Chris Drury Makes His “Deschyshn”: Leschyshyn In; Othmann Out, “The Wallflower” Kaapo Kakko Ready To Make Love to the Boards Again, “LAVY LOUNGES,” The Real “BABY TROUBA” Expected Any Day Now; Robertson Recalled, Upcoming Site & Social Media Changes & More

It’s been a busy past 48-hours for general manager Chris Drury and his New York Rangers. That said, no major foot has fallen just yet (a trade for help and/or addressing Filip Chytil’s concussion) – and where the results of these next three games to be played in four nights’ time may change that.

Greetings and salutations everyone and welcome to another blog here on Let’s hope that we’re not “Singing The Blues” in 24-hours’ time!

Just a quick hitter tonight in order to prevent a 50,000 word-count tomorrow following Blues vs. Blueshirts, aka “The Emile Francis Cup.”

By now, you readers, the most intelligent fans that the Rangers have, already heard the “big” news – “The Brennan Othmann Era” only lasted for three games – but where let’s face it – such an era hasn’t truly begun – or at least not yet with the varsity club.


On Monday night, following the Rangers getting embarrassed on home ice by the Vancouver Canucks to a tune of 6-3 ( ), I predicted that Othmann would be returned to Hartford come Tuesday morning.

Here’s your reminder in case you forgot:

The second when I saw Othmann’s blank and vacant stare when riding the bench on Monday night, I knew that it was only a matter of time before he went back howlin’ with the ‘Pack – and really and as previously said from day one on this site – that’s the best course of action for him this season. Photo Credit: M$GN

For the sake of posterity, here’s how the Rangers broke the news at 10AM Tuesday morning:

There’s no reason to fully dissect Othmann’s demotion back to Hartford since everything that I’ve been saying on this site all season, and following his call-up too, all played out on Tuesday morning.

(In other words, check this site’s archives for all of it.)

Simply stated: It just isn’t his time right now (and keep in mind – this is a “WIN NOW” team) and it only behooves both the team and the player for Othmann to get a full AHL season under his belt.

After all, haven’t we learned anything from Lias Andersson, Vitali Kravtsov, Kaapo Kakko and Alexis Lafreniere?

And for that matter, haven’t we learned anything from Will Cuylle, who spent a full season in Hartford, and who come Thursday night in St. Louis, is projected to join the BFF’s, Mika Zibanejad and Chris Kreider, on Laviolette’s second line?

Long story short?

Othmann got a taste of the show – and hopefully he’ll be devouring such a meal next season.

And for a man who uses many cliches on this site?

Here’s another:

“This isn’t goodbye, this is see you later.”

Parting thought?

Let him win a Calder Cup this season – and then hopefully win the Calder Trophy next season!

Moving on – as I really see this as a “non-story.”

After suffering a bad loss by the hands of the Carolina Hurricanes last week, the next day at practice, Laviolette opted for a full day of video review rather than a grueling and physical one-hour with his club. He pulled a 180 on Tuesday, where it was reported that he bag skated the team a bit – or as much as a head coach can “bag skate” a team in this era – as this practice wasn’t really the shades of former Ranger coaches such as Herb Brooks, Conn Smythe and Phil Watson.

On Tuesday morning, some twelve-hours removed from the loss to the ‘Nucks, the Rangers went back to the drawing board at their practice facility in Tarrytown, NY.

Of course, for the younger members of the beat, who just have tunnel-vision on individual players who are now just sprouting bits of pubic hair – their top story of the day was <GASP> – Kaapo Kakko was still skating with the team!

Throw the babies in the air!

If you solely went by the reporting of these birdbrains on the beat, hockey ignorami who are more focused on what they are having for dinner rather than what they are watching in front of them, then you would have thought that in order to win a Stanley Cup – then you need twenty players – and all at the age of twenty-years-old or younger.

But we already know that these dimwits aren’t qualified for the jobs that they presently hold, so there’s no need to go down this path again.

While these humps were acting like Sam Rosen raving about a Rangers’ opponent when talking about Kakko’s return; ignored was the fact that captain Jacob Trouba was missing from the practice.

The Rangers later announced that Trouba was out for a “personal reasons” – and much like K’Andre Miller a few weeks back – didn’t provide anything more than that.

