Free agency eve (updated)


So we are a day away. I just remember the eve of free agency last season when everybody thought the Rangers were about to get Dany Heatley, after they made the Scott Gomez salary-dump trade (in which they got Ryan McDonagh’s rights, not to mention Christopher Higgins). And when the Heatley deal fell through, the Rangers had cleared the deck for Marian Gaborik’s contract the next day.

I don’t know if there will be any action going down tonight, but I wouldn’t be surprised if there was.

Here, from TSN, is the unofficial list of players who will be free agents from Eastern Conference teams on Thursday.

Here is TSN’s list of players due to be free agents from the West.

I’ll try to publish the official lists when the NHL releases them.


I was hoping to get to the Garden Monday night, when the Rangers’ top new prospects toured the new design of the building, and Glen Sather and John Tortorella were available. But of course, my “other” job got in the way and I couldn’t go. And I was hoping to get over to the prospects camp one of these days, but of course my “other” job is preventing that so far.

Oh, well.


I do however, plan to be with youse all day Thursday, whether the Rangers take a dip in the pool or not. Should be an interesting day. Always is.

That is, if the world doesn’t stop spinning for LeBron James.


MORNING UPDATE, 10:14 A.M.: Gotta tell you, I’m waffling now.

The idea of adding Kovalchuk, if he would come for little more than Redden money, is starting to appeal to me. It’s just that, well, guys like that don’t become UFAs very often, not in their prime. And if you can get him long term, and have Gaborik for four more years, and the goalie is in his prime, and there is still room for the young kids to be incorporated into the team, and Redden’s contract will be gone in September, and Brashear’s will be gone after this season, and maybe you can trade Rozsival and have only one remaining albatross contract (Drury), and still have enough left to sign Staal, well … why not do it?

Why not? Why wait for next year’s UFA class?

Unless you don’t like Kovalchuk as a player. Some don’t.

One other thing: What is Erik Christensen thinking turning down a two-year deal for $750,000 per?


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  1. bull dog line on

    I know, eric, the Rangers have way too many proven 40 goal scorers on their team. they can let this guy go.
    Crosby, Malkin. Toews, Kane. Ovechkin, Semin. Datsuk, Zetterberg. Carter, Richards.
    Gaborik all by his lonesome.

  2. Kovy is a bad idea. I LIKE him I don’t LOVE him. I think he is over rated anyway. And with Avery here, Kovy is signing elsewhere. Trust me.

  3. bull dog line on

    Why is Kovalchuk a bad idea?
    I don’t get, a team like the Rangers with no secondary scoring to speak of, and a proven 40 goal scorer is a bad idea. If Avery is a problem Kovalchuk, for whatever reason, then dump that phony Avery. he has been living off of a good 20 games for 3 seasons now. enough with his act!

  4. Blueshirt in Paris on

    I tried to post a link to some of Kovy stats but guess it didn’t get approved. In a nutshell when you look past just the total number of goals it is not impressive nor even close to what he will get paid.

    Let’s look at how he did at 5-on-5 over the last three seasons:

    Year GP 5v5 TOI Corsi QoC Team Avg Zone Start Team Avg Corsi Corsi Rel
    2007-08 79 14.52 0.87 1.06 49.1 42.6 -14.17 -1.00
    2008-09 79 14.87 -0.20 -0.16 45.0 42.9 -5.21 1.40
    2009-10 76 15.73 -0.40 -0.18 50.7 46.0 0.85 -0.10

    Total 234 15.03 0.10 0.24 48.2 43.8 -6.27 0.10

    To recap that table in a sentence: Ilya Kovalchuk has been much more likely to start out in the offensive zone than his teammates, and even though he lines up against his opponents’ weaker lines, his teams have been significantly outshot while he’s on the ice. In other words, he’s a seriously negative player at even-strength. By way of comparison, Vincent Lecavalier – who has a millstone of a contract he can never live up to – also gets choice faceoff starts, but he faces tough competition and comes out positive relative to his teammates.

    Kovalchuk does have one skill – shooting. He’s the rare guy for whom on-ice shooting percentage will consistently exceed the league average:

    Year S% Sv% PDO
    2007-08 12.71 888 1015
    2008-09 12.14 889 1010
    2009-10 11.97 916 1035

    Total 12.28 897 1020

  5. Blueshirt in Paris on

    Should add that I took that from Behind the Net…they do some great stat work over there.

  6. Tank The Season on

    We may end up stuck with Kovalchuk if the rumors are true that Dolan is so obsessed with getting him that he told Sather he could do absolutely anything to make it happen, ie burying any combination of Drury, Redden, and Rozsival and offering Kovalchuk a max deal.

    If it means we don’t have to watch Redden anymore, its almost worth it.

  7. Blueshirt in Paris on

    Agreed, someone said it yesterday but I forget who. If Kovy is what gets them to waive Redden they I am fine with it.

    Team with Redden < team without Redden and with Kovy

    Still would rather waive Redden and use the money for something else but as the say, beggars cant be choosers.

  8. Tank The Season on

    Sather could also sign him to a Hossa style deal to keep the cap hit down.

  9. you’re not going to ruin my summer THIS year Slats! this time Glenny I’ll beee bullettt prooof!

    Hedberg, Excelby, Leopold. R n R to the Pack

  10. Sather is going to make the right decisions tomorrow and every day thereafter. I believe, however misguided that belief is!

  11. Interesting stats, Paris. It doesn’t take into account one important point, however: he played in Atlanta.

    Good morning, ‘heads.

    Remember, Redden and his cap hit can not be sent to Hartford until after the training camp. Therefore he counts against the cap’s limit during the summer of $65.34 mil ($59.4 mil + 10%).

  12. Blueshirt in Paris on

    Charlie, head over to the site I mentioned, they do a good write up on all those numbers but in a nutshell

    Corsi Number is the shot differential while a player was on the ice. This includes not just goals and shots on goal, but also shots that miss the net, and in some formulations, blocked shots. In other words, it’s the differential in the total number of shots directed at the net.

    QoC is a bit harder to explain in a nutshell ;) but it tries to define the quality of the competition the person plays against.

  13. Sorry for bringing all these numbers, but salary floor in 2010-2011 will be $43.4 mil. Salary cap right after that pathetic CBA was $39 mil. Just in five year salary floor is $4.4 mil higher than the cap after lockout. Why we lost the whole year of hockey is beyond me.

  14. bull dog line on

    here is some Stats for you Paris,
    29 goals, 38 goals,41 goals,52 goals,42 goals, 52 goals again, and 41 goals.

  15. Blueshirt in Paris on

    Im not by any means a statistician but I think to some extent those stats are relative to his team.

    And regarding you second point, you are right he would still count against the cap…but what happens next year/summer? We sign some FA this summer but come next summer Redden’s salary would count…even if he is in Hartford. And that would push us way over the cap+10%. Isnt it something like the top 25 players contracts regardless of where they are is what counts against the summer cap?

  16. Bulldog,
    The key is SECONDARY scoring. Kovy would be PRIMARY scoring. At that price, the Rangers don’t need him. If this were a no cap legue, sure. But this team is already in salary trouble. This team may have to purge Redden just to keep Staal, Del Zotto, Callahan, et al. when THEY are due paydays.

  17. Blueshirt in Paris on

    Bull dog, if this was Fantasy Hockey then that would be enough to sell me…but as well all know there are other things to look at. I don’t see him as a dominate 5v5 player. Yeah he will score some goals but most would agree his battle, back checking, etc… are sorely missing.

    If we were on the verge of a cup and that was a last piece I could see the argument but we are not. Maybe with those extra goals we squeeze into the playoffs but we are not going far. He is not even a proven playoff player. We are still missing a center and tough d-man. I say focus on plugging those holes either short term and wait for kids or get some long term pieces to complement the kids in the future.

  18. bull dog line on

    Drury, and Roszival, will be off the cap in 2 years and Redden will be buried in the minors. there will be plenty of room for the guys you mentioned, cw.
    Kovalchuk is as close to a no brainer as you can get.

  19. bull dog line on

    if a number 1 center, and a top Dman were available in free agency, I would agree with you. but they are not.
    in order to win, you must score, and the Rangers do not score. this is the best pure goal scorer on the market, possibly ever, and you want to turn your nose up at him.

