With Mike Modano landing in Detroit, it reminds us of a couple of things.
One, a veteran with not much tread left on his tires can fit into a strong lineup. Modano will probably be very, very good in Detroit, though a shadow of the old Modano. (Besides, Detroit has always had old guys, including the older-than-dirt Chris Chelios).
Two, there are still a ton of unrestricted free agents out there. Granted they are all old, and many of them broken down, if not just declining. But if a team’s GM has a little cap space left and needs to fill a hole, this might be the way to go.
I don’t think the Rangers are close enough to contending where signing one of these guys would make a lot of sense. But a team that’s got enough talent and just needs some leadership and a role player could get a bargain there.
If the Rangers felt one of these guys could help them get into the playoffs, well, it wouldn’t be the worst thing in the world to sign a veteran to a one-year deal. But the direction in which they are going dictates that they leave some roster spots open for competition to some of the prospects.
NHL.com has begun its 30-in-30 month, with a daily story on each team as it heads into the season. The Rangers are scheduled for Aug. 21.