Petr Prucha Playing Like There's No Tom-orrow!

Tonight's Healthy ScratchesCorrespondent IOctober 10, 2009

PITTSBURGH, PA - OCTOBER 07:  Petr Prucha #16 of the Phoenix Coyotes celebrates his second period power play goal against the Pittsburgh Penguins at Mellon Arena on October 07, 2009 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.  (Photo by Justin K. Aller/Getty Images)

It has been 182 days since Tom Renney and his awful suit collection have been removed from behind the New York Rangers' bench. Yet, I still cannot get him out of my mind.

Is it because the Rangers are out to a 3-1 record? No.

Is it because their power play, although only 3-for-20, looks dramatically different? Nope.

Is it because Michal Rozsival was actually benched after playing poorly, rather than being rewarded with more minutes in crucial situations? Not even that.

You see, the reason that Tom Renney has been giving me night terrors all the way from Edmonton, (where he landed an assistant coaching job) has nothing to do with this year’s New York Rangers. No, the reason, is Petr Prucha.

After watching Prucha’s highlight-reel goal against the Pittsburgh Penguins on Wednesday, it saddens me to think what could have been, if he were only given a fair chance in the Rangers lineup.

Witnessing Prucha play for parts of four seasons in New York, it was clear that he was a player who never took a shift off, had no fear, and above-average offensive ability. Yet, on a Rangers team which lacked heart, a full 60-minute effort and scoring, Prucha found himself riding the bench more than not.

I mean, it’s only logical to take a player who scored 26 of his first 59 goals with the man-advantage off the power play, right? It’s not like Tom Renny’s team was ranked second-to-last on the power play or anything…

No, rather than reward Prucha with power-play time for never taking a shift off, and at times, being the hardest-working, hardest-hitting forward on the ice, Renney decided to place players such as Aaron Voros and Jason Krog ahead of Prucha on the depth chart.

Through three games with the Phoenix Coyotes this season, Prucha has 1G and 1A and is seeing significant playing time, both at even-strength and on the power play.

Barring an injury for a lengthy period of time, it’s plausible for Prucha to post an impressive 30-plus goal season, and totaling over 50 points, something the Rangers could have desperately used down the stretch last season.

Related

    Why Having a Superstar in the Rangers Net Will Never Be Enough

    New York Rangers logo
    New York Rangers

    Why Having a Superstar in the Rangers Net Will Never Be Enough

    Daniel Lodato
    via FOREVER BLUESHIRTS

    Rangers announce preseason schedule

    New York Rangers logo
    New York Rangers

    Rangers announce preseason schedule

    Newsday
    via Newsday

    Rangers Should Get Tavares at Any Cost

    New York Rangers logo
    New York Rangers

    Rangers Should Get Tavares at Any Cost

    Evan Peterson
    via The Hockey Writers

    Sens Face Long Odds in ‘Winning’ Karlsson Trade

    NHL logo
    NHL

    Sens Face Long Odds in ‘Winning’ Karlsson Trade

    James O'Brien
    via ProHockeyTalk