Has Sather “cemented” his legacy? That depends…

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Sure, it’s possible that Glen Sather is prepared to step aside as Rangers president and GM to make way for Brian Burke, an idea that has been given life by “ESPN.com’s Scott Burnside”:http://sports.espn.go.com/nhl/columns/story?columnist=burnside_scott&id=3699161 and others.

Sather is 65. He’s already reached the mountaintop a number of times as an NHL coach and GM, and in Burke, who this week relinquished his post in Anaheim, he would have a worthy, charismatic successor. Throw in the fact that the Rangers have declined my request to comment on Sather’s near- or long-term future, and it’s not something anyone can dismiss until Burke does actually land elsewhere.

Either way, where I stumble is the idea that Sather has “cemented” his legacy in the NHL, which is the rationale a source gave Burnside for Sather possibly wanting to retire. While no one can take away the record Sather compiled in winning five Stanley Cups in Edmonton and a Canada Cup for Canada, his tenure in New York is mostly an incomplete book.

The team is on better footing than it was, of course. Just as Sather was widely blamed for the disaster that was his first few seasons in Manhattan, he deserves credit for bringing the franchise back to respectability. But three early-round playoff exits don’t necessarily constitute a triumphant reign here, especially when you consider how high he set the bar in his previous stop.

Of course, maybe Sather senses that these Rangers are not prepared to get over the hump, and he’d prefer to quit while he’s at least salvaged his good name. It’s at least a theory. But I’ve always operated under the assumption that Sather still feels he has some work left to do. And given that these Rangers, flawed as may be, have proven to at least be competitive this year, I don’t think he’s prepared to jump ship just yet.

Bear in mind that when Don Maloney left for Phoenix at the end of the 2006-07 seasons, one of his was reasons was he didn’t get the sense that Sather was willing to surrender the GM chair anytime soon.

That was nearly two years ago, so Sather certainly could have changed his mind since then. But it’s doubtful — not with the Rangers as close as they are, not with the job still incomplete.

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47 Comments

  1. I just want everyone to know I’m taking a bunch of kids camping in the rain this weekend Fri to sunday. The weather is supposed to be crappy and its my birthday tomorrow…So I’m gonna miss the game obviously and after I leave the office tonight I won’t be here to see “naked Larry” in the upper right corner of my screen.
    just had to let that out!!!

  2. doodie machetto on

    I missed the naked guy. I suppose that’s a good thing.

    Good luck to any future lawyers getting their bar results today.

  3. Yeah that naked guy was NSFW! I had to keep window closed so small, didn’t want people to get the wrong impression.

    Kinda off subject but i bought NHL 09 for Playstation last night. There are a few problems i have
    No Callahan or Korpedo and Dubinsky has a full on beard. Very weird.

  4. NYR56, you need to download the roster update, the team is complete in it..also, while most players likenesses are good, some they just gave generic likenesses (rozsival, dubi come to mind) however some (Naslund, Zherdev, Drury) for example look really good.

  5. The only thing I hate, is when you make the lines the REAL LINES that the rangers play with, they give all of the time to the first line of Naslund Gomez Drury.

  6. Oh man, i use line changes. I just hate that i had to create those two guys. Voros is pretty weak in the game. I got pummeled by Gratton in Game 1 vs Tampa…Roberts did same in Game 2

  7. I mean when you play online against someone. I always choose quickmatch ranked. I never thought of using manual line changes for that. Can you?

  8. Good question…haven’t tried online in a few years. I will be up and running tonight and will let you know.

    (i will never grow up)

  9. Yeah man, I am 31 with 2 kids, and I won’t either. My argument for playing video games still is this. Everyone’s parents would have been playing video games still at this point too, if they were raised on them like we were. I feel this is a valid argument. Right? Who’s with me?

  10. NASTY

    I know what you mean. Im in my 2nd season in Franchise mode, and all the 4th liners wanna get traded cause they get crappy ice time. I don’t use the new controls so i don’t have control over the lines.

    EA sucks, in 08 you get to manually change your lines when you play with the basic controls, but now for some reason in 09 you cant do it. They’re forcing you to use the fancy controls, and they’re a bitch to deal with.