  20. If guys like Kovalchuk pop up every year in free agency then the arguement to wait makes sense. But they don’t. What makes it worst is, when players of his caliber (top 10) do become FA, most likely they are staying put with their current teams. Sedin did not move. Do you think Crosby, Ovie, Malkin, Stamkos are going anywhere when their contracts are up. Doubtful, at least until they’re washed up.

    So it’s more than getting an elite scorer when you need him. It’s also how likely are they to be truely available.

    I think Kovy presents the rare opportunity because he is young, in his prime and available. Gotta do what you can to get him, even if the payoff is a couple of years away.

  21. speZzZza? NYR ZzZz " Almost free agent frenzzzy " … says Greg L. on

    As much as Kovalsucks sucked…he would ease pressure off of Gaborik and if we could dump R & R & D to afford him…im in!!!

  22. Blueshirt in Paris on

    Possibly best goal scorer ever? Dont agree but lets go with that. Mike Gartner was as well and you saw how the team tanked after we got rid of him.

    Listen I don’t dispute that he has talent and he would help us score goals…but Im not interested in jumping up and down 50 times more this year and getting bounced in the first round. I want to win another cup before I die…and I don’t think Kovy is the way to get to that point. we are in a transition year, next year as well. so transition…get rid of the bad contract and work on getting the kids developed…and in that time make educated guesses on their improvements and deal accordingly. Next year FA’s are far more attractive and you will be one year further in figuring out how the kids will play into this.

    I know its a wet dream but I want to see them build a winner, not a marketing tool.

  23. Coach Beeblebrox on

    If Kovalchuk can be signed for Gaborik type money, it is an easy choice. If he wants $10 million a year, forget him.

  24. Doodie Machetto on

    “he has been living off of a good 20 games for 3 seasons now. enough with his act!”

    I’ve been saying that for 3 years.

    What time does free agency start tomorrow, midnight or at some other time (like noon)?

  25. bull dog line on

    what I said is that he is possible the best scorer to hit the open market. obviously he is not the best scorer ever.

  26. Wow, amazed to see some clear-thinking individuals who at a minimum understand it is irresponsible of Sather or any GM for that matter NOT to at least kick the tires on Kovalchuk.

    This should not be about signing yet another free agent.

    It should be about signing – or attempting to sign – the LAST free agent, at least as far as premium or elite ones go.

    From there out – and realize this would mark the end of not one but two “rebuilding” phases (one begun under Smith in 1998, the second under Sather) – the ENTIRE rest of the roster should be shaped through trades and the draft.

    Nurture the young D core and pray we get some upside from the likes of Anisimov, Grachev, etc.

    But going after Kovalchuk is a hands-down no-brainer, though the smart money seems to think he’s headed to a near-perfect fit in LA.

    If the Garden is attempting what some friends described, basically trying to land IK and Lebron James, and selling it to both under a future “Sports/Media Center of the Universe” plan which includes the MSG renovations, they might have a shot.

    Both are looking for a “winner”, which obviously hurts the chances of them coming here. And where NY once had the added benefit of extra ad $$$ in addition to what they sign for, that wouldn’t be the case for Kovalchuk in LA, and doesn’t matter at all for James, who will attract massive national ad money no matter where he lands.

    That said, the simlpest arguments sometimes are the most effective. Kovalchuk’s a great scorer, and the Rangers – could anyone deny? – need scoring help.

    The $ never matters except how it fits into the cap.
    And if the Rangers are serious, they can make that work too.

  27. Doodie Machetto on

    This is seriously one of the weakest FA classes I can ever remember. No real prizes other than Kovalchuk. After Kovalchuk there are hardly any forwards worth mentioning. On defense, Gonchar is good but old, and everyone else is more of a 3-4 at best rather than a 1-2, although they would be 1-2 on our pathetic defense.

    Also opposite from most years is that there are so many starting-quality goaltenders available, even if none of them are really star netminders. Nabokov is the highest rated, but he is officially a big playoff no-show. Unlike Kovalchuk, we actually have a large enough sample size to say that this guy just disappears in the playoffs.

  28. drury has full no movement clause which precludes that

    Tank The Season
    June 30th, 2010 at 8:21 am
    We may end up stuck with Kovalchuk if the rumors are true that Dolan is so obsessed with getting him that he told Sather he could do absolutely anything to make it happen, ie burying any combination of Drury, Redden, and Rozsival and offering Kovalchuk a max deal

  29. Blueshirt in Paris on

    Ah sorry Dog, I misread…but I though Gaborik was the best pure goal scorer to hit the market. ;)

  30. Blueshirt in Paris on

    and the hands of time keep turning. There will be others. If Gretzky and Messier can hit the open market (multiple times) anyone can.

    I agree, gotta kick the tires…but from all the chatter he is looking for mega-mega bucks and long term,,and wants to go to a our offer would have to blow him out of the water and thats what I am afraid of.

  31. Gift of GAB-orik( NOW SIGN ZHERDEV!!! ) on

    If the Rangers got Kovy, i certainly wouldn’t hate it… that’s a real potent 1-2 punch with Gabby. I still think it’s a good idea to get Nicky Z for the minimum if that’s a possibility. That would give us 3 bonafide goal scorers. 2 years from now, we’re in a better cap situation… roll the dice…. why the hell not.

  32. Here’s how you do it if you’re Sather. Here’s the deal with Kovy.

    Since money is not a problem for the Rangers, but salary cap is, you him $100 million over the length of a 20 year contract with all of the $100 million frontloaded in the first 6 years. That should make the AAV and cap hit between $5 million.

    The arrangement with Kovy is, after his 6 years in which he is paid all of the $100 million, he retires and ends his contract. Then unretires and is a free agent.

    Not sure if any of that is allowed, but if it is, Id do it, since money is of no object to Dolan.

  33. bull dog line on

    I think the biggest point for Kovalchuk, compared to the guys you mentioned, is age. he is 27, plenty of prime left.

  34. Gift of GAB-orik( NOW SIGN ZHERDEV!!! ) on

    Reports are Christensen rejected 2 year deal in the neighborhood of $1.5 mil. Zip had a great comment on his twitter…

    “So NYR rescues Erik Christensen off journeyman scrap heap, puts him with Gaborik and he rejects two-year offer. Gratitude’s fleeting… “

  35. So in essence, he’d be getting $100 million for 6 years and the Rangers would be cheating the salary cap.

  36. Doodie Machetto on

    “Not sure if any of that is allowed, but if it is, Id do it, since money is of no object to Dolan.”

    It’s not.

  37. Front loading a career-type contract is absolutely allowed. That’s what Chicago did with Hossa. There’s been others as well. Better do it now, before that loop hole gets plugged in the next CBA.

    CR, you don’t even need an “unofficial” agreement with him. If he’s paid virtually all his money over 6-7 yrs, why wouldn’t he walk away/retire? He’s not going to keep playing for chump change, and the remaining cap hit to the Rangers is irrelevant to him at that point.

  38. Gift of GAB-orik( NOW SIGN ZHERDEV!!! ) on

    Hypothetical double edged sword…

    Who’d you rather have… Kovy or Spezza?

  39. for the record, as far as our D goes, I’d rather have a bunch of 3-4 guys rather then two 3-4 guys, one 5-6 guy, and three 7-press box/ahl guys.

  40. Doodie Machetto on

    “Front loading a career-type contract is absolutely allowed. That’s what Chicago did with Hossa. There’s been others as well. Better do it now, before that loop hole gets plugged in the next CBA.”

    The NHL has threatened to disallow heavily front-loaded contracts such as Hossa’s. I think Hossa’s is about as close as you can come without them looking itno the contract. CR9 proposed a 20 year contract. The league would bust up a heavily front loaded 20 year contract because it knows full well that it is being done to circumvent the CBA. With Hossa’s it’s not as clear since he could conceivably be playing until he is 42, but signing a player to a deal to play until he’s 47 is beyond obvious. I don’t care that Chelios did it. He’s the exception, not the rule. Any team comes with a 20 year deal that’s really heavily front loaded will have it busted up by the league as intending to violate the CBA.

  41. Great question, but still answer is still Kovalchuk. Although Spezza fills a BIG need at center and brings scoring, he will cost you because you have to give up assets up to get him in a trade.

    Can I have both? (sorry, kidding……sort of)

  42. as for Kovy, it would be a bad situation because people wouldn’t realize that he is what he is. a very talented and dynamic player but NOT a franchise guy who’s going to bring you to a championship. He would be one more face in a long list of Ranger “superstars” that have the camera aimed at his back while he skates off the ice after a 2-1 loss at MSG where they keep showing a replay of his shot missing the net or getting blocked with seconds left in the 3rd.

