Brad Richards? I just don’t know; Drury’s out (updated)

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MORNING UPDATE, 9:12 A.M.: In case you missed it, Larry Brooks of the Post had a statement from Chris Drury thanking the Rangers and their fans for his time in New York, and a buyout is expected today. Which clears cap space for our next topic of discussion.

(also, just a matter of when Ryan Callahan is named the next captain of the New York Rangers).

———————————-

Here’s what I do know about the Brad Richards Sweepstakes (click here for a laugh). I know I’m glad I don’t have to make this decision by Friday, the way Glen Sather and his staff must.

See here’s the thing. Last year, I was kind of waffling the same way on Ilya Kovalchuk, who was going to be a lot more expensive, but who was easily one of the top half dozen or so players in the game, and who was still on the front nine of his prime. I thought, if the cap would allow, that he might be something cool to go out and buy, and you’d have him for a very long time.

Then I got a whiff that the Rangers weren’t going to be seriously involved — despite what one of our trolls tried to insist — and I lost interest.

The Rangers are almost surely going to be seriously involved this time. And I’m waffling again, far more so than on Kovalchuk.

PROS:

1) The Rangers desperately need an upgrade in skill. They have one-third of a first line, and that won’t get it done, especially when the one-third played like a third-liner last year. They desperately need a guy who can make plays, and can get the puck to Marian Gaborik. They desperately need a player who can QB the power play. And take faceoffs.

I’ve said this before, the Rangers will be a serious contender the day that Ryan Callahan and Brandon Dubinsky are on the second line and the second power play (and nobody thinks more highly of Callahan than I do, and few think as highly of Dubinsky as I do).

Richards fills all of those holes. Even though some theorize that Gaborik is the type of winger who doesn’t need a premier playmaker (he scored 42 two years ago, on his own, pretty much), he surely needs a center better than Erik Christensen.

2) He is still, indeed in his prime. He is, obviously, a big-time player — he won the Conn Smythe for the Stanley Cup champion Tampa Bay Lightning. He sure knows John Tortorella, and vice versa. He apparently wants to come to New York to whatever degree. He’s an assist guy who can score goals, too, a skater who will fit Tortorella’s system, a proven point man.

3) The Rangers may not be one player away, but they are a lot closer than they’ve been in years … if they can upgrade their skill at key positions. This team has been about tomorrow for a little while, and eventually it has to start thinking about today. And we know that the Rangers went after Richards in March, but were smart enough to not give up the future to get him. Now here he is.

CONS:

1) $$,$$$,$$$. Forget about Richards taking a discount to play for Torts, or to play in New York. He’s not coming here cheap. He’s probably going to the highest bidder, and there will be bidders: Toronto, probably L.A., maybe Philly (I think so, anyway), the Rangers, who knows what other teams will jump in. So it’s going to take big, big dollars and a long-term deal that will take him well into his late 30s, and probably a no-move. Most guys go for the last nickel in these sweepstakes.

In other words, you’re looking at a contract that could be Redden-like, or Drury-like down the road … and the salary cap could be going down. In other words, whatever Richards brings now could be very costly later. Could be an absolute albatross. Try to imagine what it will look like in 2014, 2015, 2016.

2) As good as Richards is, he’s not a top-10 or even a top-20 player in the NHL. Not. Sorry. He isn’t. He’s very, very good. Right off the bat, he’s one of the Rangers’ three best players. But he’s not going to do things that other superstars in the NHL can do. And what the heck happens if his numbers start going down?

3) His head. If I were a GM, concussions would send me screaming. I’ve seen them end Rangers careers of Pat LaFontaine, Eric Lindros, Mike Richter, Jeff Beukeboom and others. We know that concussions are cumulative, that those who have had them are more susceptible, that the next will probably be worse than the last, and that it takes much less to cause the next one and the next one. I just don’t know if I’d be willing to go shopping for a recently-concussed player at any cost, no matter what his name or game. I’d be scared to death.

4) The next CBA. To repeat, the cap is probably going to go down. Maybe there will be terms in there to allow teams to get out from under contracts signed under the current CBA. Maybe.

5) The history of UFA. You could count on very few fingers the number of big-ticket free agents who signed and delivered big-time, start-to-finish of their contracts. The Rangers’ record in UFA signing is worse than most, if not all. And I don’t have to go into specific examples, do I? No. Look at it the other way: how many UFAs have the Rangers signed, historically, that did work out as hoped?

In other words, this thing could blow up in the Rangers’ faces a lot of ways.

Or … Richards could come in and be a star and get Gaborik going, and get the PP going, and who knows? Maybe, if they don’t have too many sophomore slumps and add another couple of pieces, they can be the Boston Bruins.

The fewer pros might outweight the cons. Richards makes this team better. But at what cost, and how long will he last, and can he perform to the level of his contract?

I don’t know.

——————–

AP photo, above.

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349 Comments

  1. Reading Brooks’ article, I allowed myself to gag one last time at how every single story ever written about Chris Drury has to include “uncanny ability to rise to the occasion in the clutch, the Big Moment Kid from Trumbull, Conn.”

    At least we won’t have to put up with that PR propaganda anymore. And MSG can burn the tape of “MSG Profiles: Chris Drury” which was put into heavier rotation than Def Leppard’s “Pour Some Sugar On Me” in the summer of ’88

    So, Dreary is gone…

    As for Richards, I KNOW Sather will overpay him. That’s what he always does. But the simple truth is we DO NOT have a #1 center and DO NOT have anybody to run the PP. If Richards fills those two holes, great.

    There’s no way for this to end well. Richards will not be worth whatever his contract is in another 3-4 years. That’s Rangers’ history talking. But hopefully, just hopefully, he can be part of a team that had one hell of an identity last season and just might show something better this season.

    One thing I don’t know about Richards is his demeanor. What’s he like in the locker room?

    And let’s hear it loud and clear: The Captain of the New York Rangers – Ryan Callahan!

  2. Captain callahan may be the most important change for this upcoming season Richards or no richards

  3. CJP

    agree with everything you just said although the way i see it, Richards fills a spot on the team that we desperately need and cannot fill internally for at least another 5 years.

    While I still think the Rangers would be better served using their tremendous farm system and trading for someone younger like Stastny or Spezza, the simple fact that Sather has an uncanny ability to make trades and the fact that Dolan is 100% willing to send players to Buffalo makes the bad contract easier to swallow…

  4. If the contract is 5 years then great, if its 7 or 8 years then its too risky.
    With the lack of a #2 option the bidding could get ridiculous, Slats need to find a point when he should step back and start looking at the trade market, we’re rarely going to own a high 1st round draft pick and we have a glut of good young defensemen (mostly stay-at-homers) so why not put together a package to grab someone? (Sharp, Jordan Staal ect).

    I also saw the Post story on the departure of the Clutchmobile, but i’ll wait for the official word (and to see how the cap space is used) before i celebrate.

  5. UK Rangers

    Drury said in a statement that was sent to The Post by e-mail. “The Rangers are a first-class organization with great people in the hockey, public relations, team services and community relations departments. “I would also like to thank Ranger fans. They always inspired me to do the best I could in whatever role I was asked to play. Playing before them in the Garden was a thrill of a lifetime. I wish all the fans and the entire Ranger organization the best of luck in the future.”

    He’s gone…

  6. Onecupin72yearsandcounting on

    As far as concussions go, they seem to be on the rise ,partly due to better medical screening.
    I think most players have had them , some worse than others with awful lingering effects.
    Let’s say the Crosby was available , would you sign him long term with his medical history ?

    I think sather will throw the bank at him like he always does and not worry about his medical history..he won’t worry about the future woes of the cap.. he hopefully won’t be here and will leave the mess to Mess to clean up.

  7. Carp, I think the cons outweigh the pros. The two things that scare me the most are he is not worth the money he is looking for and the specter of a recurring concussion. He will continue to hamstring their cap situation for another 5+ years. I think they have to hope our centers continue to develope. Their not power play quaterbacks but they are improving and Tortorella has to improve what they do on the powerplay more than anything. I player is not going to improve that. McCabe proved that point.

  8. oleo, I agree with you 100% in regards to Richards filling a hole that the Rangers simply cannot fill internally. In fact, he fills a hole that’s been gaping for quite some time.

    That he can deal with Tortorella is also important. I loved what Torts did last season, but if he’s gonna have HBO 24/7 on his back this season…it’s likely to bring out his “color” ;-)

    It’s July 1st…Sather will overpay and overextend. It’s in his nature.