    NYR56

    Do you have it for PS3, or PS2 ? If you have it for Ps2 then you have to buy this wire thingy, and hook it up to the comp and download the rosters from EA.com i think. But if you have PS3, then go to Online, then go to any online game mode, and they’ll ask you if you wanna update the rosters, then you’ll have everyone on the team. Except they don’t update the Wolf Pack so you’ll have to create Sags, and Weise, Soryal, and a few others.

    Also on one of the Czech league teams, they have Tomas Kundratek (this years 3rd or 4th pick) you can trade him to the Wolf Pack.

  11. leet his the man on

    xbox 360 had cally and korpedo in the AHL. Its suks how in be a pro you cant edit anything. Lundquvist had the most wins in reg season and ended up winning the Veznia but theybstarted Valiquette in every playoff game. also a lot of people are given visors who dont wear them but still great gameplay.

  12. It seems like EA just makes hockey games just so they can get them out of the way. They don’t do anything special with them, every game there’s something wrong.

    For anyone who doesn’t know this, there’s a glitch in the game, when you shoot the puck, and the goalie makes the save, and holds on to the puck, go up to him, and use the poke check right in front of him before the whistle blows, and sometimes the puck will go right into the net. That’s how i score my goals with Orr.

  13. I'll Take anyone! on

    Sather has learned to work within the parameters of crazy ownership…. The volatile days are over as he knows how to deal with it.
    He has been mailing it in for years.
    I would take anyone but Burke might not be a good fit with the owner. If I was Burke I would take Toronto as they have no place to go but up.

  14. I don’t know Orr. EA Sports’ NHL 08 won like every single video game award there is last year. I think like 7 awards in total.

    There are definitely a few gliches, but every game has them.

    I play a few times a night against my brother. We have a makeshift handwritten standings. Whoever wins the most games gets home ice advantage and the choice of their own team in a 7 game playoff 2 weeks before the new game comes out. This decides the “champion” of our apartment.

    Needless to say, there’s been some heated battles en route to deciding “who’s better”. Right now, that person is me.

  15. Brian Burke is a genius. When you draft guys like Ryan Getzlaf and have the gaul to sign guys like Scott Neidermeyer and let guys like Matheau Schneider go, you know what you’re doing.

  16. NOONAN

    Slats might have had one of the worst picks in NHL history with Jessiwoman, and a bad pick with Montoya, but at the same time didn’t Burke draft Bobby “Bust” Ryan, who was selected #2 overall behind SIDNEY CROSBY !!!!

    Ouch. He’s still pretty high on the kid, but i don’t see anything special. Maybe the fact that Crosby came after him.

    Kopitar was in that draft, Setoguchi who’s having a great year so far with the Sharks, Jack Johnson who’s a pretty good D-man, and a big part of the Kings future, which im sure the Canes will regret giving up, even though they won a cup that year.

    Burke is a smart guy, he’s tough. I wouldn’t mind him replacing Slats, but i think the job will go to Messier, not Burke. But then again you never know.

  17. I’m not prepared to give Slats any credit for the Rangers’ success in recent years. The credit all goes to the lockout and subsequent salary cap. If there were no salary cap, he’d still be bringing in the Lindros’s and Fleury’s of the world for ridiculous amounts of money instead of developing prospects. I don’t care who replaces him. Good riddance.

  18. I wouldn’t want Maloney here either. He still thinks Monty can be a starter, which i don’t agree with at all.

    Ugh, i hope Korpedo turns out to be a damn good players, even if he’s a 25 goal, 50 point guy for the rest of his career. It just sucks to think we could have had Mike Green !! There’s your real PP QB.

    If Caps get a solid goalie, they’re gonna be a fuggin horrifying team to play against if they’re not already. Ovechkin, Semin, Backstrom, Green. Massive talent.

  19. KPH

    Yeah, he did bring in a lot of shitty players, overpaid vets who seem like they’re only around to add some more numbers to their stats. But he did do some damn smart things. Trading shitty Anson Carter for Jagr, who people thought lost the talent, only to have a 50+ goal, 100+ point season bringing Nyr to the playoffs, then trading a 4th liner, and two prospects for Avery who was awesome for the team, then trading a decent 2nd pair d-man for a kid like Zherdev who has the potential to be a 40+ goal scorer. Along with a couple of signings where he overpaid, and a couple of signings that meant nothing to Nyr fans like Voros.