    We don’t need a 1-2 punch or a natural goal scorer as much as we need a well balanced attack and a TEAM that can compete with guys that can come through. it’s an old quote but it’s about ‘the right guys. not the best guys’

  43. Doodie Machetto on

    Another problem with CR9’s proposal is that a player’s annual salary cannot exceed 20 percent of the salary cap, based on the cap as it stands in the year the contract is signed. So, this year, 20 percent of the cap is going to be just under 12 million. In 6 years, Kovalchuk will be paid at most, just under 72 million. You’re going to have to keep paying him for more time.

  44. If Kovy wasnt looking for a long term deal, and they are willing to bury Redden and try and trade Roszival, i would at least try to sign the guy (3yrs at $7.5m per). But if its true he’s looking for $10m per for a long term deal, i’d save the money and wait for the Roszi and Drury contracts to disappear in 2 years time (or earlier if they can be traded) and get the kids some experience between now and then, then if they dont work out……

  45. Doodie, you’re right if it’s a 20 yr deal. I wasn’t proposing that, although CR did. I meant a career-type contract of considerable length.

    A 13-15 yr deal accomplishes about the same thing. And the Rangers would have a GREAT case to argue with the league that, since they allowed Hossa’s contract, they better allow Kovy’s.

    All that said, am I being naive to think that Bettmen prefers Kovy in NY and would (wink-wink) allow it to happen? Na, Bettmen is too honorable to tamper like that. Nevermind.

  46. Doodie Machetto on

    “All that said, am I being naive to think that Bettmen prefers Kovy in NY and would (wink-wink) allow it to happen? Na, Bettmen is too honorable to tamper like that. Nevermind.”

    Of course he wouldn’t let Kovy in NY! NY has a solid fan base regardless of how the team performs. He needs Kovy to go somewhere with a more fickle fan base that would have poor attendance if the team didn’t perform well.

  47. no one’s brought up the fact that our best season came after a free agency period (and lockout) where people looked at our signings and our roster and went “who are these guys?” Straka? Moore? Nylander? Betts? they’re gonna finish 30th!”

  48. TheREALMikeyNJ on

    To me if Kovy is looking for a penny over what Gabby makes, say no thanks and walk away

    YEs the one two punch of Gabby and Kovy on the first and second lien woudl be great, but who feeds eithe rof them the puck consistently?

    We all kno wthe few things that need to be done in order for us to be competitive next season:

    -Resign Staal
    -Send Redden to Hartford
    -Get a quality first line center, or as clsoe as you can to it
    -promote some more youth to fill the holes of Prospal, etc
    -Get a back-up goalie for a min of 20 games a season
    -Resign Shelly & Prust
    -Drop the other dead weight to HArtford (Voros)
    -Get a proper Banger on D to protect Hank or as close to it as you can

    Go with what you got. No sense half ass rebuilding around the young core if its not done right, do it right the first time


    Hank –

    Staal, DelZ, Gilroy, Rosi

    14 players to build around
    resign who you think is worth keeping, promote some youth, go after players for SPECIFIC roles and needs to fill the holes in the line-up

    Sounds simple right?

    LEts see if Tomoato Faced Moron can get his cigar out of his A@@ long enough to make some good decisions

  49. Gift of GAB-orik( NOW SIGN ZHERDEV!!! ) on

    Kovy = Game changer (for better or worse)

    Game changer = bank breaker

  50. I think Kovy will be a King by 12:01pm tomorrow, they are looking for a new superstar, they have cap space and he would sell a few more tickets.

    As for us i hope Slats keeps away from what is a very average class of free agents. Maybe offer a couple of 1 year deals if it looks like the younger guys need more development time (ie Grachev, Stepan, McD, Werek). I wouldnt say no to Demitra for 1 year if its purely a stop-gap till our young guys are ready or Prospal again if its a bargain.

  51. Gift of GAB-orik( NOW SIGN ZHERDEV!!! ) on


    apparently the life the Rangers/Gaborik breathed into his failing career gave him a false sense of his worth. I thought he did well for us, i’d like to see him back… I’m just not sure what’s fair to pay a guy who was almost done in the NHL. He had an OK season… far from spectacular.

  52. Doodie
    I don’t think it’s about fannies in the seats for Mr. Gary. Kovy in NY means much more for national TV ratings ($$$$)than a full house in (fill in the blank_____).

  53. I REALLY don’t want Kovalchuk anywhere close to this team. Wrong direction to go in, wrong attitude to have in the room. He is not a game changer in my eyes.

  54. Gift of GAB-orik( NOW SIGN ZHERDEV!!! ) on

    Kovalchuk wouldn’t be the worst thing to happen to the Rangers. He’s not 32, or 35, or almost 40. He’s not a 15 goal scorer who had one good season. He’s consistently solid, and played for a sub par franchise.

    He’s got great hands, a great shot, and can skate like the wind. His only knock is he can be lax at times, and lose passion.

    However, playing for a big market team, and being with Gaborik, i think the compete level would be there.

    I won’t stop breathing if he signs here, just like i won’t shed tears if he doesn’t. I can take it or leave it all the same.

    That being said… i’d prefer Kovy to Spezza.

  55. NYRangersFan on

    They have to get Kovalchuk. There is no scorer on the left side. Kovalchuk, who is a left wing, could bring Drury back from his bad year. Drury is a right handed shot and can play on the same line with Kovalchuk.

    Glen Sather gave a lot of money to players who can’t put the puck in the net or defenseman who can’t score or can’t play defense anymore. When it comes to signing real stars then he backs out. Time to sign the real stars who can really play. Kovalchuk can put 40 to 50 goals from the left side.

    Top two lines:
    Dubinsky Prospal Gaborik
    Kovalchuk Drury Callahan

    Too bad Christensen won’t sign.

  56. It would be a refreshing change if they did nothing. Granted, there are plenty of holes on this team and we could be staring at another year like last year, but honestly, I look at this UFA class and it’s just not appealing. Sure there are OK to decent players on the list, but nobody who could help this team with the current holes it has.

    As for Kovy, I’m lukewarm on him. Yes he can score goals, but the team could use a play-maker more than a goal scorer, imho.

  57. Doodie Machetto on

    “I don’t think it’s about fannies in the seats for Mr. Gary. Kovy in NY means much more for national TV ratings ($$$$)than a full house in (fill in the blank___).”

    To him it’s about making sure every team is making money. Rangers will always make money regardless who is on the roster.

  58. No offense Mickey, but if the team needs a play maker who could put the puck on Dubi’s, Avery’s, Drury’s, Lisin’s, Higgin’s, Kotalik’s, etc etc etc etc stick, just so they can miss an another open net……I’d rather have the goal scorer instead.

  59. I have been against kovi coming to ny all along but I am beginning to see how it can be a good thing. If the $ is right it could be done and redden will be gone by October. That is a win all the way. It would have to be a contract like hossa got. 10 years at 7 or 6 million per but front loaded.

    I don’t believe all those stats about him being bad a even strngth. If he is playing against the other teams checkers and best pair of dmen gabby scores 60 goals against the 2nd set of dmen all season. Look at the pp with mdz and kovi at the point!

  60. I guess most of us, including Carp, started to agree with what I mentioned yesterday- signing Kovalchuk doesn’t exclude promoting the kids and letting them grow. In fact, if they do sign him, it may mean one thing for sure- Redden and Roszival are gone. I’m just worried he’ll be asking for too much. I still believe it’s doable- they can frontload his contract like very few teams could. We’ll have to wait and see.

  61. GC, good point and I’m not saying they don’t need goal scoring because they do, and badly. It’s a catch-22…they need both of them, but which one is available at the right price, that’s the question. Kovalchuk at $10 million per is too rich for this team, so I think that they play-maker route is more easily attainable at what they can afford. That and praying that Dubi, Cally, Avery, AA, etc can find the back of the net more consistently.

  62. To take this in another direction, say Redden and Rozi are both gone in order to sign Kovalchuk…what does the defense look like next year? Staal (even with the brouhaha over his contract, he’ll be back, imo), MDZ, Gilroy are really the only guarantees and even Gilroy is a stretch. That leaves 3, maybe 4 positions open. Girardi is a possibility, then Sauer? Potter? They’ll have little money left after signing Kovy and re-upping Staal so there will be no free agent D’s coming in unless they are 5/6 guys. It’ll be the same as last year, only with different names.