    But on the bright side, no matter what he gives Richards…it’s still GOTTA be better than Drury, Gomez or Redden.

    Right?

    Gulp…right?

    LOL

  9. my two cents,

    i would rather have stastny than richards. a trade for him is still possible. (girardi, MZA, gilroy’s rights and a 3rd or 4th rd draft pick maybe?)

    i think richards will work though as 1st line center for gabby and more importantly a PP QB
    (6yrs-$7.5million)

    i would love to see erik cole on the wing with gabby and richards. he still can fly on the wing!
    (3yrs-$11million he made 2.9/yr last contract)

  10. nyr13

    lol you mean Del Zotto, Anisimov, Zuccarello, Valentenko’s rights and a 1st rounder. Thats what you meant right?

  11. OK, Carp. You made up my mind for me. Go get Richards. Yes, the Rangers have been stupid in free agency, but it was more because of putting a player where he didn’t belong. Drury and Gomez were not scorers. They had a good year scoring, but over the life of their careers they were not. Yet, the Rangers wanted them to be first liners. Redden was done and everybody knew it except Sather. Yet he was brought in to QB the power play.

    Richards is not any of this. He’s a legitimate first line center. He’s not over the hill. He had a concussion – BIG DEAL. Everybody in the league has probably had a concussion at one time or another. It’s just that some are diagnosed and some are not.

    Go get him. As for the money – they have people on the payroll that are paid to deal with that. I don’t care. Pay the man and then go out and get another one. They’ll figure out how to pay these guys.

  12. And This One Will Last A Lifetime on

    Carp:

    Great recap/analysis…here is the conclusion based on the outline…an old quote….

    “”Take Risks – If You Win You Will Be Happy. If You Lose You Will Be Wise”

    sign Richards (but do not overpay…but go ahead and pay full market value)

    BTW…I really did think Pitkanen was

  13. And This One Will Last A Lifetime on

    oops…to finish the thought…I really did think Pitkanen was a good fit for us and if we don’t get B.R. I would like to land him instead.

  14. oleo,

    i meant girardi because av’s will want at least one proven NHLer for stastny. plus, you have to trade from depth, obviously young d-men are rangers strength.

    how is this for you? girardi, MZA, Valentenko and christensen?

  15. Carp, I’m am with you on this; on the fence!!! What would’ve tipped me over to the “get him” side would be if he was 28 or 29. & year contract and he’s done @ 35. Now, we all know Sather will throw a boat load of money & years at him and at age 31, he will be on our payroll at the age of 39!!!! Who knows, really. What we do know is that Sather will outbid EVERYONE to get him and that means an albatross contract. It’s in his blood since he left Edmonton! I mean, how is it possible that the system doesn’t have any centers that could come in here in 2 or 3 years and be an impact player? Is Artie that man? Not sure.

  16. i guess I didn’t get through to you.

    Stastny is going to cost a ton and both the offers you proposed are a joke. There is no way you can get him without giving up at least two of Erixon, McDonagh, Del Zotto, Anisimov, Stepan, Krieder, Thomas, Dubinsky plus a 1st round pick. And that might not even be enough.

    Stastny is younger and better than Dubinsky or Callahan. Its laughable you think he can be had for Girardi and spare parts…

  17. Agree with oleo- Stastny will take an arm and a leg. And we do have enough blue chips and young NHLers to make that trade. He would be worth it. But I don’t think he is on the block anymore. Colorado had serious financial issues during last year, they still do to an extent. But they traded Liles and are close to $20M below the cap floor, let alone max.

  18. Guys, the real decision is how are you going to feel when Brad Richards signs an 8-year $50-million-plus contract with the Rangers. The Drury buyout all but ensures he comes here. With $3.3 million extra cap space, they have about $19 million to spend before factoring in the 10 percent overage they’re allowed under the CBA(which adds another $6 million and change to the limit). That’s also before you factor in the possibility they might find something to do with Redden’s contract. The closest team that would have space to fit Richards is Toronto, where Richards would eat up about a third of the $18 million they have available. Philly and LA can’t come close to that. I’d say Richards-to-New York is a forgone conclusion.

    nyr13 – if you replaced Christensen and Valentenko with Krieder and a first rounder, they’d probably do it. But like that? No way. Not even close, since the team already said they’re not interested in dealing him.

  19. TheMessiah94 on

    Colorado is well below the cap floor. They also only have 1defenseman signed beyond this year. Send them Girardi, Valentenko, Anisimov, Christensen, and a #1 pick for Stastny & Ryan O’Reilly. Hell, send them Redden too to help them reach the cap floor.

  20. i understood you, but disagree.

    i think the av’s goal is to get out of stastny’s contract and pick up some young talent. using that to rangers advantage, no reason to trade dubi, stepan, erixon, krieder or McD. the av’s have a ton centers and are weak on D.

    look at most trades the past 3 years. idk about you but i have said many times that the talent and skill on one side of a trade is way higher than what went back the other way. why? i depends on leverage and who has it. in this situation i think the rangers have the leverage because of this trade isn’t made they go get richards

  21. I don’t want to repeat myself since I’ve, pretty much, been saying exactly what Carp says- I believe he will make the team better. And he will help our young guys’ development. But he will not bring us the SC, at least not yet. That’s why I don’t think the contract he is about to get will be worth it.

    So, agree with Carp. Except this- the common notion that previous concussion increases risk for future concussions is now debatable. In fact plenty of evidence-based studies ( mostly from Boston) now suggest that if the person *fully* recovers from prior concussion, his risk remains similar to everyone else. But if the recovery isn’t complete, the risk is higher, much higher. And it does become cumulative.

  22. The big question is how long will Brad Richards be the player he is right now? If he can give us 3 seasons of averaging 80+ points and then steadily decline at 10 points per season, i’ll take that.

    Let’s suppose he signs 7.5 mil for 7 years. If he gives us 85, 80, 75, 65, 55, 45, 35 then I have no problem with giving him that kind of contract since the immediate impact is more important that the decline he has 5-7 years from now…

  23. Carp: Best line = _”Richards fills all of those holes.”_

    __________________

    Seriously though….I am also Waffling. A lot. I think I am closest to saying NO to Brad Richards. He won’t make us win THIS YEA and as NYR said yesterday, I would rather tie up Stamkos for 15 years.than Richards for 7 years. Also, Concussions freak me out. Not a good sign. Mostly I just know that the Contract is going to be the stuff of legends. Maybe more like, the stuff of horror films. So it’s really a balancing test of whether we want to spend that much for this guy and his injury prone head. The answer is probably, NO.

  24. I KNEW this day would come, I just thought it would come sooner. Richards is lucky that he is the ONLY stud in the UFA class. THAT is why he will get the crazy money. I equate the Richards signing closer to Gomez/Drury than Gaborik. I am not saying he is gonna be a bust like Gomez/Drury. I am saying he isn’t a player of the Gaborik caliber. He is not a superstar.

    But, the timing is right. He is gonna cash in. And Sather is gonna cut the check.

    I just don’t think it is a great signing anymore.

  25. How many concussions has Richards sustained in his career? If it is just the one this year, then I have no concerns at all. If it’s his 4th or 5th….

  26. ilb, what are you, a doctor? ;)

    Good morning, Sally!

    Sorry to say I will probably not be around the computer if/when the Drury buyout becomes official. So talk amongst yourselves. As usual.

  27. cw, obviously I agree with you. It’s a good signing that has the potential to be great, and the potential to completely blow up in their faces eventually. And it was inevitable, as you’ve been saying for a long time.

  28. CW – Richards does have all the potential. I think (and hopefully I am wrong) that a lot of us are just sick of big contracts being given to guys that never live up to them. It is because Richards will be a Ranger that the he will not live up, right?

  29. Well written, Carp. I guess Richards isn’t top 20, but he’s gotta be a top 20 center, right? I haven’t seen enough of him play to know exactly where he would rank in either category, but there’s probably only half of the teams at most that have a better number one center.

    Everyone needs to get past Stamkos. It’s not gonna happen, especially because if we submit an offer sheet, Tampa can wait seven days to make a decision, and Sather cannot stand to be left with nothing after Tampa would likely sign him.

    phil – I would actually love eight years and $50 million. That’s much more manageable than the contract Sather gave to Gomez. I would prefer something like Drury’s contract but cheaper, five years/$30 million.

