Gerard Gallant was furious.
The Rangers head coach had snogged former Rangers defenseman Tony DeAngelo as the teams left the ice on Sunday after a scrum started with a late Domi family cross-check from Max Domi to Ryan Lindgren shortly after the last horn the Rangers had finished Game 3 wins against the Hurricanes.
He made it known that he didn’t like what was happening, calling Domi’s cross-check a “cheap shot”.
Then, in those situations, he flexed the Rangers’ strongest muscle, almost like a threat.
“We’ve got the guy who can handle all his guys if we want to,” Gallant joked.
This guy? His name is Ryan Reaves.
“I’m going to do my thing, run over some people and face them,” Reaves said when asked if Gallant was indirectly referring to him. “Try to achieve the same result as [Sunday] night: another win.”
In a best-of-seven playoff series, tension is bound to arise given how often teams compete and what type of hockey is typically played at this time of year. But it was slow progress in Rangers’ second-round matchup with the Hurricanes.
Things boiled over when Domi landed that late cross check on the lower back of Lindgren, who appears to be holding himself together with tape and glue as he struggles through a lower body injury that has been plaguing him since Game 1 of Round 1. That’s probably why Rangers reacted the way they did.
So will the emotion and intensity spill over into Game 4 after the final whistle in Game 3?
“I hope so,” Reaves said.
“I don’t know what he’s waiting for,” Canes coach Rod Brind’Amour told reporters. “Everyone will do what they do this time of year. And I hope that[AndreiSvechnikovgoals”[AndreiSvechnikovscoresgoals”[AndreiSvechnikovToreschießt“[AndreiSvechnikovscoresgoals”
The 6-foot-1,225-pound Reaves said he wished he’d gotten to the Domi Lindgren scrum faster. However, if you rewind the tape, Reaves was right there trying to get through, but was held back by a referee as Lindgren dealt with the situation himself. Still, Reaves knows his role and hasn’t lost sight of it since the Golden Knights traded him to Rangers last offseason.
Reaves is unlikely to provoke a fight just to fight. It’s not his style anymore since he donned a red, white and blue sweater. He has only dropped the gloves twice after being challenged by an opponent. But Domi and DeAngelo, who specifically targeted Alexis Lafreniere with his post-game tweet, should expect to get some extra heavy hits.
“I don’t want to say anything stupid here,” Reaves said. “You never want to see guys chirp your bench. I was on the ice for that, I wish I’d seen that, I’ve been looking more at the Domi Lindgren thing. I’m sure the guys won’t shy away from checking out these guys just like everyone else in their lineup.”
Gallant, who has made it clear in more ways than one that he firmly believes the game ends after the final whistle, said end-of-game shenanigans were a thing of the past and there was no need to address that with the team during training on Monday. The coach also stressed the importance of not doing anything stupid and staying focused on the evening of the series.
That being said, Gallant conceded that there’s no harm in having a little more evil in a series. In fact, he thinks it helps his team because he likes it when his players get “a little pissed off” every now and then. It’s also because Rangers have a player like Reaves.
Because of this, President and General Manager Chris Drury acquired Reaves and subsequently signed him to an additional one-year contract. Because of this, Gallant indirectly referred to the 35-year-old enforcer when answering questions about the post-game brouhaha.
“I never said his name,” Gallant said with a smile.
But everyone knows who he meant. Everyone knows these are the kinds of situations that brought Reaves to New York. Everyone knows to keep an eye on Tuesday night at 75 Garden.
https://nypost.com/2022/05/23/rangers-have-a-ryan-reaves-plan-to-deal-with-hurricanes/ Rangers come up with a plan from Ryan Reaves to deal with hurricanes