The Tom Renney era is over. The Rangers coach was given the ax today (along with assistant Perry Pearn). Out of all the people responsible for the disaster that the 2008-09 Blueshirts have become, Renney is probably the least culpable. I’d put James Dolan (does even know he owns the team?), Glen Sather and the players all ahead of the now-former coach on the who’s-to-blame list.
Renney brought respectability back to the Rangers after they missed the playoffs for seven straight seasons. In his three full seasons as coach, Renney guided the team to the postseason all three years. Sather blundered his way through free agency the last few years, with the regrettable signings of Scott Gomez, Chris Drury and Wade Redden, not to mention smaller mistakes like Patrick Rissmiller (remember him?). The team president is the one who saddled Renney with the poorly constructed squad that doesn’t have enough players that can score or enough defensive-style players to play a defensive-style game.
Renney surely has made mistakes, and is no motivator. The team has no fight, no passion and no energy. The Rangers look dead right now. If the coach is supposed to motivate his team and have them skate through a brick wall for him, well, that wasn’t happening with Renney. He hand-picks who he wants to hold accountable (see Prucha, Petr), and while putting his lines in a blender almost every shift, let alone game, he puts out the same deadbeats on the ice power play after feable power play.
Cerebral and thoughtful, Renney is probably too unemotional for his own good. It looks like John Tortorella will be his replacement. He’s everything Tom Renney isn’t – fiery, passionate and emotional. It should be interesting and maybe even fun to see what he does with this lifeless bunch of mediocrity.
You can’t fire the players and nobody’s going to fire Glen Sather or James Dolan, so Tom Renney was the one who had to go.
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