    Cheers to Drury for doing the right thing. And someone may even sign him to a minimum contract with bonuses to see if his Clutchmobile still rides.

    Jagr to the Pens, Richards to the Rangers, Talbot to the Leafs. These things are true, according to iBob.

  30. Gift of GAB-orik on

    I said it previously, Richards has averaged about 70 points per season… while that makes him a top scorer on the Rangers, that’s far from elite.

    And i’ll listen to the argument that he wasn’t playing with a Gaborik type player… but only to a degree.

    Cross Check mentioned that Gomez and Drury weren’t scorers. Gomez and Drury have both broken 30 goals in a season, granted Gomez only did it once… but wasn’t Gomez the fast skating playmaker we needed?
    I’m not saying Gomez is a legit 1st line center… i’m just using this to illustrate how I don’t think Richards is the answer at the kind of money he’ll want/get.

    Drury and Gomez certainly weren’t. Richards doesn’t have a lot of ‘wiggle’ room before he lands on that list too. The expectations will be very high. Can he deliver? That’s the 7 or 8 million dollar question.

  31. ORR- I am sure both of those teams are now interested in Richards to help drive the price or years up on the Contract we give him!

  32. Gift of GAB-orik on

    Jagr to the Pens… though it’s a nice story that he came full circle… i would have rather him go to the West! Now we’re gonna get burned by him 6 times this year. Though if i am lucky enough to catch NYR/Pens at MSG… I’ll proudly take my Rangers Jagr jersey out of the closet and throw it on one last time!

  33. yes, it will take alot to get a stastny or spezza. this is just money for richards. i wouldnt wanna give up artie, or any prospects especially now that we lost werek and grachev. stupid for sather to overpay richards, but its not that bad since we have gotten out of 2 of teh 3 bad contracts, and redden will be back in hartford. if dolan doesnt care why should we? its his money. now, if richards gets concussed again and is forced to retire, will he still be on the cap? if not, i wouldnt worry about this as much either.

  34. Gift of GAB-orik on

    There is still a possibility Redden won’t report, the Rangers will void his contract, and Redden can attempt to get back into the NHL.

  35. Carp – It’s gonna happen. Just set up an autopost for around 1:00 p.m.

    How come nobody knew before today that Drury didn’t have to go through waivers due to his NMC?

    This is an interesting thought, but players probably don’t think about it too much when they see all the money: “if i’m a UFA, i think twice about signing for the rangers based on a) the way sather treated redden and drury and b) the fact that they blow” – Ryan Lambert/@twolinepass

  36. Gift of GAB-orik on

    Spider,

    I forget who, but someone mentioned he didn’t have to be put on waivers because of his NMC.

    If PHI sent Stamkos an offer sheet and Slats didn’t…. i would lose my mind.

  37. The idea that the Rangers need someone to play with Gaborik is ridiculous. The Rangers need someone who can put up 75+ points and Richards has proven he can do that.

    Also you can definitely make the argument Richards is an elite player. Finished in the top 10 in points the past two seasons and unlike the players above him, he didnt have a player of equal skill on his team…

  38. Leetchhalloffame on

    Happy days are here again
    Chris Dreary won’t be here again
    Let us sing a song of cheer again
    Chris Dreary’s end is near

  39. Correct, Spider. While you’re there, take a look at 11.8.a. It explains why Carter and Richards do not have their NTC/NMC anymore.

  40. Doodie Machetto on

    “How come nobody knew before today that Drury didn’t have to go through waivers due to his NMC?”

    I knew that. I thought everyone did. That’s why I didn’t understand what the big deal was a few days ago when he wasn’t on waivers.

    What’s news to me is that he isn’t going to use his knee injury to block the buyout.

  41. Doodie- that simply means he still feels he can play and is hoping to get another contract.

  42. I’m sorry you go after Stamkos full throttle – this kid is top 5 in the game and he is still just a kid. Make it so Tampa CANNOT match and give up the picks…No to Richards – this team is building for the long run not just a quick fix and even though he is a Very Good player he is not Stamkos and never will be. Stamkos’ ceiling is huge!

  43. I guess I could put it like this:

    Rangers sign Richards: What Emotion Are you Feeling?

    Rangers sign Stamkos: What Emotion are you Feeling NOW?

  44. Doodie Machetto on

    ilb, yes, but it was being reported that he didn’t think he could.

    NYR, I said it a month ago when the Drury buyout scenario was really being explored: Drury will be an Islander. He is going to replace Doug Weight.

  45. Gift of GAB-orik on

    Tampa doesn’t have to give up picks if they match. Stamkos’ rights are their property. Tampa gets picks if Stamkos signs with another team off an offer sheet.

  46. Stamkos is not a real possibility though. It would be fantastic but its not happening. Even if they did give him an offer sheet, it will be matched.

  47. I wanna say cheers to Captain Drury !! His case was a rare case where his heart, work ethic, drive, desire, and commitment to this team was NEVER in question. In his case it really was “just business”.

    Im going on record in the Pro-Richards camp. He addresses TWO holes on our team, and holes that arent going to be filled in the near future. MDZ is possibly the future PPQB and Stepan is possibly the future #1 Center but like i said that could be years away (if ever).

    Plus, i dont think this is your typical Sather UFA signing. So i dont think we can fairly compare it to any of his prior UFA failures. In the past Sather has approached Free Agent signings like “throwing darts at a dartboard”.

    In BRs case this is a calculated decision, where he actually has the ability to fill the holes hes being brought in to fill, and he has a great relationship with our coach and a handful of players

  48. Gab- if your comment was directed at me thats what I meant…us give up the picks…he is worth every one of them!

  49. Yup! I just makes the most sense for him to land there. Unless, Buffalo wants to reunite him with Kotalgeek…

  50. But I want Stamkos to be a Ranger. Waaaaahhhhhhhhhh.

    Yea it’s just a pipe dream. But it’s a great pipe dream, isn’t it?

  51. Doodie Machetto on

    “Stamkos is not a real possibility though. It would be fantastic but its not happening. Even if they did give him an offer sheet, it will be matched.”

    Actually, if someone gives him a max contract for 12 years or so, I really think Tampa won’t be able to match. I just think none of the NHL GMs have the balls to do it.

  52. Gift of GAB-orik on

    damn right he is!

    Tampa could in theory match an offer given, though there is reported financial issues, even though the owner has given a green light to do what it takes to sign Stamkos.

    One reported theory is that Stamkos doesn’t want to continue his career in Tampa.

  53. Gift of GAB-orik on

    I could see Snow doing it for the Isles.

    It’s no secret he’s thrown big deals at players to try and lure them to the Island.

    How many players in the last 2 years took less money for other teams instead of playing for the Islanders?

  54. Doodie Machetto on

    Kypreos is saying that there might be some problems with Nashville’s QOs. Sounds like Chicago from a couple of years ago.

  55. If someone gives Stamkos a max contract for 12 years, Tampa will definitely match. They might have to get rid of Lecavalier to do so, but there is no way they let him leave.

  56. i love the idea (who wouldn’t) of stamkos on rangers, but oleo is right, tampa would match it. but you have to force them to match…dont let them off the hook easy. no one will miss all those picks anyway.

    BUT, when tampa does match the offer you can be sure that lacavelier will be traded right asap

    the negative for the ranger, it was mentioned already, it leaves richards out there while you are pursuing stamkos

  57. I think if the Rangers can be creative – I know it’s Sather – they can try and make it difficult for Tampa to match. Neil Smith almost pulled it off with Sakic – I am not big on long term deals – 5 years is more than enough but for this kid you go for it! He is worth 10 years – when that contract is up he will be Brad Richards’ age right now. Think aboot it!

  58. Doodie Machetto on

    They can’t get rid of Vinny. Nobody wants his even more inflated contract. Not to mention Vinny has a NTC and is a big part of the Tampa community.

  59. also, tampa right now has about $22 million under the cap. they still have no goalie signed and only 8 forwards signed. if you hit them with a $9 cap hit they will match but be screwed for filling out the rest of their roster

  60. “the negative for the ranger, it was mentioned already, it leaves richards out there while you are pursuing stamko”

    See, I don’t think that’s neccessarily a negative…

  61. if vinny has NMC why so much talk last year of him going to mtl? or anywhere?

    if vinny stays then alot of others will be gone

    TB has hedman as RFA next season

  62. I don’t think so. Well, at least Dreary won’t be around. Plus, Erixon will step in on D. Everyone is a year older. It’s going to be a different team, regardless….

