Will Rangers see David Quinn as the head coach to complete the shaken rebuild?

Rangers head coach David Quinn

Eric Hartline-USA TODAY Sports

While player after player took the virtual position for the New York Rangers exit interviews on Monday, head coach David Quinn has been a notable absence; not made available to the media.

The Blueshirts’ season ended on Saturday night as they technically missed the playoffs for a fourth straight year, even though they were eliminated from the Stanley Cup qualifiers last season in the NHL’s extended return to playoffs of his COVID-19 break.

Quinn has been at the helm of the Rangers for each of the past three seasons – the burgeoning Boston University coach becoming the face behind the bench for a team who admitted they would be rebuilding while emphasizing the aggregation of promising young talents to be put in place. lasting success.

All things considered, Rangers are ahead of the rebuilding schedule after this famous letter was sent to fans in 2018. They signed Artemi Panarin, acquired two young major prospects in Kaapo Kakko and Alexis Lafreniere in the draft, have recruited from young major defenders to Adam Fox, K’Andre Miller and Ryan Lindgren.

However, a fifth place finish this year in hockey’s toughest division which had four playoff spots this season was not enough to save the jobs of president John Davidson and general manager Jeff Gorton, who were so fired. shocking days before the end of the regular season.

Under normal circumstances, the head coach would be another casualty when a team cleans the house. Still, Quinn is still here, at least for now, as new chairman and CEO Chris Drury holds the fate of the 54-year-old in his hands.

It’s here that he sees Quinn going 96-87-25 as the Rangers head coach while somewhat respecting his original bill of being the guy to develop young New York talent. Fox and Miller are rising stars on the blue line, but Kakko and Lafreniere have left a lot to be desired.

“He’s helped me a lot, for sure,” said Lafreniere. “Just coming here at 19 you need people to help you and he has been one of them who has really helped me throughout the season.”

“From day one they just insisted that I was a complete player,” added Fox. “They knew I could defend. They helped me raise my game. ”

But the main theme of Rangers’ end-of-season media availability was that this team isn’t content with moral wins or getting closer to the playoffs.

“Our attitude, right now when we leave the ice, is that we make the playoffs next year,” said veteran forward Chris Kreider. “That’s our goal in everything we do, everything we work on over the summer before the preseason will be built in that direction.

“Talking is not expensive. It’s something we’ve been talking about and said we want to do for a while. And now we need to act on it and prepare over this summer to show up and be ready. to do it.

For now, it remains to be seen if Drury truly believes Quinn can be the navigator to lead the Rangers to this hopeful destination.

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