  63. wicky (Let's Go Rangers!!!) on

    I still think I would want spezza over kovy. I’m not against kovy, I honestly think he really hates avery so the locker room dynamic would be interesting. Either one would help the team scoring. We need a centre more, but either would help. I just hope slatipuss doesn’t forget about the greasy motor and focus on all the fancy body work on this race car…..he needs to make volchenkov the number one priority tomorrow!

  64. Gift of GAB-orik( NOW SIGN ZHERDEV!!! ) on

    Volchenkov would be a solid move, though the Rangers are DEEP with defense prospects. We’ll see what happens.

  65. Tank The Season on

    Ottawa’s asking price for Spezza is probably Dubinsky (whom they wanted in a Heatley deal), Staal, and a prospect. If Staal won’t re-sign, would you do this? If they’d take Girardi rather than Staal and maybe a “better” prospect I’d consider it.

  66. MickeyM,

    The rangers are about 13 mill under cap now. Take out redden that’s 19 million. Say kovi takes 8mill on high side. Staal gets 4 or 5. That still leaves about 4 or 5 to get another dman. How about the bearded one (Mara) for less than that?

    Staal mdz roszy Mara gilroy and a rookie is stil better than whats there now

  67. Gift of GAB-orik( NOW SIGN ZHERDEV!!! ) on

    Dubinsky and Staal for Spezza? Plus a prospect?? not a chance. I would NOT even consider that deal.

  68. The more you guys talk about Kovy the more i can see Slats with his cigar hanging out of his mouth with his arm around Kovy’s shoulders talking about having the best 1-2 punch of scorers in the NHL.

    Also i’ve noticed the language when talking about Redden in the media; its moved to a “will be demoted” rather than a “should be demoted” – although none of this can happen till training camp so unless there is an official announcement its all just hearsay.

  69. Tank The Season on

    Spezza can put up 20 goals and 70 assists playing with Gaborik. Keep that in mind.

  70. Man, I know Kovy is a proven scorer. No question about that. I am afraid of the contract amount. If they could get him for what they have in Gabby, and they remove Redden and find a way to fill out the D in a reasonable manner… then I guess I would be on board.

    HOWEVER, I think he is too steep at 9+ mil per. If they could give him a front loaded contract for 6 years with a more reasonable cap average, then it might make sense for both parties. The Rangers should have enough in Hartford to fill in any and all forward holes. Grachev is on the verge. The issue is filling out the D. I think McDonagh could step right in as a 5-6 D. Sauer and Potter have enough game to be effective 5-6 D as well. Sign Staal and keep Girardi at a reasonable price, then you have MDZ and Rozi (unless you can find a way to trade him) with McDonagh, Sauer, Potter, Gilroy for the last two positions, it might work.

  71. Why would you think spezza can get 70 assists with gabby? He never came close to that with alfredsson and heatly

  72. Grachev with 4 goals today in prospect camp. They are still playing. Could be more shortly.

  73. The Rangers are $13.803 mil below the cap to be precise. Over the summer, they can sign up $19.743 mil. If Roszival is traded, that makes it $24.743 mil to sign all RFAs and all newcomers. Even without trading him, they do have some room. Remember, they can negotiate with RFAs as long as they want if that helps keeping the number down.

  74. Henry, I doubt Mara comes back. Torts does not like for some reason going back to his years in Tampa.

  75. 19 million to play with. Hrm… Well, if Kovy gets $10 of that, Staal gets his $4 million and say Girardi re-signs for $3, that leaves only $3 to sign the other RFA’s, a back-up for Hank and another D. They could take the chance of getting another D once camp starts and they officially send Redden to Hartford.

    So many options.

  76. Gift of GAB-orik( NOW SIGN ZHERDEV!!! ) on

    is there a goalie during this thing? haha go Grachev!

  77. TheREALMikeyNJ on

    Torts doesnt like Mara, so that aint happening

    I would be fine with Sauer and Potter both being promoted

    They’ve played in HArtford long enough and are both solid 5-6 pair guys. ANd if Gilroy struggles, you switch and put one in his place. Also saves Cap space.

  78. from Andrew Gross twitter: Grachev feeds Werek for empty-netter. Red wins 6-4 at #NYRangers prospect scrimmage.

    So, Grachev had 4G, 1A for the Red team. Horak had 3G ?A for White. Seems Grachev’s year in the AHL is really setting him apart from the rest. He may be a fixture on the team by mid-season.

  79. The thing i dont get is why players arent clamouring to come to NY? Less travel, great city, brilliant facilities, over-generous GM.

  80. Dshea- I know, was just kidding..

    MickeyM- yup, the numbers are not as bad as we thought. The main problem is who is using them. I hope it’s Cam, not Glen.

  81. Carp …

    I totally agree, I said this yesterday …

    Christensen has got to be kidding right?? That guy was 1 step away from playing in Antarctica for the rest of his career … we give him a final chance when NO ONE ELSE would and he rejects contract offers ????

    What a Slap in the Face !!!!

    I felt the same way last year with Antropov … Toronto could barely get rid of him … we take him … give him a chance, then demands 5 million a year … then takes 4 million in Atlanta ???

    These players are disgusting.

    If Redden being demoted is a sure thing, then that is the ONLY time I’m for adding Kovalchuk.

    Guys like Kovalchuk and Gaborik have been doing this themselves without top notch Centers for years. Having this 2 BIG-TIME Wingers opens the door for players like AA, Dubinksy, Grachev, and Stepan to get more comfortable with playing Center in the NHL

    *Think about how well Dubi did when he had Jagr??? Then think what if we kept with that formula with AA and Kovy and Stepan with Gaborik or whatever pairing you like*

  82. Sorry guys. Just proposing an idea to cheat the system. I was going to say give him a 100 year contract worth a $100 million so that the AAV and cap hit would be $1 million. LOL!

  83. I know Grachev is listed as a center in most places on the net, but the Rangers had him switch to wing in juniors. I don’t think he has played center in 3-4 years. I wouldn’t consider him anything other than a winger at this point.

  84. Christensen is hanging around a little too much with Dublowsky, and now he’s trying to pull the same carp.

    The only difference is, Dublowsky has talent, Pee Wee is a journeyman.

    Take a walk! He needs us a hell of a lot more than we’ll ever need him.

    I’d rather see Stepan in that spot anyway.

  85. >>We can’t sign Kovy, he was a Devil. Devils don’t do good in NY!

    Speaking of the Devil [what?], it was on June 30th, 1982 that they were renamed to New Jersey Devils. The other names in the running were Meadownlanders, Blades, and Americans. Such creative and original names, eh?

  86. speZzZza? NYR ZzZz " Almost free agent frenzzzy " … says Greg L. on

    July 1st is free agency ..does that mean the players are free?

  87. Doodie Machetto on

    Guys, some things to remember re: cap space available. Redden’s contract is on the books until September. During the offseason, you can go over the cap by 10%. This year, that number will work out to just below 6 million (I forgot what the new cap ceiling is but I know it’s just under 60). So while that allowance will cancel out most of Redden’s contract, it will not cancel it all.

    Also, those of you who think that Kovy will sign for somewhere in the 7.5-8 range are crazy. He’s looking to become the highest paid player in the league. Expect him to take home at least 9. LA can easily eat that right now. Next year they have Doughty and Johnson up as RFAs, but they can use the money from Handzus and Williams’ expiring contracts to help fund their long term deals.

    Kovy to LA for around 9 million per. Right it down. If he doesn’t go there, it’ll be to the KHL for some insane sum of tax free dollars.

  88. Hey all! been a while.

    Wasn’t some of the issue with EC that Sather wanted to avoid arbitration (paying like 1mil a year against the cap?)

    Personally, I liked EC. I found his frankness concerning the team to be deeply refreshing. A bit shocked that he didn’t take the offer–what happened to the guy with nothing to lose? But, really, I wouldn’t mind seeing him back. Maybe not 1st line material, but solid. I will take solid on this team.

  89. Sather's WrapUp on

    Uncle Glennie- Here we are, Ranger Fans, Tomorrow is July 1st. I’m excited by all the anticipation. It’s just like riding a roller coaster, you know, when you finally get up to the top, and the clicking stops… Wheeeeeeee!!!!!! I hope that you’ve enjoyed this past weeks “Peek in The Box” and all that goes on here during the off-season. As you can see, its not all fun and games, the Staff really earns our millions, and the best part is none of it goes on the Cap- or to the IRS.