  63. Doodie Machetto on

    nyr13, that’s not to mention that TB is not a “cap” team. They are a “budget” team, as in, they have an internal budget to stay under.

    Forget the cap, they can only spend so many real dollars. Vinny gets 10 million a year for the next half of a decade. Ohlund and Malone are both getting 5.5 million this year in real dollars. Same for St. Louis (although that’s a bargain for him). At some point, the real dollars add up and they can’t afford to pay out like this without taking huge financial losses.

    And while some teams need to get to the cap floor, Vinny has a NMC, and would likely veto a trade to a cap floor team, since they all are terrible.

    BTW, cap floor teams wouldn’t want Vinny’s contract because it pays him 2.3 million more than his cap hit. They don’t have the money to pay him 10 million a year for the next 5 years.

  64. Doodie Machetto on

    “if vinny has NMC why so much talk last year of him going to mtl? or anywhere?”

    Actually, the only place there has been talk of is Montreal. And it’s because all of that talk originates in the Montreal media, because they want their Vinny to come home. And for all that talk, what did they get? Scott Gomez.

    He ain’t going anywhere.

    There has been trade talk around Spezza for like 3 years, sending him to just about any NHL team you can think of, and has he gone anywhere? Rumors are just wishful thinking. In fact, most NHL trades are the ones that you don’t really see coming until they happen.

  65. Doodie Machetto on

    Lecavalier is so invested in the Tampa Bay community. He donated like $3 million to a new All Children’s Hospital that is going to be named after him. He’s not going anywhere.

  66. I did not know that Doodie. I just assumed he would waive it to go somewhere not so warm and play. Montreal would make sense. A lot of sense.

  67. I’ve said it and posted it from the first time rumors were flying about Richards, NO!!! NO!!!! NO!!! DO NOT DO IT!!!! This will set the rangers back in the long run, not a good move and since it isn’t a good move that means Sather will do it. All this means is more years of mediocrity under Dolan and Sather, it just keeps on going, the insanity.

  68. I don’t have time to read the comments above but what about
    throwing an offer sheet at Stamkos? give up the draftpicks…
    You’d be getting a really young guy who is a top talent and how much more will he cost than a Richards?

  69. UGH. I am waffling over BR, too. I suppose it is going to be a done deal on Friday, however.

    ilb? anyone? I have not been following RR real regular (shame on me) but I have not seen any posts from fran. Has anyone else seen him on here? I hope he is okay.

  70. Doodie Machetto on

    “You’d be getting a really young guy who is a top talent and how much more will he cost than a Richards?”

    About 4 million a year more for an extra 3 or 4 years on a successful offer sheet. Not to mention the four firsts. But, I think it’s totally worth it.

  71. Gift of GAB-orik on

    @ChrisBottaNHL
    Chris Botta Betting Rangers’ max bid for Brad Richards will be 6 years, $42 million. We’ll see how much he wants to play for Tortorella

  72. He’d cost more than Richards but you’d be getting the entire upside of his career.

  73. There HAS to be concern that Richards will be Gomez or Drury or Holik or whomever all over again. Here are his career stats:

    http://tsn.ca/nhl/teams/players/bio/?id=1816

    Under a point per game average in regular season, never scored more than 28 goals in a season, never broke 70 assists. He does a little better in the playoffs but his SC and Conn Smythe were won 7 years ago. Sounds like Drury or Gomez to me.

    Again we are in this position constantly overpaying “elite” UFA offensive players because we have been unable to draft and develop them. In 2003 half the league got a franchise player of that type in the draft. We all know what we got.

    That said I fully expect Richards’ Ranger contract to be 6 years $48M. I hope he helps break the cycle of mediocrity.

  74. Izzy Mandlebaum on

    So long, Drury. Good riddance.

    Gaborik will be the next “why did they?” Contract buyout.

    Hello Richards- I give it two years before we are all wishing Richards would retire. And five before he gets bought out.

    SSDD. It’s the Sather Way. Lion for a day. Bad contract for 7 years.

  75. TheREALMikeyNJ on

    Hello Carp & All fellow boneheads!!!

    Havent been around for the last few months.

    My father got diagnosed with Stage 4 cancer, and have been putting up the good fight with him and my family. Rough times, but family is amazing in times like this.

    So I NEED some Rangers Rants craziness to take my mind off things, and back I am!!

    Anyway, My two cents on the whole Richards scenario:

    First off so far Sather has gotten rid of Rosival, Gomez, now Drury, and hopefully Redden either by demotion or by him voiding his contract to try and play for another team.

    So by any stretch of the imagination, and even though I hate Sather prob more than anyone, we are ALBATROSS FREE for the first time in I cant even rememebr how many years.

    The only long term contract we have right now are Gabby, Hank, Girardi & Staal, which are all pretty reasonable. and arent ludicrous deals.

    So by giving Richards the 6.5-7.5 he’s looking for with 5-7 years, to me, is fine.

    He IS a true #1 Center, will fill multiple holes (no pun intended) and still give us cap room to Resign our RFA, and other additions

    Are we a cup contender with just adding him, no. But he is a piece, and a very large piece to the puzzle.

    Plus, and this is way different than under the Renney regime, Torts has alot of pull and say with Sather. And i dont think he’s pushing for a player that Sather just wants to throw money at, but a player that can help and help now

    So I’m fine iwth goign after Richards, and even if it costs a little more in term and dollars so be it. we have the space, we’ll only have two players on our team making that kind of money, and were nto giving away any of our youthful Core.

    Stamkos – Different story. We would all LOVE to have him, screw the draft picks and lock him up long term. But the timing is bad, and we cant jsut sit an wait around for tampa to counter while richards is a UFA.

    Anyways, good to be back

    Now go get your Shine Box!!!!

  76. Personally I’d rather get an offensive defenseman worth a damn and ride Derek Stepan 21 minutes a night with our top wingers but that’s just me.

  77. As a guy who has been pro-signing Richards from the beginning, I must say…how many years can we just stand pat and hope a top flight player will come here when available? That didn’t work out so well for the LeBron suitors, did it?

    We have a top 5 goaltender still in his prime, a young nucleus that had a great playoff learning experience, and a coach that has his players buying into his system. I can stomach a 6-7 year deal if it means the first 3-4 make the Rangers a slam dunk playoff team with a chance to make noise.

    Stamkos isn’t walking through that door. Sign Richards, sign Fedotenko, fill out the roster with a rookie or two, and let’s get cracking on a great 2011-2012 season!

    Signed,
    Oddly Optimistic

  78. Wicky (Leeloo Dallas mul-ti-pass) on

    Morning ILB and all!!

    Love the fact jagr refused to fit on drury’s line (according to larry)! What a freaking “me” putz!

    Cole would be a good fit who ever said that!

  79. Mikey – as a 4 time cancer survivor my thoughts and prayers are with you and yours!

  80. Well said Mikey!

    And best of luck to your dad!

    He also made a good point about Torts’ input. Renney seemed to never have much, and Sather would just close his eyes and throw bags of money on shiny new toys.

    If Torts endorses it, that just makes me even more for it.

  81. Mikey,
    best of luck to you and your family.

    I don’t think adding Richards makes us a cup contender. I think it gets us to the second maybe the third round of the playoffs.

  82. Doodie Machetto on

    wicky, that’s LB continuing his anti-Jagr tirade. Jagr didn’t refuse carcillo.

  83. Noah…..Richards is no Lebron….not to demean your point because it’s a REALLY good one. Helps my waffling. Just don’t give up the farm. Ever. Please.

    I am fine with Richards at 6 years. I just wish there was some team option or something. I don’t want to give him a NTC or NMC or make him C or anything crazy. Just get him in here to fit in and help us win. NOW.

  84. DJK

    im sorry but there is no way you can compare Gomez or Drury to Richards. Just look at their career averages.

    Gomez: 16g 48a – 64p
    Drury: 23g 33a – 56p
    Richards: 23g 53a 76p

  85. Leetchhalloffame on

    Dreary is a great start to the house cleaning. Now how about EC, Prosballs, Wolski, just to name a few.

  86. Gift of GAB-orik on

    it’s easy to compare those 3,

    The Rangers have paid/will pay them all $7mil a season!

  87. Rhode Island Ranger on

    Richards’ Conn Smythe win with Tampa deserves more emphasis. It speaks volumes not only about his ability and physical endurance, but also about his character. Softies don’t win the CS.

