Continuing on a topic we broached yesterday, there is growing momentum behind the idea that Glen Sather may be “looking for another top-tier center before the trade deadline”:http://www.nydailynews.com/sports/hockey/rangers/2008/01/31/2008-01-31_decision_time_for_rangers_glen_sather-2.html whether it’s Mats Sundin, David Vyborny, or even Peter Forsberg (a personal favorite since Zip and I stockpiled him in our fantasy draft).
Consider me skeptical, not only because the Rangers are believed to be handcuffed by their salary cap, but also because their most pressing need continues to be on their backline.
Plus, there is this: if the Rangers admirably distanced themselves from their mercenary culture coming out of the lockout, then any sort of blockbuster move at the deadline strikes me as a troubling regression. You could make the argument that signings of Scott Gomez and Chris Drury fall into the same category. The difference is both those moves were made with the long-term in mind.
Now, though, a Forsberg or Sundin reintroduces the old Rangers notion that if a team full of stars is underachieving, the only answer is to go out and get more.
Now, that being said, I’m about to contradict myself. In the same story above, John Dellapina mentions the addition of another center may be a way to take some pressure off Chris Drury by moving him back to wing. I’m OK with that.
What’s interesting about Drury is that he more than adequately satisfies two important job descriptions of a center—taking face-offs, and serving as a down low presence in the defensive zone. But it is the role of playmaker—and finisher, for that matter—where Drury is clearly struggling.
It is quite possible that a move to wing would free Drury up to play a more unencumbered game, which he clearly needs at this point.
Either way, as much as heat as the guy is taking, and I’m hearing it more and more at games, you will never hear me bash Drury outright for the simple reason that the guy is so clearly trying to make a difference on every shift.
That’s not to excuse his lackluster performance so far. This isn’t Little League, after all (something Drury knows a little about). But it does mean cutting him some slack.