    “Help! I need somebody… Help! Not just anybody… Help! You know I need someone…”

    Oh-oh, that’s Dolan’s new ring tone. Jeez, that’s a bad one. He’s been in a mood ever since that game 82 shootout. And then the Knicks annual nosedive… I better answer though- “Hello there, Big Guy!!!! Beautiful Day, eh? Yeah, I’m shutting up…”

    Wow! Ten years, is it? My, how time flies, when you’re having fun. Well the Knicks haven’t gone anywhere either… What about the Bruins and Celtics? Yeah, they made the playoffs, but they eventually lost too, didn’t they? Well, I can tell you you’re not the only one that’s happy about that. Yeah, he’s the one! He HATES anything Boston…

    I don’t know what happened during the shootout. Lundqvist is usually pretty good at those. No, how could any goalie get tired playing 25 straight games to finish the season? He got a huge contract; he should play all 82. Well, as it turns out we DIDN’T need to have him rested for the playoffs.

    So now it’s my fault? My fault?! You can’t blame me… All right but, whatever you do, please, I’m begging you, DON’T force me to be your GM anymore. That’s the worst possible punishment I can think of… Please? Nooooo! Oh, you’re so cruel! Stop! All right, I’ll do it, as a personal favor, but just for 10 more years. Yeah. I’ll have the contract sent over…. (click)

    Uncle Glennie: BUHAHAHAHAHAHAHA! It’s just like taking candy from a baby Dolan…

    See Ya in September, Ranger Fans!!!!!
    (Muck, grab the golf clubs we’re outta here ‘til training camp)

  90. Doodie Machetto on

    No way. Wow, I can’t see what the thought process in Columbus was there. If you’re going to take one of the Edmonton castoffs, why not take O’Sullivan. At least he has some upside.

  91. Nigel Dawes on unconditional waivers from the Flames. Does this mean they can’t keep him on the team and must buy him out or send him down afterwards?

  92. Doodie Machetto on

    ilb, sorry, skimmed over a bunch of posts. Those are some pretty precise numbers. Well done.

  93. ilb, hit the nail on the head there. It’s whose playing with Jimmyboy’s money that is the key here. Which scares the carcillo outta me.

  94. I thought Moreau would be right up Renney’s alley as a player. Oh well. And heck no, to taking a flyer on him.

  95. Doodie Machetto on

    If I ran a team with some good size, I’d snatch up Dawes. He’s much too small to play with the little Rangers.

    When they announce “tonight’s Little Rangers!” during intermission, I always thought that they should announce the actual club that way before the game.

  96. Still shocked that Rissmiller, Voros and Naslund didn’t work out two seasons ago as that year’s rebuild. Every year it’s a scramble for something totally different. Why not Kovalchuk? Why should fans worry about salary cap issues when Sather obviously doesn’t understand what to do with salaries? A point on the power play could be nice.

  97. Doodie Machetto on

    O’Sullivan intrigued me. Not at his salary, but as a player. He’s a playmaking center. He may have worked with Gaborik. But for his cap hit, absolutely not.

  98. if you pick up O’Sullivan off of waivers, you only have to pay half of the salary, correct?

  99. Dshea, that’s only for re-entry waivers. Regular waivers entails taking on the full salary.

  100. Adam Z – got it. Not that I wanted O’Sullivan. We already had that player. Mr. FIM himself, EC.

  101. My info could be off. Zip is writing that Grachev had 3, Horak had 3, and Stepan had 2. Gross and Zip are a little off from each other. These updates are the only useful thing about Twitter.

  102. Gift of GAB-orik( NOW SIGN ZHERDEV!!! ) on


    I’m perfectly fine with that! Go Russia!

  103. Tank The Season on

    O’Sullivan was traded to PHX by Edmonton for Vandermeer for the purposes of Phoenix buying him out. Another first round bust.

  104. Wow, I step away for a while and Carp jumps on the Kovy train (well almost). I like it!!! Great discussion boys. Legitimate points made both pro and con.

    Wont be long before we’re debating about line combos!!

  105. If PHX is buying him out it would for around $1.9 mil. Hence, he could be had for around $1 mil for 1 year.

  106. Doodie Machetto on

    Can someone present me with an argument against getting Kovalchuk that is not centered around poor playoff performance? I’m pretty convinced that they should get him at this point because it would force the team to fill out the roster with youth.

  107. Doodie Machetto on

    ilb, I wouldn’t be surprised if he could be had for less. He’s got the stigma of having been bought out at 25.

    But even then, 1 year for a million for a guy who has loads of potential. Try him with Gaborik. If he doesn’t work, it’s not any more than you’re already paying Pisswiller, Virus, and Brashear to ride the buses in Hartford. Add one more to the pile. Wolf Pack could be some serious contenders!

  108. TheREALMikeyNJ on

    ANd it wont be long before were all screaming at some stupid acquistion or trade that Sather will make

    Please God, take Sather now!!

  109. Doodie- exactly my point. His max salary per year can not exceed 11.8 mil (20% of cap). Long term deal, front loaded up to that number, with cap hit of around $8.5-9 mil isn’t out of reach. Again, that will assure R&R are out and all young guns are in sooner than later.

  110. Getting Kovalchook would be good, because I think it would force Slats to drop Dredden in the minor, and possibly trade Blowzy [if possible].

    I don’t care aboot Kovalchook’s playoff performance.

    But, I don’t care whether he signs here or not. I just can’t see it happening though. His hatred for Avery is hellish.

  111. Blue Seat Horror on

    If Kovalchuk holds a grudge the Rangers aren’t even a blip on his radar after how they embarrassed him in the playoffs a few years ago.

    The Kovalchuk issue is interesting, carrying both an upside and a downside, but in the end I think I’d pass after watching him in New Jersey. When things aren’t going well he tries to do it all himself. That only works if the team around him is at least creating possible threats away from the puck carrier. The Rangers would see an increase in point production, but would not truly get good value for the money they’re going to have to lay out.

    The Rangers are guilty of standing around in the offensive zone instead of getting into a more tactical position while the puck carrier tries to do something (most often resulting in a lost puck, the puck sliding harmlessly through a crease that has not been attacked, or the puck going to an open slot after the player there has moved to the crease). Unless they can address this chronic (and I mean going back to the Jagr era and then some) issue, having Gretzky (in his prime) on the team wouldn’t help. If there’s only one threat on the ice at any time it’s pretty easy to neutralize.

    Gaborik’s numbers last year were mostly generated because he is a game-breaker and able to make something out of nothing. Near the end of last year you saw him trying to do too much because he had no help…and losing the puck alot. Imagine his production with linemates that knew where to be and how to maximize the stress he puts on opposing defenders.

    Among other things, they need to fix their timing and positioning away from the puck. (Don’t get me started on defense). I hope they do and believe they will. I think this year will be less frustrating than last year. Not going to map a parade route through Manhattan, but I do reserve the right to believe that anything can happen. That’s why I’m a fan.

  112. Doodie Machetto on

    Really, the only serious drawback I am seeing to Kovalchuk is the contract. It’s gonna be too much money for too long. Probably a no-movement clause also.

  113. To be fair, Kovalchook did play in a system he’s not used to playing in, and still put up decent number as a Debbie.

    And I doubt Kovalchook is that much of a baby that he would not sign with a team cause they defended him perfectly in the playoffs. That doesn’t make sense.

  114. Great points made by many. I hope Dolan’s crew takes note.

    However, one aspect that doesn’t get any mention is character. After watching with disgust how Girardi fell asleep on his skates while Gaborik got pummeled last season, I think every player should also be judged by how much of a ‘team’ mentality he will add. Note Clarkson signing with the Devils. Some are saying he is overpaid given his production but this is a guy I would want in a foxhole when the sh*t is flying.

  115. I think Dolan is so focused on delivering Lebron James to NYC that he probably doesn’t give a damn about our poor Rangers ;)

  116. Carp….The idea of checking out Kovy is worth the look as long as Dredden and Rosy are wearing another uniform. Call up Renney, he likes Rosy. I’d like to see the Rangers somehow add Exelby for defensive toughness and add a backup Goaltender. Let the kids battle it out for the rest of the roster spots……….Mike

  117. Doodie, yeah, that’s the biggest thing with Kovalchuk.

    Now if Sather could somehow trade Rozi today for idk, someone who can play center decently and isn’s making a ton(names are escaping me at the moment), then he goes out and gets Kovalchuk AND say Z. Michalek, that would be two pretty darn good days for ol’Darth.

