Vinny’s no savior

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The signing of Vaclav Prospal — still unannounced by the NYR — is a decent move. They are certainly thin enough up front, and you only need to look at the line combos a lot of you have put together in this space the last month or so to see that. Boyle? Arnason? Byers? Those guys might be fine, but how many of them can you have?

Prospal is a legit NHL forward. He can play, and he can play a few ways. He’s annoying (more on that in a minute) and he has some skills and he’s proven.

But, which Vinny are you getting? The 33 goals/71 points Vinny of 2007-08 or the 19 goals/45 points Vinny of 2008-09? And if it’s the ’08-09 model, well, how happy are you all going to be when he’s sitting there with 9 goals and 14 assists in December? Answer: Not very.

Now, back to the annoying part. I don’t remember all the details, so help me out if you do. There was a game in Tampa Bay when Prospal scored a late go-ahead goal against the Rangers and celebrated way over the top. And I remember the Rangers were really ticked off about it. I can’t recall if they attacked Prospal (my memory seems to think Todd Harvey or somebody else may have taken exception to it) and/or if the Rangers ended up coming back to win that game and ripping Prospal in the postgame interviews. It was something like that. I’m going to try to find my notes later on.

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Sorry, I forgot to post the official Mark Messier announcement yesterday. Here it is, for those who didn’t figure to go to the Rangers’ site. I was at my niece’s graduation party all day. Family comes first.

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80 Comments

  1. I guess the Prospal signing is decent…. LOTS of speculation happening about Dubi though… not sure what the ultimate goal is here.

  2. CCCP- c’mon fess up…. Carp e-mails you when he’s posting so you can jump on and comment!! (ok ok so maybe that’s going a bit over the top…. i came THAT close to first!)

    At least i lost to a steady blogger.

  3. Good Morning Carp, Laurel, and Grabechev!
    CCCP Congrats on First!
    Vinny…Congrats on the second first, that makes you the first looser…lol

  4. Good morning to all and have a crease clearing hard hitting physical d man day (especially you laurel from ms. Wicky229).

  5. Carp & others: myself & a couple of other NYR fans were just talking about the team & I raised this question: what if Dan Blackburn hadn’t sufferd a career ending injury & had been allowed to develop rather than becoming a NHLer at 18 years old- who would be the Rangers #1 goalie, the King or Blackburn? Although the King is my current favorite player on the team & is an undeniable elite performer, & despite his being recognized as within the top 3 or 4 goalies in the League, I maintain(ed) Blackburn would be the Rangers #1. That’s how good this kid was. As a 17 year old, he had a goals against in the Western Hockey
    League of under 3. As a 14 year old, Blackburn was playing against 17 year olds. The kid was so, so focused when he played. While we’ll never know, nonetheless, is there anyone who agrees with me?

  6. Staal, I agree. That’s not a bad deal, and he helps. My question stands, though. What are you (most of you guys and gals here) going to think if he’s not producing by December and he’s playing and the Rangers are struggling offensively again? He will not be popular in that scenario.

    And good morning all. (including Sally).

    Wicky, don’t you think the Rangers need a crease-clearing defenseman?

  7. Carp, any possibility that the Rangers would keep Dubinsky, but package Anisimov in a deal with Roszival to acquire a number 1 center? If they can trade those 2, with maybe a 1st rounder to San Jose for Marleau, wouldn’t that make somewhat more sense? Down the middle we’d have Marleau, Dubinsky, Drury and Boyle/Arnason. Not that I’m for dumping Anisimov… but getting rid of Dubinsky, to me, is stupidity. True, he hasn’t lit it up yet… but neither did Mike Richards at first, and I definitely like the comparisons between them.

  8. no i think hank is better. blackburn couldve been real good and it mightve been a 1-2 tandem like richter and beezer, but i think hank would still be the number 1 and maybe he wouldnt play as much though. maybe hank would play 50 games and blackburn 30. all i know is it wouldve been a great time to watch both compete with each other and it wouldve brought out the best in both. thats why a guy like valley, as good as he is in the lockerroom and all, is not a threat to hank. if hank had a better goalie backin him up hed be a little more on his toes and probably perform beter to keep his spot.

  9. Carp thats a pretty obvious statement to make. Fortuantely for Prospal, at 1 + he won’t be the most obvious target if the Rangers offensive woes continue.

    If things are that bad that we’re already lashing out at our offense in Decemeber I’d imagine the butt-end of our anger will be directed at Gaborik, Drury, Kotalik, Torts, and of course…Sather.