However, and as it was also revealed by the club a few weeks back, Kelly Trouba, wife of Jacob, is due to have a baby sometime soon.

Since I’m not Stalk Boy Steven, meaning that I don’t chase players down for the placentas of their offspring, I have no clue what day or date that the Trouba’s are expecting their first child.

Furthermore, I’m just speculating that Trouba missed the practice because of baby business – as I can’t say with 100% certainty that this was the reason.

(However, I would bet on it – PROMO CODE: C-SECTION!)

But since Trouba regularly talks to the mealy-mouthed mooks on the beat following every game, then I’m sure that when he returns, that’s when he’ll shed some light – and especially since it’s mainly thought that this current absence is because of positive “personal reasons.”

And by 6PM Wednesday – my speculation on this matter was strengthened.

Also taking place at the practice?

Will Cuylle to the BFF line, Blake Wheeler to the bottom-six.

Here’s the Tuesday edition of “LAVY’S LOUNGE” for you below:

Since the beat reporters are obsessed with Kakko, there were a lot of questions about him, where in a response, Laviolette said that he wasn’t ready to return yet – but the return of the man who loves the yellow paint more than anyone else would be back soon.

(The response to this same question was later reversed some 24-hours later.)

And of course – not one word was uttered about the specifics of Kakko’s injury – but please – do gamble your life savings on these games!

(My snide remark aside – I’m sure that Kakko will talk about whatever it was once he’s firmly back into the fold.)

As far as making the change to his second line, Laviolette said that he wanted to get a new look, and since the team hadn’t had many full practices in a while, this was an opportunity to get a gander at #50 with #20 and #93.

And while the head coach was non-committal about the change, or at least he was verbally and/or literally – you also got the feeling that he was implying that he’d give Cuylle a shot with a line that has struggled to score even-strength goals all season.

(Plus: You don’t spend back-to-back practices with Cuylle skating with these guys, then to only return Wheeler to this line – or at least – not at the start of Thursday night’s game.)

And should you need Laviolette tell it to you, he also said that Othmann looked good in his first game (when the Rangers won – and of course), but how his impact lessened in the two games afterwards (when the Rangers lost – and of course).

But again, we all know the deal about Othmann – and I suspect that we will all be talking much more about him next season.

Following both the practice and the “LAVY’S LOUNGE,” come 5PM Tuesday (a new salary cap day in the NHL), the Rangers announced the following:

I have to be honest with you – I forgot that Jake Leschyshyn was still under the Rangers’ umbrella. Photo Credit: Getty Images

Since Kakko still isn’t ready to return just yet – or so we thought (and more on him below), G.M. Chris Drury was forced to replace Othmann with a warm-body – where this time – he did go with someone more suitable for a fourth-line plug role.

If you recall, Leschyshyn (whose last name I was able to spell correctly last season, but it’s been so long that I had to double-check it tonight!), formerly from Las Vegas (as was last year’s head coach, Gerard Gallant), then you will remember that the center scored zero goals in his thirteen games played last season.

For those who don’t know how he’s been doing this season with the Wolf Pack (and I had no clue either), here’s what the AHL affiliate had to say about the call-up, courtesy of :

HARTFORD, CT – New York Rangers President and General Manager Chris Drury announced today that the club has recalled forward Jake Leschyshyn from the AHL’s Hartford Wolf Pack.

Leschyshyn, 24, has appeared in 14 games with the Wolf Pack this season, scoring six points (3 g, 3 a). The 5’11”, 195-pound forward scored a pair of goals in the Wolf Pack’s 5-3 comeback victory over the Hershey Bears on Saturday night at the Giant Center.

This is Leschyshyn’s second season with the Wolf Pack. The native of Raleigh, NC, recorded 15 points (5 g, 10 a) in 18 games with the club during the 2022-23 campaign. He then went on to score three points (2 g, 1 a) in five Calder Cup Playoff games with the Wolf Pack.

Leschyshyn began the 2022-23 season with the NHL’s Vegas Golden Knights, appearing in 22 games with the team. He was claimed off waivers by the Rangers on January 11th, 2023, and skated in 13 games before his assignment to the Wolf Pack.

