New York Rangers coach Gerard Gallant tells players making the playoffs starts today

The New York Rangers have a mandate, whether they want to say it’s one or isn’t, really doesn’t matter.

Make The Playoffs.

There was a theme yesterday when Gerard Gallant spoke with the press as on-ice workouts are set to begin. “It starts tomorrow,” he said several times. “You don’t make the playoffs in the next six months, it starts tomorrow.”

And just like that, in a mild-manner, Gallant laid out exactly what he wants from his new hockey team.

“Tomorrow is the first day of getting ready to play good hockey,” he continued. “We’re like any other team. We expect to make the playoffs and that’s what our goal is. Talk is cheap. You gotta get ready to work hard and play hard and get ready everyday.”

Tomorrow is now Today for New York Rangers

Today, the Rangers will hit the ice and hit it hard. Or at least they better, because the head coach is expecting to see maximum effort. “It’s about the 23 guys,” he said. “They have to work hard and buy in.”

Here’s a look at what’s on the schedule:

THURSDAY, SEPTEMBER 23 (MSG TRAINING CENTER)

  • Team 1 & 2 Scrimmage (10:00-11:40 AM) 
  • Team 3 Goalies on Ice (1:00-1:30 PM)
  • Team 3 Practice (1:30-3:15 PM)

Gallant not going to change his style

Rangers playoffs
May 5, 2021; New York, New York, USA; Vitek Vanecek #41 of the Washington Capitals blocks the net against Vitali Kravtsov #74 of the New York Rangers during the third period at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Bruce Bennett/POOL PHOTOS-USA TODAY Sports

The Blueshirts hired Gallant because he was battle tested after three head coaching stops in Columbus, Florida, and Vegas. It was his inaugural season with the expansion franchise that brought him to the Stanley Cup Final in 2018, but they fell short.

When asked about his return to coaching, and possibly making some changes, he was quick to answer.

“I had 18 months off, watched a lot of hockey games but nothing has changed with me,” the 58 year-old explained. “I’m going to try and put the same stuff into this team as I did with teams in the past. We’ve got a lot of talent on this team.”

Other questions centered around what type of system he will implement. Gallant noted that he won’t be changing what the Rangers did too much from last season.

“Let’s be honest, everybody has their systems and there’s not a lot of difference between them. We all do the same things,” he said honestly. “It’s about executing, believing in your system and getting the guys to buy in.”

In the end, Gallant stated over and over again that his goal is to make the Rangers the hardest working team in the NHL, and he will need 23 men to do it.

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