  10. carp- i guess hed be getting the redden treatment. but id be more woried and pissed if gabby, dru, or duby arent producing like they should. prospal is a 1 million dollar rental. so its no big loss. no big investment so i wouldnt be as mad as if someone like dru, gabby or redden werent producing. even duby. i wanna see him break 20g this year

  11. Carp, I think what upsets most of us is excessive contracts for non producers. So, if Vinny has the lower totals, I’m sure people will not be happy with him but, I think fans will still be more pissed about Redden and his massive contract, and under-producing ways, than they will be about Vinny with a small 1 year contract. Heck Voros makes almost as much and plays in Hartford, unless he becomes the savior of the fourth line…hahahahaha!

  12. Mike – It’s the post-weekend/don’t-want-to-be-at-work hangover. The fog that clouds my mind is often accompanied by bouts of telepathy to offset the unproductiveness.

    And I really can’t see how anyone has a problem with this signing. He’s making less then Brashear and even with a mediocre bottomline, Prospal will be a welcomed addition to a struggling offense.

    My only brief concern when I heard about this yesterday was the chemistry between Torts and Prospal, but this must’ve been way overblown or ironed out by the two of them for 1) Torts to bring Prospal to the Rangers and 2) Prospal to want to play under Torts again.

  13. Staal,

    Good point.. I’d much rather pay an extra 100k for Prospal than Voros, AND Voros still has an extra year on his deal.

  14. Vinny is getting payed less than Brashear. So this is a Bargain and a good short term pick up. He’s good for 50-55 points this season from the left side. Can play some Center.

    Two Minutes For Habitual Celebration. The Vinny Prospal For Dummies Video

    http://www.rangercrisis.com

  15. CCCP- c’mon fess up…. Carp e-mails you when he’s posting so you can jump on and comment!! (ok ok so maybe that’s going a bit over the top…. i came THAT close to first!)
    At least i lost to a steady blogger.

    +++++

    Vinny V

    The thing is…Carp doesn’t email me when he is posting… I AM CARP! Well, I am his alter ego!
    Also, there is nothing wrong being second! It is right next to first! Enjoy it today, because tomorrow you may not even be second! lol

    (if that made any sense)

  16. A F L Y
    Great point on Brashole making alot more than Vinny will be making, thats just disgusting! We could/should have kept Colton Orr and saved another million or so.
    Damn Sather just pisses me off! I hope Messier learns on his own and doesn’t get ‘tutored’ by Sather.

  17. At least we know Prospal has been a goal scorer in the past. How well he does this season depends on who he plays with. I hope he is happy as a clam all season long, and scores goals by the bucket full.

  18. Drury is and will most likely once again be the most disappointing Ranger for me. I did not have high hopes for Redden to begin with, but after losing in the playoffs to the sabers, I expected big things from the so called captain. We shoulda stuck with el capitan Jager, even if he couldn’t speak english and had to have Shanny chew his beef for him.

  19. Oh and CCCP,
    when I once again claim that first place, I expect you to offer me the same congrats and stick up for me against the “first” post haters.

  20. I also like this pick-up, the one year deal is perfect and it’s nice to have a player that can shift to center if you need it.

  21. Does anyone else think that Torts had a large part of the decision in this move. I like that Torts doesn’t care what his players think of him. Its’ all about winning and if the player doesn’t like him he basically says get over it, your here to win.

  22. even if we get 08-09 vinny, its a bargain. and plus, he had better numbers under torts, and his numbers have been declining with the quality of the lightning team. this could be the best signing of the entire summer for any team, if he puts up big numbers again.

  23. explain to me that everywhere you read it talks about dubi taking 1st line center AND the rangers site has him on the roster, but they havent even mentioned a thing about signing him or trading him?! i just dont understand it. i cant help but believe that if he was an unrestricted free agent he would have been signed somewhere at least in early july. sather better not screw this up and trade away heart for some old bag who’s gonna score when hes not feeling lazy and then retire from a team they dont care about.

  24. Where's Pavelich? on

    ..the team is still soft.. dosen’t the fact that Dubinsky is a fit and just about any team in the NHL, tell Sather he is a good fit for the Rangers (esp. w/Torts?)

    Does anyoine know what Dubs is asking for $$ and years???

  25. Staal Wart

    i will protect you with my wide, bear like Russian chest from all the “first” haters! You can count on me!

    And you’ll get a pat on the back for being first, whenever you claim that most prestigious place on the blog, of course.

  26. Just wanted to add that 45 points at 1.1 million is great. he would have been among our top scorers last year with that total.