In his career, Leschyshyn has appeared in 76 career NHL games with the Golden Knights and Rangers, scoring six points (2 g, 4 a). He has also dressed in 169 career AHL contests with the Wolf Pack, Henderson Silver Knights, and Chicago Wolves, collecting 67 points (32 g, 35 a).

Leschyshyn was selected in the second round, 62nd overall, by the Golden Knights in the 2017 NHL Entry Draft.

In my eyes, I’m fine with this Othmann/Leschyshyn swap and for the reasons as mentioned above.

While I would’ve preferred either Adam Edstrom or Matt Rempe, both are currently out with injuries – so it wasn’t going to happen.

Also out with injury is Riley Nash, who perhaps “deserved” this call-up more than Leschyshyn.

And while you could make a case for other Packers, it really doesn’t make that much of a difference anyway – especially since Kakko’s return date may be this Sunday the latest, meaning that Leschyshyn won’t be around for “too” long – and for those who love too/to/two – as in “two” games.

Similar to other call-ups this season, this is just a way to reward another player in the organization with an NHL paycheck – and some games too.

Long story short – this wasn’t the worst “Deschyshyn” in the world – nor should it impact the Rangers’ bottom line.

After all, it’s up to everyone else, besides the top line, Jimmy Vesey and Will Cuylle, to bolster the offense.

So that was Tuesday.

Let’s now get into Wednesday.

Based on what Laviolette said on Wednesday, it’s looking like Kaapo Kakko will return to making passionate love to the boards once the Rangers return back to New York this Sunday, following their two-game road-trip (St. Louis and Washington). Then again, there’s a shot that the man with two goals in twenty games played returns on Thursday too. As they say, “we’ll see.”

Prior to their flight to Missouri, on Wednesday morning, the team reconvened in Tarrytown, NY – where not only was Kaako and Leschyshyn there – but Trouba and D.J. Mika were MIA.

While Trouba was still out for “personal reasons,” Zibanejad was ruled out with an illness.

Perhaps Mika worried himself sick when thinking about the idea of Kakko returning?

I kid, I kid – or am I?

This practice was less intense than the one that preceded it – and for the obvious reasons.

Following the skate, the head coach held another mandatory “LAVY’S LOUNGE.”

Here it is:

This was a very newsworthy edition of the bench boss’ banter.

Among the notable items, the following:

— Lavy said that Kakko was now day-to-day (he said this most infamous quote verbatim) – and with no restrictions to worry about whatsoever. In other words, “The Wallflower” could go back to dry-humping the boards around NHL rinks as soon as this Thursday night.

— However, Lavy also said that there would be a “welcoming back process” (I’m paraphrasing him, as he didn’t say this verbatim), where the approach is to be patient – which means that Kakko won’t be on the second line to start and he may not play back-to-back games either. Of course, and like anything else, this is all to be determined.

— On the Leschyshyn call-up, Lavy reiterated what he had said in the past about call-ups, where J.L. marks the fifth Wolf Pack forward recall this season.

“[Leschyshyn is] probably their top all-around player down there [Hartford] right now,” said P.L. on J.L.

— The head coach also mentioned that Tyler Pitlick is back to skating, albeit by his lonesome and not with the team, but they are hoping that he’ll be able to return soon.

— The rest of this press conference was hard to make out, because despite being a multi-billion dollar organization, the franchise never mics up the beat reporters – but then again – who wants to hear Moronic Mollie cackle like a diseased hyena throughout these daily chats with the coach?

I think all of us are expecting – and like the Trouba family – for Kelly to have the couple’s baby sometime soon – if not by the time that you read these words. Photo Credit: The Trouba’s

At 6PM Tuesday, and by the time that the Rangers had touch-downed in St. Louis, the club announced the following:

Granted, while Zac Jones (remember him?) still remains with the club, with a two-game road-trip next on the docket, it was imperative for the Blueshirts to recall a spare defenseman as an insurance policy (in case someone gets hurt and/or if K’Andre Miller needs another mental health break – and a break that may be needed after the game that he had on Monday night).

And who knows – maybe Robertson, who many are anxiously awaiting to see get a shot, does get a chance.

While such news hasn’t been confirmed as of this writing, it’s suspected that Trouba didn’t make the trip.