    The intangible, but vital, competitive qualities that Richards possesses and his very positive relationship with Torts may also provide a healthy buffer between linemate Gaborik and the demanding coach. Richards will make the first line more dependable in the defensive zone and free up Gaborik to be more dangerous on offense.

    He can encourage and push Gabby in ways that Torts can’t. As the trusted (English-language!!!) spokesman for the new first line, Richards will improve the coach/player dynamic immediately. This effect will be hard to quantify, but HBO may capture it!

    If Richards can be signed for 5 or 6 years, it should be done. Even a longer deal may be worth it to maximize the team’s potential during LQ’s prime.

  88. Cole? Ugh! No way!

    Jagr refused to play with Dreary? Please! He’s not that kind of player. The guy played with Isbister, for crying out loud, so how anyone believe Brooks. Back to the bus stop, he goes!

  89. Manny, I actually wasn’t comparing Richards to LeBron. I was comparing Stamkos or some other future RFA of his caliber to LeBron. And rather than not make a deal with the hopes of bringing in a super-duper-star, I’d rather make a deal with a guy who wants to come here and fits two glaring needs for this team.

    Does Richards make the Rangers a top 3 seed? Probably not. But last I checked, you don’t need to be a top 3 seed to win the Cup come springtime.

  90. Sioux-per-man on

    Richards is the Right Fit – Right NOW!!!
    He is a Stanley Cup Champion playing a Tort’s System.
    He is a legit #1 Center.
    He can quarterback the power play.
    He makes all the players around him better.
    He will make Gaborik better.
    He will make the Power Play better.
    He will be a RANGER!!!

    Boys it is going to be a GREAT year. We have a very young promissing Defense, one of the best Goaltenders in the game. Captain Callahan. A Sniper in Gaborik. AND a #1 Center in Richards.

    Richards alone make our Power Play better. ( I know it doesn’t take much) But this team is a REAL contender with a Power Play that can score goals.

  91. Richards puts them into win now mode for the next 3-4 seasons. It also allows guys like Stepan and Anisimov to get minutes against easier competition since Torts is a big power on power matchup guy.

    It’s a bit of a different story though between the presumed Richards era and Drury/Gomez era. Richards is coming to a younger team with players on the rise and a stronger homegrown core intact. Drury and Gomez were brought into a team that was heavy with veterans and had a rather makeshift defense. I’m not saying that Richards guarantees them different results, but after Drury and Gomez’s first year, they dismantled a lot of key components but went halfway with choosing whether to try to remain a playoff team or try to rebuild. They still haven’t, nor do I think they ever will go through a whole rebuild like the Pens, Caps, Hawks or Bolts have done since the lockout, but this is a certainly a different team than 2007.

  92. If Richards will TRULY make Gaborik better, signing him could be like signing 2 players…not 1.

    Right on, Noah.

  93. Gift of GAB-orik on

    I’m a simple man. I just want results. If Richards gives us results, and elevates the team, and makes the offense/PP more dangerous, i’ll love it, and him.

    I’m skeptical… but easily converted!

  94. So what am I going to do with my Callahan heritage jersey that only has the “A” on it?

  95. Gift of GAB-orik on

    haha Prospect fight at the scrimmage!

    that takes fighting for a roster spot a bit too literal.

  96. Better question…what should I do with my Drury Rangers shirt that I bought in 2007 and quickly relegated to back of the closet by 2009?

    It now sits alongside my home blue Tiki Barber jersey.

  97. CT – Remove the “A” and insert a “C” ! It’s like getting a whole new Jersey!

  98. “Anybody know who this Donny Maloney kid is, in prospects camp? Any relation to the Maloney’s, or is it actually Don Maloney, pretending to be a kid?”

    Orr – That is, in fact, Maloney’s kid. His chance of getting a contract though are probably less than Lyon Messier’s were several years back(but better than Valeri Kamensky’s son)

    On Jagr – Drury was never the type of player that would fit with Jagr. Gomez was the guy who was supposed to be the new Nylander: fast, supposedly good vision, great assist guy. Only he turned out to be a moneygrubbing scumbag who doesn’t give two shakes of Carcillo’s money maker about hockey. Worst. Signing. Ever.

    On Richards – you better believe he makes the Rangers a contender. He gives the Rangers two solid lines, a vastly improved PP and a hope at getting out of the first round. Once you’re out of the first, anything can happen.

  99. Gift of GAB-orik on

    Ok… i’m going to promote this discussion.

    We’re assuming it’s a foregone conclusion that Cally gets the ‘C’

    So if that’s the case, Staal has one ‘A’…. who gets the other?

    Dubinsky? Gaborik? (would love to see Prust get it)

  100. Gomez was the more productive player in the two years they both played together.

  101. You can remove it using a seam ripper. Just get those threads out. Then you will have a really cool spot under the “A” with no wear. Then you put the “C” over that spot and everybody knows you’re a true fan.

  102. I would love for a Cally (C), Staal (A) and Dubinsky (A) leadership trinity. Those guys all pretty much came up together and it would be pretty cool to see them be asked to lead this new incarnation of the Rangers into the next decade.

    Another idea for an “A”…Henrik!

  103. Gift of GAB-orik on

    CT,

    if you bring it to a tailor, or even a dry cleaner, they can most likely remove it. They can cut the stitching, and will most likely have to heat it, as it was probably glued down before sewn.

    Dry cleaner is probably the best bet, will have chemicals to remove glue residue.

  104. Doodie Machetto on

    “Another idea for an “A”…Henrik!”

    Makes no sense. Can’t wear it on the ice, and he doesn’t need to be named an “alternate captain” in order to speak up in the locker room.

  105. Unless other moves are in the offering, say no to Richards, continue to develop, no sense in monopolizing those dollars to pick a few slots lower in the draft. Richards will be 34 or so by the time this team can conceivably compete with the elite (not accounting for further additions). Gaborik/Richards….not sure thats who I want to depend on come stretch/playoff run in the East.

  106. Good almost afternoon all! Mikey, my thoughts are with you and your dad.

    all this cap talk is making me thirsty. at this point I just want this to be over cause sitting on the fence is getting mighty uncomfortable.

    Hooray for Captain Cally!

  107. Gift of GAB-orik on

    You want to see what these prospects can really do? Get Hank and Biron between the pipes. Let’s see these kids score on goalies who are only marginal busts, instead of full on prospect busts!

  108. Gift of GAB-orik on

    I keed I keed.

    but seriously…. let’s see Thomas, Borque, and company score on Hank, or Biron. Then i’ll be impressed!

  109. Mike, all the best to you and your dad.

    Marji- good observation, I haven’t heard from Fran either. I will email him, but he usually doesn’t respond very fast either…

  110. Can you name a “star” player on the Bruins outside of the concussed Marc Savard (who didn’t play)? Not really. They had a unique team identity, a bunch of kids that came through their system, and aged veterans playing role positions and that’s how they got to the cup Finals. They played within themselves.

    Now I’m not saying the Rangers don’t need to improve, because they do, but I don’t think we really need to spend all of that money on Richards and I’d rather save it to fill in some spots. Let these kids continue to come up through the system and give them a shot at the big club. They know the team identity, they know how Torts wants to play already because they’ve been playing that way in the minors. If we waste all that money on Richards, we’re going to have our hands tied for a long time and I just don’t see the worth in that.

  111. Bergeron is one of the better two-way players in the league. Krejci, quietly. is one of the better set up man around. Don’t underestimate what they have.

  112. Doodie Machetto on

    “Can you name a “star” player on the Bruins outside of the concussed Marc Savard (who didn’t play)?”

    They have these guys Thomas and Chara. I guess they’re both bums.

  113. By the way…after the Playoff run that Bergenheim had….he is going to get [over]paid.

  114. The rangers have been down this road before, signing free agents for big money. Finally the rangers are developing there own home grown players. I do not want them signing another free agent for big bucks that can jeopardize signing there own home grown talent. if they sign Richards that is exactly what is going to happen.

  115. Thomas and Chara were definitely busts. That’s why Thomas didn’t play in the NHL until he was like 50 years old and why Mad Mike traded Chara.

  116. Manny, I really like the way Mardy Fish is playing this year. If he continues to serve the way he has so far, I’d give him an outside chance.

  117. tomg,

    They’ll be able to re-sign their homegrown players too.