    I think people are critisizing the signing for the sake of being negative.

  27. I’m still totally unsure of this years roster. There has been a tremendous amount of turnover, the whole character of this team is different.

    Carp….any word if the Rangers are still pursuing the Heatley option? Not that i’m excited for it, but the rumors won’t die.

  28. That’s right Rick! If you read your (our) name in Russian then yes we do have the same first and last initials! This only proves what i said before even more! BEWARE OF ALTER EGO!!

    …and Carp too! :p

  29. NorthCountryRanger on

    Anyone else remember Prospal LAST SEASON in his native land in Prague for the opener confidently (turned out to be real foolish…) predicting a 2 game sweep of the blueshirts? I sure do…seems like Vinny often puts his foot in his mouth…like the time he said he wanted to shove a winning goal up torts’ butt…if you don’t believe me look at the youtube clip…he better learn to shut his trap in NY or the media will have a field day…

  30. Just reposting, because I’m not sure if you all read it…
    Does anyone else think that Torts had a large part of the decision in this move?
    Torts doesn’t care what his players think of him. Its’ all about winning and if the player doesn’t like him he basically says get over it, your here to win.

  31. Why would we care if Prospal was over the top scoring a goal against the Rangers? Doesn’t Sean Avery play for the Rangers? Didn’t Matt Barnaby fist pump in front of the other team’s bench? How would the Rangers be in any position to criticize anyone? Not to mention that Jagr got criticized for not celebrating enough when he scored, and Ovechkin gets criticized for celebrating too much. Let them all have fun — it’s entertainment. Prospal sounds passionate, and that’s a good thing.

  32. kc, I don’t care. I was just remembering the incident.

    Staal, I’ve got tons of trivia. And, yes, Torts has a lot to do with the personnel moves now. He and Vinny have banged heads, but I think they understand each other.

    Vinny V … anything’s possible on the Heatley front. I’d rather have him than Richards any day. Although I think he’ll eventually wear out his welcome wherever he lands.

  33. I’ll gladly take an affordable Ranger with some skills and a PERSONALITY. No downside to Prospal, welcome aboard.

  34. Carp,

    What I remember was Vaclav Varada scoring a goal to put Buffalo on top then Harvey attacking him and getting subsequently suspended.

  35. Seems to me like they’re loading up on 20 goal guys to support Gaborik. It would be nice to see some depth on offense this year.

  36. 4Generations and only 4Cups on

    Petr Sykora was a Ranger that should have never been cut loose. The guy does well in literally every uniform he puts on, a mercenary for hire this guy can put the puck away no questions asked. I’d love to see him on the team if a guy like Grachev didn’t make the big club.

  37. Good morning/afternoon, Carp! I was on a mountain in West Virginia for the past few days… did I miss any news on the Dubinsky front?

  38. Ok, sorry Carp. This team needs more personality and not less, especially after last year, which was probably the most boring group in years. It seems the sports media in general has been spending too much time criticizing players for being too exuberant, whether it’s Joba or Ovechkin, as if that is really a problem. Bringing in skill, along with personality and passion, is a good step.

  39. by the way, over the weekend we were talking about great players who were/are failures as coaches (and GMs, I guess).

    The two exceptions were both ex-Canadiens Hall of Fame players and Devils coaches, Jacques Lemaire and Larry Robinson. But other ex-Habs have been mediocre at best: Carbonneau and Gainey.

    kc, let me guess. You’re under 25. The celebration thing is obviously generational. Some of us older people preferred it when you didn’t have to act like an idiot when you did something routine.

  40. 4Generations and only 4Cups on

    KC, bringing in Tortorella was the first step to changing a passionless emotionless team.

    We signed MARKUS NASLUND to a TWO YEAR/8 MILL deal last summer! I still just can’t quite understand what we foresaw in him, but whatever.

    This years Rangers will hopefully be FUN to watch and maybe make it apparent that theyre HAVING fun. Guys like Prospal are guys we need.

  41. Troj has a Zherdev jersey for sale... cheap !! on

    Hey Mike in IA, to follow up on my last post, nothing is a guarantee…. but there is a whole lot more upside to Anisimov. And don’t get me wrong, I love Dubi….I would love to see him in a role as a number 2 guy and hope he pulls that off, but he really isn’t that talented. This is the same mistake we made with Cullen a few years ago by trying to make him the #2 center when he was clearly more suited to third line duties. I mean if heart was such a big factor, then we should have never gotten rid of Ortmeyer.
    You also need to factor in what style of play your top line will play. Dubi flourished in a possession type offense. Does he have speed… yes….but he can’t play run and gun.
    Anisimov is a big fast guy with a great skill set that could find a great chemistry with Gabby and either Cally or Avery.
    Just my opinion though, and what the hell do I know anyway !!!