Again, while we can only speculate that the captain is about to have a real “BABY TROUBA” (as opposed to Braden Schneider, who proudly wears this nickname), it is thought, and just like Barclay Goodrow earlier this season, that Trouba is with his wife at the hospital.

As mentioned earlier this season when this news first broke (and as Kelly’s water is expected to break too!), congratulations to the captain and his wife.

And while in a bygone era, players would never miss a game for the birth of a child (Phil Esposito talks about this topic in-depth in his own autobiography); as someone who is “old-school” – I do like that teams give their players time off for paternity leave.

After all, you’ll forget about one meaningless regular season game (the equivalent of a day at work for us regular Joe Schmos) – and especially during the dog days of winter.

You’ll never forget about the birth of your child.

And yep, and as mentioned many times this season – Peter Laviolette is a big family man – and always stresses the importance of his own family too.

With that known, I’m sure that it makes it easier for these players to take off, as they know they have the full support of their head coach whenever asking him.

And this too: Expect Artemi Panarin to go through the same thing sometime this February.

Final thought:

With Goodrow, Zibanejad, Panarin and Trouba having babies this season – after being screwed by the Devils this May – the Rangers did some screwing themselves!


The Rangers, 8-7-1 in their last sixteen games played (a winning percentage of .500), need to go back to their winning ways – and back to posting pictures like this one! Photo Credit: NYR

Going into Thursday night, we don’t know with 100% certainty what the lines will be, as the “Kakko Factor” remains as the wild card.

But assuming that he doesn’t play, as the Rangers look to ease him in and get him some more practice reps, then we should see a line-up like this (and where I’m also assuming that Mika will be healthy enough to play too):

FIRST LINE: Panarin/Trocheck/Lafreniere

SECOND LINE: Kreider/Mika/Cuylle

THIRD LINE: Vesey/Goodrow/Wheeler

FOURTH LINE: Brodzinski/Bonino/Leschyshyn

FIRST PAIR: Lindgren/Fox

SECOND PAIR: Gustafsson/Schneider

THIRD PAIR: Miller/Jones



Coming soon: The Tenth Annual Mid-Season Report Card!

Last but not least before going home – some site “programming” notes.

While I’ll be back Thursday for a Rangers/Blues GAME REVIEW – and it’s my goal to post the 2023-24 Mid-Season Report Card on Friday too; I may take Saturday off, as I’m attending a Rangers/Capitals watch party at my local watering hole – and where I have to attend – as no joke (and this may tell you about my alcohol indulgence too) – they have installed my own personal Labatt Blue draft beer tap!

My personal boozing aside; as you already know – I don’t run ads on this site, nor have an eccentric billionaire who funds me either – so in other words – I do have to work a “real job” in order to make a living!

After all, how else am I going to pay for these beers?

(And then there’s that whole thing about having a roof over my head too!)

This is my way of telling you that my real-life job hours are changing sometime soon (within the next two weeks – if not next Tuesday the earliest) and where I’ll be working from the hours of 3PM-11:30PM.

It’s a hell of a job offer, and while I can’t say that I’m a fan of these hours – I am a fan of the pay!

Better than that?

My commute is now twenty-minutes round-trip, rather than two-and-a-half-hours. And the fact that I don’t have to go to Manhattan anymore?

Then I’d have to be an idiot to turn this job down!

(Like many – I can’t stand going to Manhattan anymore. Between the protests that delay trains at Penn Station, the junkies, the smell of pot and urine permeating my nostrils and all of the migrants clogging the streets – it’s hell.)

As a result, my days of “live-tweeting” these weekday games (blog notes) are coming to an end – or at least for the time being.

Moving forward, and because I don’t expect to have much downtime at this new gig – it’s my idea to go “dark” on social media whenever the Rangers play. (NO SPOILERS!)

Then, when I get home, I’ll fire up the DVR and then do my usual GAME REVIEW.

For the thousands-and-thousands who read this site – you won’t notice that much of a difference – especially since I post these blogs way into the wee hours of the morning anyway.

For the 5,000+ followers that I have on the Tweeter – you will notice a difference – but just know that I’m not ignoring you!

You will also think that all of my tweets are delayed – as they’ll be “three-hours late!”

The one thing that I’m worried about?

The playoffs.

But much like the Rangers, I’ll worry about that once we get there.