  118. Doodie Machetto on

    I don’t think Clarkson is overpaid at all. I would gladly pay him that salary. The guy has size, can pot 20, and can drop the gloves. For 2.66, that’s about right. Look what we pay Drury to kill penalties!

    Here’s a topic for debate. Topic: Marc Staal offer sheet. Staal is holding out because 3.5 million wasn’t enough from Slats. Let’s say he gets an offer sheet. Now, the offer sheet can play out two ways: He gets an offer sheet of about 4 million a year, and our compensation would be a first and a third. If he gets an offer sheet for any amount higher than that, we would get a 1st, 2nd, and a 3rd. So, what would you do if he got an offer sheet of 4-6 years at the following salaries: 4 million per (1st and 3rd), 4.5 million per (1,2, and 3), 5 million per (1,2, and 3), or 5.5 per (two 1sts, one 2, one 3).

    I would match for 4 no question. I would let him walk for 5.5 no question. 4.5 I would probably match unless it was Edmonton, in which case, I would let him walk because of the chance that would be a lottery pick. 5 I would match unless the team making the offer was a non-playoff Western team, or a bottom feeding Eastern team that isn’t the Islanders.

  119. Doodie Machetto on

    BTW, the reason my prior post said 2 ways is because I don’t think there’s any way he attracts 5.5.

  120. I would let Staal walk if he got $4 million offer sheet. Then turn around and sign Hamhuis or Volchenkov for that money and have a 1st and 3rd round pick. As good as Staal is, he has some real limitations and I think it’s time to give some young kids a look.

  121. If Kovy replaces Redden and and Rozy’s salary (which is about the only way they could fit him), then it’s fine. That’s a trade I would take any day of the week.

    Hell, I would take a 4th line winger for Redden & Rozy, nevermind a 40-50 goal scorer.

    However, if they can’t dump the R&R boys, then anything else they could do to fit Kovy would cripple the team and isn’t worth it.

  122. Doodie Machetto on

    Vitaly, Staal is 23! He’s the 2nd youngest defenseman on the team (MDZ is 20). Do you want to strap some skates on an infant?

  123. NYRanger4Life on

    All – I know we are all excited (understatement) about the prospect of Dredden being sent down to the minors. People are already spending the “possible” money saved on other players.

    I for one don’t see this happening. Not only will Sather have to man up on this for making a MONUMENTAL mistake signing him, wont the NHLPA raise some concerns with it? Wont it send the wrong message to the rest of the NHL? Potential Free Agents? Teams like Columbus, Edmonton, Carolina, and Nashville would never have the resources to send $6.5 million down to the AHL.

    I prey it happens…but I’m cautiously optimistic at this point.

  124. Am I Taking Crazy Pills ????

    Christensen who has admitted he has confidence problems holds out for more ???

    Nigel Dawes gets waived.. say it aint so ??

    Mark Messier on WFAN saying Torts was the reason for our success last season ?

    Tonight 8 PM Ranger Draft Overview Show w/ Glen, Gordie & Jess Rubenstein

  125. Mister Delaware on

    “As good as Staal is, he has some real limitations and I think it’s time to give some young kids a look.”

    Staal is 23.

  126. LMAO @ letting Staal go! I think they will settle with him at around $3.75 mil for 4-5 years.

  127. NYRangers- NHLPA has very little to say about it. It’s in CBA agreement, signed by both parties.

  128. If Staal gets offered 5.5, I would think about letting him walk for about 2 minutes before matching. As others have pointed out, he’s ONLY 23 and would be a 2/3 on just about any other team in league. Does he need to work on aspects of his game? Of course he does, but name me one player in the league that doesn’t. Staal’s a keeper.

  129. Doodie Machetto on

    Rod the Bod is retiring. HOF? I think he merits consideration, but he isn’t a lock. Depends on who isn’t in by the time he is eligible. He’s got solid numbers, but it’s more of that been around forever than being an elite player. What I like about him though is that he wasn’t just offense but was a great two-way player and even won 2 Selkes late in his career. He also captained a Cup winner.

  130. Doodie Machetto on

    Staal wouldn’t be a 1st pairing defenseman on about half the teams in the league. On 1 or 2 of them, he wouldn’t even be a 2nd pairing. And you would pass on two 1sts, a 2nd, and a 3rd without giving it real consideration?

    Let’s say he somehow garnered a Redden contract: 4 1st round picks is the compensation, not to mention the crazy salary. What then?

  131. I would take 3-4 first round picks for anyone on the team….

    ….unless Sather is the one doing the drafting.

  132. >>Mark Messier on WFAN saying Torts was the reason for our
    >>success last season ?

    Bwahahaha! Success? Not only is Messier The Greatest Leader in Sports, he’s also The Greatest Comedian?

  133. I don’t understand how Messier can use the word “success” regarding last season.

    Though, if it were Renney coaching, then we would have been in the bottom five.

    Which would have been a good thing.

  134. No to Kovy. We dont need another soft player that’s supposed to score goals and not do much else, I would rather bring back Zherdev way before sign Kovy, not to mention we need to stop giving out 7-8 million dollar contracts otherwise we will have 0 depth.

    Staal i would probably let walk for anything more than 4.5 considering the team he is signed by(4.5+ is 2 1st 1 2nd 1 3rd iirc). But i doubt anyone expecting to pick in the top 10 in the next 2 years will even touch any RFAs.

  135. if we let staal go for draft picks we can bring up a hartford kid. let the kids play.

  136. calad would that include the rangers as one of the top ten teams picking draft wise

  137. But Staal is a known commodity in the league. He can play and play well. With the draft, even with 2 1sts, those players could turn out to be Hugh Jessiman all over again. Frankly, I’d rather take the one playing in the league now over a player/players that may never make it.

  138. This year probably, but I think next year there will be some significant improvement (unless they call up a lot of kids this year and they play well)

  139. but mcdonagh is only 21 so we get younger than staal. plus all those picks coming here so we get even younger.

  140. I don’t care aboot Staal. If he wants to be a piece of brash*t, then let him walk.

    It’s time to let all the players and prospects know that this kind of carp wont be tolerated.

    This is how it will be for as long as Slats is here. He’ll be getting bullied by kids, demanding a huge amount of money that they don’t deserve.

    It’s sickening. And it’s all his fault for bringing in guys like Dreary, Dredden, Blowzy, etc. to be their role models.

  141. Exactly, MikeyM. Who is also 23 year old. And don’t even think that anyone will sign him for more than 4 per year. His brother is making that and is already a much more accomplished player.

  142. Doodie Machetto on

    “(4.5+ is 2 1st 1 2nd 1 3rd iirc). ”

    4.5 will only be one first, not two. The cap has risen since the CBA was agreed to, and accordingly, the offer sheet ranges have risen too. Last season, from about 3.9 to about 5.2 was a 1st, a 2nd, and a 3rd. This year, it will probably be about 4.1 to hit the 1, 2, & 3. To hit two firsts will take about 5.4.

  143. McDonaugh is probably going back to college. But hey, let’s sign my 4 year old nephew. I’m sure he could handle St Louis.

  144. Doodie Machetto on

    Why give up so many draft picks for Ryan when you can sign Kovalchuk for just money?

  145. How does 4 years younger, ~3 million more in cap space, a bit more sandpaper sound for starters? From what i have read Anaheim and Ryan have been having trouble coming to an agreement so they are looking into moving his rights.

  146. hockey is all about chemistry. lets go with the youth and give Torts a chance to mold them the way he sees fit. then we may really have a TeAM and not just a patchwork of players. we have seen year after year that FA signings dont work. they need 2-3 months to get used to playing together, and by then the heat is on and everyone is pissed off. lets build a TEAM

  147. Doodie Machetto on

    Ryan will cost at least two firsts, a second, and a third if he goes by offer sheet, and he could possibly be in that 4 firsts range. Anaheim knows this and won’t move his rights unless the package that they get back in return is worth something comparable to that.

  148. Doodie Machetto on

    I think the Rangers end up with an overpaid middling player. Matt Lombardi at some insane number like 5 per year or Volchenkov for 5.5. Something stupid.