    He’s done pretty good here the last 4 seasons. The first few were bad, but he’s made up for it. We haven’t won a cup yet, but the important thing is we have a winning team, that has the potential to win the cup, and more importantly, a fuggin future.

    That’s good in my book.

  20. I don’t care about anything any more – my little boy just took the phone off his Grandma and said to me “Hello Daddy” – it made me melt.

    I love you all….

  21. Sather has been involved in professional hockey since 1964…as a player, coach, GM, etc. He off-seasons in NYC, Palm Springs and has a house in Banff, Canada. Hockey is his life.

    Burke has a Canadian wife who wants to go back to work (can only work in Canada), has two kids under the age of 5, and is committed to Team USA in Vancouver 2010 (Olympics)…..he is headed for Toronto….

  22. Shanahan Update
    “In a roster move that could clear the way for free agent left wing Brendan Shanahan to become a Flyer, defenseman Lasse Kukkonen was placed on NHL waivers Thursday.

    Kukkonen cleared waivers and played center for the Flyers for the first time ever against the Penguins.

    If he is assigned to the AHL Phantoms, his $875,000 contract will come off the Flyers’ salary cap.

    With Kukkonen off the books, the available space under the NHL’s $57.6 million limit would increase from about $800,000 to $1.675 million. That would make room for Shanahan, who is believed to be seeking a one-year contract worth about $1.3 million. Shanahan could decide as early as today or Saturday where he will play this season. The Flyers are believed to be at the top of his list, followed by Pittsburgh and Chicago.

    Shanahan’s agent Rick Curran has not returned messages left by the Courier-Post the past two days.
    Staff writer Chuck Gormley contributed to this report.”

    http://www.courierpostonline.com/article/20081114/SPORTS04/811140358/1002/SPORTS

  23. Burke is way overrated.
    All the draft picks of ducks cup team was Murray’s.
    You don’t have to be a genius to sign Neidermier and Pronger (who wanted out of edmonton)
    Look at Vancouver it’s all his work.

  24. Money talks… all that is fine and dandy but when someone flashes a monster check in front of you, that’s usually what holds the most weight in your decision making.

    If sltas were to vowge for Burke, and really did want to step down, Dolan would take him on as he LOVES slats and respects his opinion.

    For those of you who think it’s harder to work for Dolan in NY as it is for anyone in Toronto, you’re surely mistaken. While Dolan might be the worst owner in professional sports, Toronto is hockey’s captial and you don’t come under a closer microscope anywhere else.

  25. Staal Wart November 14th, 2008 at 9:53 am
    “I just want everyone to know I’m taking a bunch of kids camping in the rain this weekend Fri to sunday. The weather is supposed to be crappy and its my birthday tomorrow…So I’m gonna miss the game obviously and after I leave the office tonight I won’t be here to see “naked Larry” in the upper right corner of my screen.
    just had to let that out!!!”

    _Please don’t insult the “NAKED GUY” his childhood was rough as is… and his name is Marty… ;0

  26. Here’s Ulf Samuellson on defensemen today:

    “…nowadays you need pure skating skills if you’re a defenseman. You can’t get by with grit and hard-nosed play. You need to be able to dance with the forwards or you won’t be able to stay in the league. Simply, you need to be an exceptional skater in today’s NHL.”
    http://www.thehockeynews.com/articles/19910-Ulf-Samuelssons-Blog-Playing-D-in-the-new-NHL.html

    So, who does Sather sign in the off season? Lead legged Redden not swift (legs and head) Rozsival.

    Slats sucks. Biggest. Fraud. Ever.

  27. Re: The possibility of Sather relinquishing his GM role. What about Jim Schoenfeld, who quietly has been doing a great job as Asst. GM & Player Development. He’s responsible for many of our prospects coming down from Hartford.

  28. onecupin67years on

    I didn’t think Sather was a genius winning with 99,11 and co. in Edmonton.