  42. I have a partial and half season available. Includes preseason, regular season and playoffs. If you take the half season. I will give you the exclusive rights to playoffs at whatever face value is ( wont know until they send the bill in May, but you wont be on the hook if you don’t want them.)
    I’m not trying to make anything on these tickets. I just need to get rid of them because I currently am on the hook for 6 season seats.

    If you feel safer, I can put up whatever you decide you want on ebay for a buy it now option. This way you can make a secure paypal payment linked to an ebay sale.

    Section is 304. Row N Seats 7-8. Its a great view from the penalty box side right along the goal line.

    I’m asking face value 60 bucks a seat per game…

    Reply or email me at steven.zeltser@gmail.com

  43. Carp

    Not an ex-Canadian but a great player Tony Granato didn’t last long in Colorado. Though, first two seasons there he had a great record.

  44. Hey cousin Steven, you Inglorious Basterd! How r u man? its Tolik… lol

    I tried to push the tickets here, but i guess the people on this board like to watch their games at home. lol

  45. Troj.. did dubi not play on the first line the year before last? with jagr and avery or straka? how could we not play run and gun? he played with torts before torts was a ranger. the kid has heart and could be a franchise player as well as calli. it would be a shame to trade him and not sign him and encourage him and build his confidence to become that player that we try to search for every post season.

  46. Troj has a Zherdev jersey for sale... cheap !! on

    Hey Gartner…. I may know someone interested in the half season. I will make some calls today and let you know. Might work out, your seats are only a few sections away from mine in 314.
    I should be able to have an answer by tomorrow morning.

  47. Vinny makes us better but it does hurt the development of either Lisin or Anisimov… He plays center I guess Anisimov spends another year in Hartford..

    Here is the Hockey News ranking the Rangers 13th in the East this year.. I think the Rangers will finish 7th..Adam Proteau and his group at the Hockey News are blinded by their hatred of Sather to offer an unbiased opinion..

    http://www.thehockeynews.com/articles/27434-The-Hockey-News-200910-NHL-regular-season-predictions-No-10.html

  48. Signing Prospal? Are you kidding? Another season of 10 3rd and 4th liners, 1 or 2 maybe star quality players, and the rest a mishmash of maybes, potentials, and a mediocre defense.

    Of all the signings this offseason (what is it now? 10? more?) I see Gaborik making impact. Eveyrone else is a big ass question mark. Higgins, Kotalik, now Prospal….this is deja vu all over again. Brashear will make the team cuz we have no Orr. Other than that, it’s a joke. It reminds me of Rissmiller, Fritsche, and Voros (who is still being considered for the team, doesn’t that tell you how crappy our team is looking?) last year. I mean Byers, Boyle, Arnason, Voros, Anisimov, Grachev, and Lisin….where the hell they all fitting next to Gabby, Dubi, Cally, Drury, Avery, Higgins, Kotalik, Brashear, and now Prospal?

    That is 16 forwards and I am not sure how many of them are real top 6 players?

    Am I nuts? Am I missing something (obviously not even talking defense right now)?

    If people are jumping for joy over signing Prospal, I think it is going to be a long season.

    Sorry. Someone convince me that I am wrong.

  49. “It’s official, Prospal joins the Rangers (from Rangers website)”

    +++++++

    not that it hasnt already…but

    LET THE CHAOS BEGIN!

  50. zipays possible line combos

    Higgins-Prospal-Gaborik
    Dubinsky-Drury-Kotalik
    Avery-Anisimov-Callahan
    Brashear-Boyle-Lisin/Voros

    i think top 3 will have a lot of balance

  51. NYRanger4Life on

    Great read on the Prospal signing on Hockeyrodent.com

    Apparently the Rangers told Vinnie they were not going to go public with the signing until today.

    Also – seems there is NO beef between him and Torts…and that they have quite a solid relationship. Interestingly enough, they also discussed slotting him in the 1st line center position as well.

    Good Read

  52. DeucesVVild22 on

    rick i remember the game your talking about with prospal…he celebrated right in front of the rangers bench after scoring a goal and the rangers were ticked off about that….after that i think it was matt barnaby who scored a goal and then skated right in front of prospal and the lightning and had the same celebration as prospal…i dont remember if anybody jumped him in the game or ripped him in the press though

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