  149. Rather than Kovy, I’d like to see Sather go for Spezza, the need is for a center…I hear he’s a great team player, [passer, scorer and an all around good guy both on the ice and in the locker roon.

  150. Doodie Machetto on

    howiehockey, if we are going to make a move for a #1 center, I’d rather go for Savard. Could probably be had for less than Spezza, has a better contract, and is one of the game’s premiere playmakers.

  151. thanks for all the kind words yesterday in regards to
    my Newfoundland who died yesterday.

    sucks that i’m among such growing company (grieving pet owners) but nice to know that i’m also among people who understand.

    thanks for all the nhl/Rangers news and give-and-take.

    pop over here every so often just to keep up with things.
    just don’t have much to say right now
    other than i’ll be shocked if it’s not another bumpy ride comin’ up!

  152. Mister Delaware on

    “My little cousin is 12. Maybe they can sign him. LET THE KIDS PLAY!”

    Your cousin will probably just ask for too much money. Hey players, we don’t want to hear you ask for market value anymore, not when we’re trying to get around our salary cap mistakes! Just suck it up!

  153. Didn’t the Devils trade for Kovalchuk because they needed a scorer? How’d that work out for them?

    If they are going to spend $9 or $10 in free agency I’d rather they spent it on 2 $4.5 million guys than 1 guy. That is, of course, if those $4.5 million guys are actually worth that much.

  154. Mister Delaware on

    Are the mid-tier free agents in most sports the more frequent mistakes? Guys who are the best available and thus overpriced? Like if everyone were an FA, Kovalchuk would still get a ton of money. A lot of the available mid-tier guys wouldn’t. Smart GMs avoid them, atleast on LT deals.

  155. Blue Seat Horror on

    Good point Kevin.

    I often read the opinion that the Rangers are nothing more than a collection of 3rd liners. F that. I bet if those third liners had been collected in say Detroit’s system they would have been a hell of a lot more competitive, because Detroit actually has a well defined system and this…chemistry…of which you speak.

    On the flip side, if Zetterberg or Datsyuk were to come here, he’d regress to nothing greater than 3rd line play.

    The correct assessment would be that the Rangers lack of system is a 3rd line generating machine.

    I seriously just wish, as Carp wrote the other day, that they’d build from the farm instead of importing a team. Focus on the game they’re playing instead of the names on the uniforms. Then bringing in a player like Kovalchuk or Spezza or Bobby Ryan would have a tremendous impact. If things continue as they were last year, they’ll just be urinating away cash and player careers.

  156. bull dog line on

    Blue seat,
    I think every Ranger fan would love to build with the farm. but truth be told it is no a viable option for the Rangers. you need big time skill up front to win now. the Rangers do not have that in there system. in order to get the Towes, and Kane’s of this league you have to finish at the bottom a couple of years in a row. A thought that a few posters have had here. problem is, the Rangers have Hank, he is never going to allow them to be bad enough to get the draft picks needed to become the Hawks, and Pens.
    unless you tell me you are willing to trade Hank (I am) they are never going to be that bad.
    so signing Kovalchuk, to add to this team, makes more sense than staying pat and continuing to be mediocre.

  157. Gift of GAB-orik( NOW SIGN ZHERDEV!!! ) on

    If we had lost a handful more games during that late stretch to finish the season, the Rangers would have been near the bottom of the pile. They just missed the playoffs, and just missed having a top 5 pick. It was the worst case scenario all around.

  158. signing kovy doesn’t disrupt anything — unless you believe grachev is going to be a first liner this year and score 45 goals. gaborik/kovy on the power play with del zotto is a nice thought.

  159. Gift of GAB-orik( NOW SIGN ZHERDEV!!! ) on

    i think it’s going to be a big impact year for Artie. If Grachev comes up, and Kovy comes along… we could have a nice Russian connection… not saying they would all be on the same line, but that would be some chemistry.

  160. Doodie Machetto on

    A Russian connection just like the one he had with Lisin? Just saying that being from the same country doesn’t really mean anything.

  161. Buzz Eklund says:

    “They are up to something. No doubt. Rumors now that Marc Staal could be included in a pitch for a top line player…One source speculated we could see Dubinsky and Staal for Spezza and Volchenkov’s rights.”

    Wouldn’t it be smarter to clear some cap room and sign Kovy than make idiotic trades. This, of course, supposes that anything Eklund says is based in reality — which I’m sure it isn’t.

  162. Gift of GAB-orik( NOW SIGN ZHERDEV!!! ) on

    the connection would require Kovy. Lisin… well he was another Prucha.

  163. Yeah, that would be dumb. I’d much rather have Kovalchook than Spezza, if it’s even possible to get him.

    I have to say, the huge contract aside, it would be nice to see Kovalchook and Del Z on the point, with Butt-chin Gabby down low.

    Trading for Volchenkov’s rights would be idiotic. He wont sign with us!

  164. Gift of GAB-orik( SATHER NEEDS TO BE PRUCHA'D ) on

    If the hypothetical(and i can’t imagine actually an option) deal went down… Staal and Dubie for Spezza and Vols rights…. i would vomit. Instantly. Wherever I was.

    Though i guess i can make arguments for both sides.

  165. Blue Seat Horror on

    Sorry for the delayed response. They actually expect me to work at work.

    Good points Bull Dog, and you’re right. You need to stank to get the good picks..or trade Phil Kessel. Imagine what it must feel like to be the best player in juniors only to be drafted to the worst team in the NHL with many “rebuilding” years ahead of you and everyone expecting you to be a savior.

    However, big time skill up front is nothing if there is no support. Ask Atlanta. Hence my desire to see the Rangers form an identity before they handcuff themselves with another big contract and waste their time trying to find someone who can play with Kovalchuk. Let the system come first and find a star who will fit into the system instead of using significant cap space to get someone else’s star and spend half the season trying to adapt a system to him.

  166. To answer a question with a question, what GM in his right mind is going to give Staal an offer sheet that it out of the range of what the Rangers will give him? If they go to $4.5 the Rangers will match in a heartbeat. They’d have to go much higher. If they did (they won’t) then I’d let him walk.

    For those who don’t want Kovalchuk, and I’m not sure I would, does that mean you forfeit your right to complain that the Rangers have only one first-line player next season (and maybe for seasons to come)?

  167. Doodie Machetto on

    Carp, thanks for the answer. It was just a hypothetical. I agree that no team will offer him more than 4.5, and they would have to be crazy even to offer him that.

    Sather’s poor cap structuring has brought this upon himself. Remember the deal he gave Tyutin? 4 years at 2.85 per. Tyutin was a 2nd pairing guy at the time, but the cap was about 5 million lower too. And now you have Staal, who is CLEARLY our #1 defenseman, and you only offer him 700k more per year?

    Forget Rozsi and Redden as comparables. Sather can possibly explain those two away as non-comparables. Redden was being paid based on his past performances and expectations that he would be a an all-star defenseman, PP QB, and we had to overpay because he was a UFA. Rozsival, he could say, had been our top defenseman for two years coming out of the lockout, coming off of consecutive double digit goal seasons, had incredible plus/minus, and he was a veteran pending UFA with more negotiating leverage. They aren’t great explanations, but they are explanations nonetheless.

    What’s the explanation for Tyutin? There is none. He gave his 2nd pairing defenseman 2.85 per in a smaller cap. I said at the time that Tyutin’s deal would rupture our salary structure. Sure enough, that summer he dished out a massive raise to Rozsi and dished out the insane Redden contract.

    The NHL has passed Sather by. He just doesn’t have what it takes to build a winning team any longer.

  168. Carp, I believe boneheads forfeit no right to complain about anything! In fact, I think complaining, about anything, is in the boneheads bill of rights :)
    (oh my, we need a bonehead bill of rights!)

    you all have my head spinning on the Kovalchuk issue (he doesn’t qualify as Kovy until he becomes a Ranger, I think). I’m leaning toward no? I don’t know. argh!

    P.S. My lovely Carp-supplied Rangers calendar for July has the dreaded R’s together. This makes me laugh. But I hope it’s not an omen…..

  169. Gift of GAB-orik( SATHER NEEDS TO BE PRUCHA'D ) on

    Free agency is upon us, and the checkbook is slowly opening. What if Sather put his pen away? HISTORY WILL BE MADE.