    Let him do it in NY (cup) or a final or two then I’ll give him credit.
    I think Lou Lamoriello skates circles around Sather . Sather has an unlimited budget, idiots for owners and whomever he wants to sign.
    Lou won with a limited budget, no overpriced free agents, average to good players (2 HOF players Stevens and Broduer )he tells them “so long, bye,bye ” and still won 3 cups since 95.

    But if Sather leaves and the Rangers don’t win, do you sign Burke for big bucks? Or clean house and give him big bucks ,too.
    and what so great about Burke ?

  29. “and what so great about Burke ?”

    Nothing really….the core Ducks were in place when he got there….(Bryan Murray drafts and signings…..key stat 16 of the 21 Ducks were Canadian

    Burke does have roots in Boston….Maple Leaf Sports has egos just like at MSG (read:also watching questioning etc.)

  30. WOW. I don’t even know where to start or begin.

    Read the last 4-5 entries (sams’s) since the in-game on wednesday night.

    1st, great win. Actually found the game on tv in atlanta at a bar suggested by one of ‘us’ here. They had the STL/BUF game on also. Who knew hockey was so popular in ATL? They just don’t realize they have their own team.

    2nd, get well soon Gomer.

    3rd, great video from the beloved Puck Daddy Blog. Love that site, often link to it.

    4th, screw the devils.

    5th, On Sather…I wouldn’t mind Burke coming in. He has a STELLAR track record of finding young talent. There are lots of similarities in the types of players he drafts to Dubi. Sather’s buried the team, and dug them back up. Some of the best deals the franchise has ever seen, and some of the worst decisions the sport has ever seen. Make of it what you will.

    6th, The naked guy ads are gross.

    7th, Was that the spark the PP needed to find their ‘rythm’? Is there any link to the absence of Scotty? Not to put it on him at all, but I don’t think the question is too far fetched. Then again, it WAS Kevin Weeks. Ok, I’ll just stick to that first question.

    8th, This chicken ceasar salad is pretty good.

    9th, Couldn’t hear the game the other night. I’m assuming an ice pack to the back of the head is all Dubi needed. Looked pretty scary at first.

    10th, and finally…don’t know why I numbered my thoughts…

    Can someone look up the last time the Rangers spent this many calendar days at #1 in the Atlantic/Patrick Div?

    OH YEAH… AND… J! E! T! S!

  31. good, I hope Burke replaces Sather, maybe then Burke fires Renney.

    And trade Rozsival and Gomez already.

  32. Wait awhile on Burke well ya!

    Burke didnt sign Getzlaf that was all Murray’s doings (Perry, Getzlaf, Macdonald,Giguere etc… all that was pre-Burke)He was still screwing up Canucks at that point I belive

    Free agent signings like Nieds and Prongs you dont get genius labels for, sorry…nobody called Steinbrenner a genius for signing Reggie and Goose did they?

    The one “great’ thing was talking Jackets into taking Federov (and grabbing Buecheman in return)

    but he’s almost ruined that in last two years with Macdonald for Weight? And realistically keeping space for Selanne when he could have signed Penner

    plus he’s a cretin

  33. And dont forget bertuzzi signing

    burke did not do a great job of reading the future over last two yeras
    (not that Slats redden and Rozy signings are Kreskin like either)

  34. ORR:

    I see what you are saying, but even then I think that the only move you bring up that Sather deserves credit for is Carter for Jagr. (But, even that deal followed Sather’s pre-lockout M.O.: bring in vets making tonsof cash who are probably past their prime. Credit to Jagr for working out, but the philosophy of getting him in the first place was consistent with Sather’s other pre-lockout moves, which on the whole, were disasterous.)

    Avery, Zherdev, and Voros are all post-salary cap moves. This proves my point. The salary cap imposed fiscal responsibility on Sather that he doesn’t otherwise have. If Sather was allowed to use the full force of the Cablevision pocketbook, do you really think he would have settled for Avery, Zherdev, or Voros? Probably not–he would have gone for the biggest name (which comes along with the biggest price) rather than being forced to actually figure out who would bring him the most value. These were all great moves, but in the absence of the salary cap, I don’t think Sather would have made them.

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