    And as good as it is to see them bringing up their own players, there’s still quite a gap in skill between their guys and the likes of Crosby/Malkin/Toews/Kane.

  118. I would be SO happy to see Mardy Fish even make the finals. I really like that guy. You’re right that he’s playing great. I think his conditioning got better? Maybe getting married helped him out in that regard. Him raising a trophy would be a great sight.

    Djokovic is just sooooo good now that he can serve. I think unless Novak beats himself he cruises.

  119. in an ideal world richards would be great for 4 yrs btwn 25-28 mil. no chance his contract is less then 7 years. i just tink the cons outweigh the pros here and an 8 yr deal over 50 mil will be a disaster. we need more skill on the wing.

    agree with carp the day cally and dubi play on second pp unit is when we could be a serious contender.

    by the way some guy on nhl.com dave lozo predicting kaberle ends up in a ranger uniform along with richards.

    jage decision coming after 330 today because he is flying in and meeting his agent svoboda in new york.

    come on jagr come home. say new york even though we never gave you an offer.

    please go to the wings

  120. took off from work on friday to spend the frenzy on the blog. have plenty of days saved up.

  121. LOL! Why, Manny?

    Murray had a pretty hot girlfirend, and she dumped him because he was always playing video games! Ahaha! That’s my only problem with him.

    I can relate though. I’ve been dumped over NYR. But, NYR hockey is 10x more important than video games.

  122. A Not So Secret Laurel Admirer on

    Fish lost this match the minute he was born. I wouldve given him an outside chance to win 8 total games against Nadal. Online betting sites wouldnt allow people to bet moneyline on Nadal winning. :)

    Sad about Fed! Tsonga will get smoked by Djoko. Im rooting for Murray also, really want him to end the British drought.

    NBC coverage is a joke; they never allow you get a complete Wimby quarters match.

  123. A Not So Secret Laurel Admirer on

    Krejci – as per the words of Jaromir – is a very good player, probably best player on the team that I refuse to type. Bergeron as well.

  124. He got dumped over Video Games?!?

    I really just didn’t like his run in Wimbledon about 3 years ago when he was jumping up on the risers and screaming after every point.

  125. A Not So Secret Laurel Admirer on

    What annoys me about America is that most other countries will show every game of the IIHF World Hockey Championships, every Rafa, Fed, Murray, Djoko and all the good players matches in their entirety, and USA wont.

  126. LOL! That’s what I’ve heard, Manny. He had a “7 hour a day obsession with Modern Warfare 2″. Too funny!

    Yeah, I remember he used to be pretty “unsportsmanlike” when he started to get good.

  127. How many more D-man do we need anyway? The best case scenario-Sather signs 7th/veteran without spending too much.

  128. feds 178-1 in grand slam matches now after winning first 2 sets. i love federer a champion with class

  129. A Not So Secret Laurel Admirer on

    Whats up Gabby?! Hows the married life?! Murray got dumped for playing 7 hours of Call of Duty a day! So many athletesd play COD nowaways, even the great Kobe Bryant, and Chelsea’s Ashley Cole.

  130. The only way Richards is worth the risk if he comes here cheap…and we know damn well that’ll never happen. I can’t see inking a 34-year old with a history of concussions to a long term deal at a hefty price tag. while I think he’s a better player than Drury, he’s not, as Carp so astutely pointed out, a superstar, and you’re giving up one horrific contract to take on another. I’d pass.

  131. A Not So Secret Laurel Admirer on

    My bro’s been texting Fish jokes to me all day. Fish actually broke Nadal in the 1st set. Bro texted me that Rafael Nadal is not even playing this match; its his alter ego Donatello Nadal that allowed Fish to break him, LOL!

  132. Mister Delaware on

    Just saw that Chris Drury, a local guy, is going to be an unrestricted free agent. Remember that goal he scored against us with 7.7 remaining in the 2007 playoffs? Man, that was a back-breaker. Anyway, maybe we should give him a look. 5 years, $25MM should get it done, right?

  133. my mistake, I said Richards was 34. At 31, that changes things a bit. I still don’t want to see them give out another Drury contract, and it’s very likely that’s what it will take to get him here.

  134. Not only he just turned 31, Richards is .92 points per game career player. Gomez is .78 and Drury is .68. As long as it isn’t a stupid contract, I wouldn’t compare those 3.

  135. Doodie Machetto on

    It doesn’t matter what we think. Slats is going out and buying Richards, no matter what the cost.

  136. Mister Delaware on

    Gomez averaged the same .92 over the three seasons before we signed him.

  137. Gift of GAB-orik on

    Hey man! Married life is good, all is well.

    I play COD as well, my wife reads, it works out.

  138. Very true, Doodie….Something tells me it’ll be a painful contract. The good news- July 1st is one of the busiest day at work for me every year, so I won’t be suffering much…I hope.

  139. Doodie Machetto on

    If you want to cherry-pick, Richards averaged 1.04 over the past 3 seasons.

  140. Mr Delaware- Richards averaged above 1 point per game the last two seasons. Gomez, when he received his contract in NY was just above .8 career average…

  141. I can’t believe I am reading some of this. The same people who are saying we should spend the money and years on Richards are going to be the same people who are screaming about how awful that contract is in 3 years… if not sooner.

    Richards is a very good player. He is not a franchise cornerstone. Why pay him like he is one? 4 years at 24 mil would be my max. This is Chris Drury all over again. People assuming that Richards will show up and net 40 goals and 80 assists. He will get his 20-25 goals and get around 80 points total… if he stays healthy. I am not saying the Rangers don’t need him or can’t use him, but why over pay for something that will hurt you later?

    This is the mentality that gave Gomex, Drury, and Redden so much many with so many years. They were the best of what was available, and money and years were thrown at them to beat the competition. We are all universally in agreement that UFA choices over the years have been horrible, yet some of you are ready to get back on that ride again and expect it to be better than before.

    Heck, I would concede that throwing a boat load of money (18 mil) at him for 2 years of work wouldn’t really hurt this team very much in the long run, but those later years are the things that will kill this team. I know they are going to get Richards regardless. I know they are going to give him way too much money. I just hope they can get some contract that is not crazy in terms of years. Sign him for three years and throw a bunch of money at him. 5+ years is just more of the same.

  142. Doodie Machetto on

    “People assuming that Richards will show up and net 40 goals and 80 assists. ”

    I agree with your position, but I don’t think anyone expects those numbers. The guy has never scored 30 goals or had 70 assists. Why would that change now?

  143. July 1st is the first day when new resident physicians start their training….There where all med students day before. Senior residents were juniors until midnight. That’s why they say never get sick in July. I haven’t been off on Independence Day for 17 years, lol

  144. Gift of GAB-orik on

    Plain and simple…

    It’s always dangerous giving a player his ‘last’ contract.

    It almost always ends up benefitting only the player, as we can assume B.gettingRicherds will get his money, a NMC and a NTC. He’ll want to know he’s where he’s going to be, and if his skills drop of (as they almost always do) we are stuck big time.

    There are only so many times we can unload a bad contract.
    If the Sather cat has 9 lives, i shudder to think how many he has left.

  145. Most, if not all, were expecting Drury to continue to have career years after the one he had in Buffalo, instead of him performing to his career average like he did his first two years in NY. I am seeing a lot of people assuming that Richards can fix many of the Rangers problems. I think he can help, but one player can’t fix everything. However, when you get paid like that, the expectation is there.

  146. Well said, Gift. But we all know Sather is going for it. So our only hope is that his contract’s structure is buy out friendly at the end, and not for too many years. Does anyone know why Cam Hope is leaving? Carp?

  147. Gift of GAB-orik on

    agreed ilb.

    Sather has shown an unrelenting willingness to throw money at the Rangers problems, and throw caution to the wind. Everyone in hockey and even people outside of hockey know it.
    Free agents to be and agents especially know it.

    Sather falls in love with the resume, which admittedly for Richards isn’t a bad one, and throws logic and common sense out the window.

    Yes, Richards is a good player, Yes, he will help whatever team he plays for. But the unknowns and the intangibles make it scary to try and guess.

    And again, we all know it’s going to happen anyway.

    And i can only hope he has many productive years here… i don’t want him to fail, i just don’t want to add to the ever growing list of bad moves and ineptitude that the Ranger franchise has shown in making roster decisions.

    They are making great strides in the right direction as far as developing young players.