  170. Gift of GAB-orik( SATHER NEEDS TO BE PRUCHA'D ) on


    i’m sure we can get you 4-5 years, utilities guaranteed, with a club option for LIPA and Keyspan included. Plus… i think he can get you a sweet deal on Cablevision.

  171. Carp, as someone who doesn’t want Kovi here i’ll say this- We may not have more than one first line player but that’s better than taking on another albatrose- like contract for a player who isn’t a proven winner.

    I know he’s talented and in his prime but we’ve all watched him fall apart in the playoffs. Atlanta leaned on him and he spent the series running from (and after) Avery. The Devils looked to him during their brief playoff appearance this year and look at how that worked out.

    I’d rather have time to see if Anisimov and Grachev are going to amount to anything and either have the cap space or the money that would have been invested in Kovi given to someone who can bring both the talent and the intangibles needed to make this a better team that can compete for real. If that means another couple seasons of garbage then I say it’s better than waiting for another terrible contract to expire on some yo yo who can’t get it done in NY.

  172. I vote we kidnap Sather for the months of July and August and make him do all our chores that we hate. We can pass him from house to house, kinda like the Cup, only without the partying aspect. That way Schoney will have to make all the decisions and he’s much more rational than Sather is at this point.

  173. Doodie Machetto on

    “another albatrose- like contract for a player who isn’t a proven winner. ”

    Weren’t the Drury and Gomez contracts sold to us as “proven winners?”

    James, the guy has been in two playoff series. That’s hardly a representative sample. But even looking at those, it’s not like the guy was totally at fault

    In the ATL series, his whole team was overmatched and his coach expected too much of a leadership role from him when he wasn’t ready (23, his first playoff series). Marian Hossa, who is typically a strong playoff performer, had but 1 point (an assist) in that series. They also had the Tkachuk curse (13 playoff appearances, 3 series victories). You can’t just point to Kovalchuk.

    As for the Devils, Kovalchuk, I thought, was the one player on that team to really show up. He led the team in goals and points. Granted it was only 2 goals and 4 assists in 5 games, but when the rest of his team was a no show (ie: Parise 1g, 3a; Elias 0g, 4a) you can’t say it’s on Kovalchuk.

    Also, something I just noticed about Kovalchuk in looking up his age at the time of the Atlanta series: He’s a big dude! He’s listed at 6’2″, 230!

  174. Dont know if JPG has been around today, but if you have, I hope you’re recovering, and remembering all the great memories of your great puppy.

  175. Christianson is 1st line stuff , not the tawdry sum being offered him .At least that is the way he is thinking. Besides 7/1 opens up alot of other avenues.

  176. Gabby, I’ll take that deal! even the free cablevision would save me serious bucks!

    No more albatrosses!!

    MickeyM, Oh man, I could keep him busy at my place! cat hair galore!

    CR, that was sweet, and I second that.

    I would love to be in the position to say no to $825,000.

  177. Christensen said in an interview last year that the Rangers were his last chance. Did I miss something where he is worth more than 825K ?

    Good Luck and on 8/1 if you knock on Uncle Glennie’s door the offer will be 500K.

  178. sign modano, bring back shanny, and then get tkachuk and guerin. screw the kids. they cant handle a wet dream, how are they gonbna help us win? with those 4 and then captain geritol drury at the helm, we got it where it counts. experience, adult diapers and a leader who really knows how to treat a mouthpiece. not liek kane. boy cant even put teeth marks with his little baby teeth. its like watchin a baby suck on his pacifier. now drury. he knows how to handle a fiesty mouthguard

  179. brodeur was teh one who blew it for them. kovy was fine in the playoffs. their d isnt that great either. brodeur needs to either retire or they need to get a decent backup so hes able to sustain a full year and playoffs

  180. CR9
    you regularly confuse the heck out of me
    i thank you very much (and everyone else)
    for their kind words and thoughts in regards to
    my Newfound passing away.

  181. Doodie they may have been sold to us as “proven winners” but I sure wasnt buying it.

    I understand that he’s only been to the playoffs twice but honestly there didn’t seem to be much of a difference between his performance on an outmatched team and his performance on a team that was picked to go deep. In fact playoffs aside, I don’t think of him as a leader or a player who can turn a team into a winner. I’m just not high on the guy.

    It’s funny. Drury had (or was sold as having) all those qualities and I didn’t think for a second that he was worth 7 million bucks a year. No way do we pay Kovalchuk 10.

  182. Mama, free cable and internet is the best thing about working for a cable company. And the one benefit that people are most upset about losing when they leave the cable company.

    Hrm, that makes me wonder- do the Rangers and Knicks have to pay for their cable or do they get it for free as well?

  183. And Mike I wasn’t trying to imply that Kovalchuk was THE reason that NJ lost. I was just saying that I didn’t think he’s the answer for us. especially not for the money.

  184. You’re welcome jpg. And I know it takes a while….but the hurt will pass. Not be gone, but pass and ease.

    mike, heck, I’d even be sent down and be benched for Basher’s pay!

    OK, all, I know tomorrow is a big day and thankfully Carp will be here. I’ll be reading, but got my own carp at work so…..catch up when I can. LGR!!!

  185. wicky, I never said TA so this doesn’t count…

    MickeyM….ha! probably, but at their salaries, not feeling so bad about the bill.

    OK, TA!

  186. Doodie Machetto on


    4 points in 5 games is hardly a no show”

    Maybe not a no show, but it was a disappointing show from a guy with 38 goals and 82 points.

  187. wicky (Let's Go Rangers!!!) on

    Anything over 4 mil per year, I don’t match and take the picks for staal (at this point on an offer sheet that is). No offer sheet, I don’t pay the guy more than 4.5 period.

    At this point it would seem stupid to me to trade for volchenkov’s rights unless you are just trying to move a potential salary (ie girardi). If it was a week or so ago, yes, trade for his rights, but less than a day away….silly!

    A big fat no to nik Z or paul martin (please please please no more vanilla d men, we have so damn many now)!

    thanks for looking out!!!!

  188. OMG MickeyM…saw that movie on a class trip a million years ago. Perfect for this blog: “For God’s Sake John Sit Down”

    Good job….and second and real TA!

  189. alright kids enjoy Xmas in July tomorrow. I’ll catch up with yous after work

    Carp- thanks in advance for the coverage!

  190. The guy who plays John in MickeyM’s video is William Daniels. I saw him twice (twice!) during my last trip to LA. (St. Elsewhere anyone?)
    Sorry, just had to share that. I wicky’d….TA!

  191. Kovalchuk’s not only a bull, but he’s got an edge, isn’t afraid to go after people or drop’em, nor throw the body – nor stick up for his teammates.

    It’s not that hard to check YouTube and see for yourself,instead of this ridiculous internet thing where people just repeat the same baseless bullsh*t over & over.

    Did anybody critiquing Kovalchuk’s playoff performances acutally watch the games? Cause the guy busted his ass every shift. Just so happens his team was flat and got beat.

    Look at the long term history of the player. Drafted and expected to carry a new franchise with little-to-no-help for quite some time, he met, then exceeeded expectations.

    Except for coming up one goal short his first season (29 in just 65 games), he’s basically had 8-straight 30-plus goal years, 35+ in 7 straight, 40+ in 6, and 50+ twice.

    642 pts in 621 games. Also, 12+ PPGs in 6 straight years, including 27 in 2005. And that’s with teams keying on him, which presumably would with Gaborik manning the opposite side.

    He’s also a total workhorse, 76+ games for 7 years straight (how’s that for a jinx?).


    Numbers aside, he gives the Rangers program maybe it’s best chance to FINALLY turn the corner, and live or die largely on what Sather’s picks and trades bear.

    Let’s see what info trickles out, but Messier, Leetch & Co. had BEST be waiting on his doorstep at midnight.

  192. The only big name i want the rangers to be signing tomorrow is Demitra for a year or two. Maybe Zbynek Michalek for a nice stay at home defenceman and replacement for Redden/Rozy when they finally are shipped out of new york.

    A thrashers friend of mine (hes russian, so he loves kovalchuk) said that Kovy is a very talented player with great hands, but he takes shifts off (like we knew) and does not play hard in the board and in the corners (big surprise). Besides, his skillset pretty much overlaps most of what gaborik has. We don’t need another sniper, we need a pivot or two and some bite on the backline.

  193. I admire the useful information and facts you provide inside your articles. I will bookmark your blog and have my children verify up right here generally. I’m quite sure they’ll discover lots of new things right here than anyone else!

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