And perhaps “mental health” and “paternity leave” will be acceptable excuses on those nights!

See ya tomorrow night, after Blueshirts v. Blues.

PLUGS TIME! (Buy a book and support my Rangers’ induced therapy bills. After all, I don’t run ads on this site!)

On Tuesday, January 9th, our friends over at “The Blueshirt Underground Show” returned with an all new episode. To watch/listen, click the play button below:

My fourth title and tenth book is now available!

“The Top 100 Villains of New York Rangers History,” is now available for sale!

For complete information, please visit:

The hardcover version of my first book, available now at

My second plug of tonight’s blog – the mandatory plug for my book, “The New York Rangers Rink of Honor and the Rafters of Madison Square Garden.”

As mentioned previously, the book is now available in hardcover, in paperback and in Kindle formats. To purchase a copy of the book, visit this link:

For those still looking for signed paperback versions of the book, I have re-ordered more copies. I now have a few signed copies for sale at $25 a pop (includes shipping price) through me directly. Here is all the information on that:

Order “The New York Rangers Rink of Honor and the Rafters of Madison Square Garden” Book Today

My four-volume set of books, “One Game at a Time – A Season to Remember,” is a game-by-game recount of the Rangers 2021-22 campaign.

My second title as an author, “One Game at a Time – A Season to Remember,” is now available in eBook, paperback and hardcover formats.

To obtain signed copies, visit:

To purchase all four volumes on Amazon, visit: – “One Game at a Time.”

The greatest volume-set of books on Rangers’ history today!

“Tricks of the Trade – A Century-Long Journey Through Every Trade Made In New York Rangers’ History,” a four-volume set of books that meticulously covers every trade made in franchise history, is now on sale.

All four volumes of the title can be purchased on and are presented in three different formats – eBook, paperback and hardcover.

To purchase Volume I: Conn Smythe (1926) – Craig Patrick (1986), visit

To purchase Volume II: Phil Esposito (1986) – Neil Smith (2000), visit

To purchase Volume III: Glen Sather (2000-2015), visit

To purchase Volume IV: Jeff Gorton (2015) – Chris Drury (2022), visit

To purchase signed copies of all four volumes, visit

Here are my last few blogs, in case you missed them:

NYR/VAN 1/8 Review: CZAR IGOR and the Defensemen No Bueno in Litmus Test/Wake-Up Call Loss; At Least The Goal a Game 2.0 Line Remains On Fire, J.T. Miller’s “Anti-Ranger Hat Trick;” K’Andre Miller’s Anti-Good Game, Time To Address The Concussion Elephant in The Room; Drury’s Trade Deadline, #30 vs #31, Lavy’s Line Juggling, Othmann, The DAILY DISCLAIMER, M$GN & More

NYR/MTL 1/6 Review: Sam “Dikembe Mutombo” Montembeault Channels Every Canadiens’ Goaltending Legend in Franchise History; Blueshirts Get “GOALIED” in a Wild & Entertaining Loss, Alarming Trends, A “Stolen Point,” Alexis “Julien Gauthier” Lafreniere’s Woes with Finishing Continue; GAG LINE 2.0 Scores Again, The Persona Non Grata Jim Ramsay, Will “Brennan Othmann Who?” Cuylle Shines, Lavy Set To Make NHL History, Rangers’ Alum Brendan Smith Top Talk of the NHL, M$GN & More

NYR/CHI 1/4 Review: BEST IN THE WORLD BLUESHIRTS Scalp Worst in the World Blackhawks; Busy Rangers’ News Day Too, Recap of Messier & Lundqvist’s One-on-One Chat, Panarin Snubbed for All-Star Game But The Valid Explanation on Why; Vote For Trocheck, The Othmann One-Game Evaluations Are In (Outstanding!); Don’t Forget About Cuylle, Kakko Nearing Return, GAG Line 2.0, Miserable M$GN aka NBC Chicago & More

If you haven’t already, subscribe to this blog for the next update:

Now on sale!

Don’t forget to order my recently released four-volume set of books, “Tricks of the Trade!”

If you don’t order through me, all four volumes are now available on

For more details, check out:

Thanks for reading.


Sean McCaffrey

@NYCTHEMIC on the Tweeter machine

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