsistent and far too prone to injury. Having Gaborik would also mean not having Derick Brassard (the best Ranger other than Hank in the playoffs) and John Moore who has been crucial to the team with the loss of Marc Staal on the blueline. Marc Staal is who I really miss and wish was in the series because as bad and inadequate as the Rangers offense and powerplay has been in the playoffs and in this series in particular, their defense hasn't been much better. Losing Marc Staal has been devastating to the Rangers blueline and replacing him in the lineup has been a struggle and has once again exposed the less-than-stellar defensive play of Michael Del Zotto.

3: If the Rangers lose in the next 4 games and Torts gets fired, who do you think the Rangers would bring in to replace him? Who would you like them to bring in?

I have no idea if Torts will or won't lose his job over how this season, the playoffs, or this series has gone. John Tortorella hasn't been an awful coach since he took over the reins in New York, in fact he's been a pretty good one. Getting the team to the Eastern Conference Finals last year and getting them into the Second Round this year is not something that should be easily dismissed but there is no denying that things have to change and improve in New York and it looks like it is time for a change in the way the Rangers play hockey. The lack of offense and the awful powerplay alone prompts some kind of action. Whether or not that is Torts losing his job or a new assistant coming in to replace Mike Sullivan or help work on the powerplay I am not sure. The name Lindy Ruff has been kicked around a lot but Ruff is more or less the same coach as Torts so I am not sure what good that would do the Rangers. As of the moment I don't have any solid ideas for potential replacements... I just hope that if they do give him the yank they put someone in there who is a lot nicer to the press, they've been through a lot with Torts at the helm.

Thanks again to Mike for answering my questions.

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