Let’s preface this by saying that virtually everybody deserves a second chance, even a guy like New York Rangers defenseman Tony DeAngelo and particularly in a cancel culture society way too eager to see people fall. And the Blueshirts defenseman is talented enough that he’s absolutely going to get the aforementioned second chance at some point despite multiple off-the-ice issues that have cropped up during both his junior days and his pro hockey career.
But I’m really not sure how much the Larry Brooks puff piece this weekend helped him out when he ended it with “I’m just a guy that wants to play hockey.” Because no, no you’re not. If Tony DeAngelo was a guy that “just wanted to play hockey”, he wouldn’t have blown through stop signs when his Rangers bosses told him to quit it with the social media posts and confrontations with his teammates. DeAngelo clearly couldn’t do that regardless of what actually happened, and that’s why the Rangers want to deal him, have already washed their hands of him within the organization and are attempting this image rehab in hopes another NHL team will give up something of value in trade for him.
Wasn’t this the same player that insiders swore teams were climbing over each other to acquire just a week or two ago when the Rangers said he was persona non grata?
Yeah, this kind of story wouldn’t be necessary at all if that were the case.
Instead, the Rangers are just hoping they can get something for him before they have to buy him out and pay the salary cap costs that go along with it. So, this humble hockey writer absolutely thinks that Tony DeAngelo can, and should, get a second chance to prove his checkered past doesn’t dictate his future in the league.
Everybody can change, learn and grow, and nothing in Tony DeAngelo’s past should make him an NHL pariah by any means.
But the fact that the 25-year-old had to proclaim in a story that “I’m not a racist, I’m not an extremist and I’m not an insurrectionist”, it really tells you everything you need to know. DeAngelo isn’t playing the “victim card” in his own words, but he isn’t exactly taking full accountability for his actions and past, either, when the excuses were flying all around the Brooks column attempting to rehab his image.
Maybe sitting out this entire season isn’t such a bad idea for DeAngelo, where he can truly think deeply about his actions, his past and what led him to this point in an NHL career, where you have to work pretty hard to be ostracized by the entire league?
That goes doubly so for a talented, young former first round pick D-man that had 15 goals and 58 points last season for the Blueshirts. The fact is DeAngelo is about to move onto his fourth NHL organization in the last five years, and that says trouble to NHL teams in a way that no high-gloss reclamation article is ever going to dispel in this day and age.
The best thing DeAngelo can do is think, learn and use his actions moving forward to prove he’s ready to be a better person and pro.
Now, on to the puck links:
*FOH (Friend of Haggs) Adrian Dater has the story of how “MacKinnon Crunch” came about. This sounds like the best thing since Flutie Flakes. (Colorado Hockey Now)
*Jack Eichel is using the mandatory COVID-19 quarantine time with the Buffalo Sabres to hit the reset button after a rough start to the year. (Buffalo Hockey Beat)
*Pretty cool to see things are really starting to happen out at the Lake Tahoe site for next week’s outdoor games.
— NHL on NBC Sports (@NHLonNBCSports) February 12, 2021
*The Pittsburgh Penguins have been linked to several goalies in trade talks, and now it’s with Anaheim Ducks netminder John Gibson. My partner-in-crime Jimmy Murphy has more in this week’s “Off the Record.” (Boston Hockey Now)
*Speaking of the Penguins, Brandon Tanev said he’s going to continue to play physical hockey for the Pens even as the games pile up later in the season. (Pittsburgh Hockey Now)
*The Bruins admitted to having tired legs and some mental fatigue in losing the sixth and final consecutive road game overt the last couple of weeks, a 4-2 loss vs. the Islanders. They did look tired. (Boston Hockey Now)
*The Washington Capitals continue to lead the entire league in shenanigans and ballyhoo prior to puck drop.
Did you miss this?
We missed this 🥰 pic.twitter.com/zjZ64IC3lX
— Washington Capitals (@Capitals) February 14, 2021
*For something completely different: I have seen the Zack Snyder trailer for Justice League on HBO/Max and it looks like typical Zack Snyder hot garbage to me.
— Joe Haggerty (@HackswithHaggs) February 14, 2021