  148. Doodie Machetto on

    ILB, I feel for you. I managed to get off on July 5. It’s the first non-office-closure day off I am getting since the week I took off before I started this job.

  149. Honestly, my main positive about getting him is that Torts wouldn’t push for it if he didn’t know who he was getting.

  150. Richards is gonna get his money from Sather. The concerns are warranted, but in this case Torts is getting a known commodity. When have the NYR signed a guy that the coach has had before?

    The point is, if Torts is saying,”I know what we can get out of this guy. He will fit in. He will succeed in my system like he did in Tampa…etc.” then maybe we should be thrilled with the prospect of adding Richards.

    This team is buying into Tort’s system. What could be better for him than to get a guy who won a cup with him to be that leader in the locker room? What better mentor for the new Captain?

    Maybe it’s more than just the PPG that makes Richards a $8 mil man…

  151. A Not So Secret Laurel Admirer on

    Rafa must be working on different parts of his game, experimenting with new stuff because he already knows this is a W. I believe that if Nadal had wanted to sweep away Fish, he wouldve.

    Gilbert, Drysdale and Cahill mustve been given a script by NBC. Do they honestly think Fish has any chance of winning this match?

  152. Don’t feel bad for me, Doodie. That is the only long weekend I work. I am in charge of the place and I learned over the years that if I take off I’d be worried so much that I wouldn’t be able to relax anyway. So it is my choice.

  153. That was my “positive thinking” right there. Stand by for the other shoe to drop.

  154. A Not So Secret Laurel Admirer on

    Manny, Nadal could win with no sight, sound, arms, legs, knees, fingers, you get the idea :)

  155. no no, ilb! I am not even watching. Just talking about tennis. I am also waiting to see it all later.

  156. Doodie Machetto on

    Torts is pushing for Richards like Pearn pushed for Redden. We all know how the latter worked out.

  157. Doodie Machetto on

    No, I’m just saying a coach pushing for a player that he worked with several years earlier could have negative ramifications.

    Keenan pushed for Noonan and Matteau. We all know hwo that worked out (even if it meant losing Tony Amonte).

  158. I guess the point I’m making is…Perry Pearn is an idiot. Torts (and Keenan) are not.

    Have we signed Drury yet?

  159. Keenan pushed for Noonan and Matteau We all know hwo that worked out

    ————-

    sure…Noonan scored Stanley Cup winning goal and Matteau scored bunch of playoff overtime winners. What you point, Doodie? :)

  160. A Not So Secret Laurel Admirer on

    Who knows, maybe BRich with Gabby can give us legit 1st line scoring.

  161. Gift of GAB-orik on

    Torts is also the reason why we didn’t sell off the young guys for established players. Torts learned about the young kids in the system and knew he had something to look forward to.

    While he may have mind-freaked Avery and MDZ…. He’s done positive things for the franchise.

    And i still believe MDZ will rebound and be ok. Torts smacked VL around in Tampa, and got the most out of him. Didn’t torts strip VL of the ‘C’ at one point??

  162. The question is whether his numbers the past two seasons will translate to NY and how long he plays at this level for.

    That alone determines whether the Rangers should sign him. If the Rangers are certain the Brad Richards that has been in the top 10 in scoring will put up similar numbers as a Rangers for at least the next 3 seasons then the Rangers should sign him.

    I see no reason why, if healthy, he shouldnt get 75+ points this season and there is no question that a 75+ point center with leadership qualities is worth 7+ mil a year…

  163. Gift of GAB-orik on

    Now our favorite parent of the year candidate is having conversations with himself?

    David Klein- finding new lows.

  164. remember the fans that clamor for Richards will be whining in about 4 years that he has diminished in performance, is old, and overpaid.

    4 years max at 6 mill per. That is a fair contract. after 35 the odds of his performance diminishing is quite high.

    richards would be the rangers best or 2nd best offensive player if he signs with them. he is a top 40 player but he is not a elite datsyuk, cindy, type player not even close….

  165. OH MY GOD. Will this ever stop!? WHY!?

    __________

    @CCCP@ – I would recommend ordering in Pizza!

  166. Gift of GAB-orik on

    It’s obvious you have a man crush on Carp David. You are acting like a jilted ex. It’s rather comical that you just can’t leave it be, and take your opinions elsewhere. Instead, you come by here to get your daily fix of self created amusement to feed your ego and narcissism?

  167. I am being converted. I think I am fine with Richards at around 6 years or less and around $42M or less.

  168. czechthemout!!!! on

    4 years @ $32,000,000 or nothing for Richards! If they get him, I would equate his acquisition to that of the great Mark Messier. No, he is not Messier. No one is! But he is a legitimate # 1 center who is still in his prime just like Mess at age 31 when we got him. We have a very similar team in that we have some nice home grown talent and a Stanley Cup quality goalie on the roster. What we are still missing is that legitimate offensive threat from the Blueline like we had in Leetch. I predict that if we do sign Richards, we will than go on a bit of a trading binge to trade some of our promising kids for some certainty and a shot at the Cup. I also believe that the team is fully aware that with Richards being 31 and Lundquist being 30,the window to compete for a run at the cup is no more than three to four seasons. Therefore expect a lot of your favorite home grown kids to be traded in the very near future.

  169. A Not So Secret Laurel Admirer on

    If BRich helps us win in his first 3 years, it wont matter if his performance diminishes in the 4th year.

  170. But four years is a long time away! Four years could mean a lot for this franchise having a legit #1 center, PPQ and a leader! In four years guys like Kreider, Thomas, Stepan, Hagelin and so on will all be contributing pieces for this franchise! So what if B. Rich skill starts to diminish (IF), i bet he want be the only player Rangers will be counting on. And in four years, more than have of Richards contract will be paid out, so if he starts going south, we can always drury him! ;)

  171. This is the ONLY sport that is truely 365 days a year… Love this time of year…

    Carp, wasn’t there a Doc who just recently told the NHL that there is no proof that once concussed you become more prone to further and diminishing concussions? I’m pretty sure I just read this the other day? He said that once the brain has healed, there is no more of a chance of that person getting another concussion than someone who never had one. (?)

    I personally have been on the side of saying no to Richards and would rather the Rangers hold out a little while before dropping long term money. The organization is going to have to unload some of the prospects that they have in the system because they can’t ALL play at the NHL at the same time on the same team. Why not strike a deal for a stud goal-scorer somewhere down the road either this year or next and give that guy the money? I’m with you… I’d rather give it to a game-changer who has a chance every game of being the difference.

    That said, I wouldn’t be totally upset if Richards comes to Broadway… as long as it’s a workable contract that isn’t $8 per for over 6 years…

    We’ll see??

    @@

  172. my post was in response to stuarts “remember the fans that clamor for Richards will be whining in about 4 years that he has diminished in performance, is old, and overpaid.” post.

    i know 4 years contract will not bring Richards

  173. Richards will put them near the cap max. Even if they wanted to go on a 1994 trade deadline mortgaging the future trading spree they can’t really add that much.

  174. William, it wasn’t a Doc, it’s a group of very well respected specialists in the field from Boston. Read my post from 8:51 am.

  175. Also, trading youth for vets was more of a Neil Smith move than a Sather move. Sather’s moves for vets have typically come via free agency.

  176. Woohoo!!!! MZA is working with Boyle and Barb Underhill at the MSG Training Center today!!!!

  177. Again if Richards signs a 7 year deal at 7.5 mil a season in order for him to be “worth” the money he needs to produce points similar to this. 85, 80, 75, 65, 55, 45, 35.

    The idea that he needs to be just as good 7 years from now is flawed. As long as he plays at a high level for the first few years, then whatever contract he gets is fine by me.

    The problem with Lindros, Holik, Drury, Gomez, Redden etc. is that they never produced the kind of numbers they did on previous teams or they only did it for one season.

  178. the recent trades where other teams took albatross contracts off the hands of teams that way overpaid (see Campbell, etc) or Drury being bought out etc, just gives Sather even more ammunition to claim in his own mind that any mistake he makes will be correctable down the line

    so I fully expect him to throw zillions of bucks and longterm mucho years at B. Richards. in his mind, damn the consequences. worrry aboot that later

    yes, it will help the Rangers in the short term. but it will surely be problematic in the longterm, especially if injuries, or concussion type symptoms etc cause his performance to suffer like it did late last season in Dallas. after he got hurt, they fell out of a playoff spot.

  179. Doodie Machetto on

    oleo, Drury produced at his average clip for the first two years. Likewise for Gomez, and then he was traded.

