Who's ready for hockey? With training camps on the verge of opening, it's finally time to get excited for a new season. No question Ryan Callahan's ready. The popular Rangers' right wing appeared on NBC's Mike'd Up the other night with Bruce Beck to discuss the upcoming Fall as well as last year's bitter disappointment.
On how the Flyers ended the Ranger season in a shootout and then made a run all the way to the Cup Finals, Callahan noted how wide open last year's East was. Absolutely but still, Philly was not your normal low seed. Relatively speaking, they were loaded up front and on the back end compared to our team. Unless Henrik Lundqvist and Marian Gaborik got hot, it's difficult to figure that roster going that deep. Of course, we'll never know.
Ranger Tribune's Nick Montemagmo had more on Cally's interview, which was better than expected. Speaking of King Henrik, the future captain heaped plenty of praise on the franchise's most valuable player:
"I am amazed at how good he is sometimes. Sometimes it's frustrating in practice. You can't score on him so you want to go shoot on the other goalie."Not surprising. You wonder if that kind of goaltending even in practice can put players into slumps. The 25 year-old Rochester native followed up a career best 22 goals and 40 points with 19 markers and 37 points over 77 contests. The spark plug who plays an in your face style, ranked third in hits (285) trailing only Olympic teammate Dustin Brown (287) and St. Paul wrecking ball Cal Clutterbuck (318). When asked about his style by Beck, Callahan indicated that that's how he has to play to be effective. He enjoys dishing it out and definitely looked jacked.
He's also excited to add former King Alexander Frolov, who can aid a lowscoring club, taking pressure off Gaborik. It will still take a collective effort, which means guys like Callahan and Brandon Dubinsky must be more consistent. Cally's final message to the Garden Faithful was positive:
"You're going to be in for an exciting year. We're going to start the year off with a bang and not only make the playoffs, but make a run at it."
Let's hope he's a prophet.