    Holik played at just about his career average 2 out of the 3 years he was here (middle one was lower), it’s just that his contract was one of the most inflated in history.

  180. Lindros was a separate case. He was a big producer but his brains were scrambled eggs by the time he came to the Rangers.

  181. Doodie Machetto on

    Theo Fleury did well here until his demons took over. He was leading the league in scoring in 00-01 until he checked into rehab.

  182. Doodie Machetto on

    First year was no good though, although, one can only assume he was on the sauce then as well.

  183. I should also say that a new CBA might make a longterm jumbo Richards contract even more of a problem, but once again Sather will think of the breaks he was given in the previous CBA (the jagr contract etc) and he will just forge ahead full steam, ignoring the cons Carp listed above.

  184. yes, it will help the Rangers in the short term. but it will surely be problematic in the longterm, especially if injuries, or concussion type symptoms etc cause his performance to suffer like it did late last season in Dallas. after he got hurt, they fell out of a playoff spot

    ***

    That’s as much of an indictment on the rest of the players on Dallas as it is on Richards’ value to the team. Dallas wasn’t really supposed that good last year anyway.

    Or I like to think of Dallas’ downfall was when they traded for Langenbrunner.

  185. Just Frontload his contract! Give him the max you can under this year and spread the rest out.

  186. The Rangers got 1 year at average production from both Drury and Gomez and then a 2nd year of slightly below average numbers. However, their average production is 20 points behind the other players who received 7+ mil a year.

    Although they should have never been given that much money, the fact that they declined before their contract was halfway over is the biggest problem.

  187. MZA will no doubt benefit from Underhill…if there was one flaw in his his game, it was his balance and foot work…He has all the other tools to be a potentially _elite_ NHL player…

  188. you can’t frontload the contract too obviously. remember the Kovalchuk contract was rejected by the league several times for that very reason before they would approve it

  189. Doodie Machetto on

    oleo, Drury’s numbers dropped by 3 goals and 2 total points from year 1 to year 2. All totals were better than his 2001-2004. Seems like an average year to me.

    Gomez dropped 12 assists, but his 70 point performance in the first year was actually above his average performance. 58 points was much closer to his career average prior to signing his deal with the Rangers. In fact, prior to signing with the Rangers he was averaging 58.3 points per 82 games.

    The fact is, their contracts were just totally inflated, but they gave us two average years each. Gomez actually gave us an above average year one.

  190. I don’t know aboot _elite_ but he can be a very good player. Maybe I’m being too pessimistic, who knows.

    I want to see him stay away from the “rough stuff”. I’m not saying he should be a carcillogina, but to me, he was distracted by it, late in the season. He needs to stick to his game, which is, ultimately, his playmaking.

  191. I think Jagr will have more points. He’ll be playing with one of Crybaby, or Milkman, as well as play on the first PP unit, barring some unforeseen incident. He’s bound to rake in the points.

  192. Doodie Machetto on

    dlg, the years is what made the Kovy contract get rejected. Nobody was expecting him to play until he was 44 while collecting only 1 million per year over the last 5 years.

    They fixed it by lowering the number of years by a few and just making sure to bring the dollars back up a little bit on the last two years.

    Basically, so long as the contract doesn’t take Richards past 40, the league won’t reject it as long as it follows the guidelines as to how much the actual salary can drop between years. There are rules regarding the percentages a salary can drop from one year to the next and within 2 years.

  193. NYR_FAN

    completely agree. The one part of his game holding him back is his skating. He has plus plus vision, creativity and hands. He also is surprisingly strong on the boards, and plays with effort, determination and grit.

    If he can improve his skating, I see no reason why he can’t be a 50 point player next season. I mean he was on pace for 12 goals and 33 assists last season so its not like its asking so much.

  194. I agree, I think it got in MZA’s head that he had to play with more “jam” to stay in the lineup towards the end of the season, when that really wasn’t his game. I like his feistyness, but his playmaking/passing needs to be the story…

  195. I think Jagr is going to have a tougher time than what people are expecting. He wasn’t exactly lighting it up in the KHL and if he was having issues keeping up with the pace of the NHL 3 years ago I can’t imagine him being able to do much better now. That said, Crosby will open up a lot of room for him but I wouldn’t be surprised to see him get lesser minutes than what we were used to seeing.

  196. CT, I think he adapted the the surroundings. Most players were garbage, so he played like half garbage.

    I think he half assed it in his years there. I can’t blame him. How can the KHL motivate you?

  197. Gift of GAB-orik on

    Wisniewski, Carter…. Columbus trying to make themselves a decent team.

  198. Doodie Machetto on

    “He looked really good with the Isles/Habs”

    Except when it came to, you know, playing defense.

    As for Jagr, I think he would be a 2nd line/PP specialist in Pittsburgh. 16-18 minutes a night. 20-25 goals, 55-60 points.

  199. “HBO cameras to focus on Tortorella, Bryzgalov”

    oh boy, that will be a good one. if you thought Boudreau could drop some F bombs, just wait until Torts goes bonkers on camera after a bad game. it will be great TV, I swear. or actually Torts does.

  200. wicky(grating PIBG)© (Non visor wearing male, 26, holder of 5 LLPs!!) on

    You guys are absolutely DRUNK if you think dubi deserves an “A” over Prust!

  201. Actually Orr the BJs have pretty bad goaltending. Steve Mason flopped after his first year.

  202. THE PRUST.

    I love him Wicky but do you really think he will be around long enough to spot the “A” ? He gives it his all but I don’t know how much he leads or whatever. I think Dubi is the more clear candidate.

  203. LOL! The BJ’s! Oh, I didn’t realize Mason was overrated. I’ll be honest, their on my list of teams I avoid watching, but I was under the impression that he was good.

    Wick, I agree with you. I normally don’t care aboot the letters, but in my opinion, Prust is more of a leader than Dublowsky, all bias aside.

  204. Another great point. I seriously see The Prust getting injured or maybe not being able to put together tough-it-out year after tough-it-out year. He’s young, but if his production falls he won’t be valuable enough to keep him around.

    Depending on Dubinsky’s Contract terms we will know how long. If they are horrible we are never going to be able to trade him!

  205. MSG is showing Rangers game where they came back from 3-0 deficit and beat the current Stanley Cup Champions 5-3!

  206. $3m is a lot for a 40+ year old goalie…and they need all the space they can get…they should have waited for Vokoun to hit FA…

  207. NYR – MY THOUGHTS EXACTLY!

    Vokoun is better and Tampa needs money. Maybe they will give up on Stammer?

  208. Gift of GAB-orik on

    Taking a stroll down hockey history lane and came across these records. Some of them are just outstanding and not likely to ever be broken.

    Most Points in one game by a Player: 10 (6G & 4A)

    Darryl Sittler, Toronto Maple Leafs – Feb 7, 1976

    Most Goals in one game by a Player: 7

    Joe Malone, Quebec Bulldogs – Jan 31, 1920

    Fastest 3 Goals in one game by a Player: 21 sec

    Bill Mosienko, Chicago Blackhawks – Mar 23, 1952

    Most Goals scored in one game by a Team: 16

    Montreal Canadiens vs Quebec Bulldogs – 1920

    Most Points in one season by a Player: 215

    Wayne Gretzky, Edmonton Oilers – 1985-86

    Most Goals in one season by a Player: 92

    Wayne Gretzky, Edmonton Oilers – 1981-82

    Most Assists in one season by a Player: 163

    Wayne Gretzky, Edmonton Oilers – 1985-86

    Most Goals scored in one season by a Defenseman: 48

    Paul Coffey, Edmonton Oilers – 1985-86

    Most Goals scored by a Rookie in one season: 76

    Teemu Selanne, Winnipeg Jets – 1992-93

    Longest Consecutive Point Scoring Streak: 51 games

    Wayne Gretzky, Edmonton Oilers – 1983-84

    Most Goals scored in one season by a Team: 446

    Edmonton Oilers – 1983-84

    Most Wins in one season by a Team: 62

    Detroit Red Wings – 1995-96

    Most Points in one season by a Team: 132

    Montreal Canadiens – 1976-77

    Longest Undefeated streak in one season: 35 games Philadelphia Flyers – 1979-80

    Most Points by a Defenseman in one Season: 139

    Bobby Orr, Boston Bruins – 1970-71

    Most Penalty Minutes in one season by a Player: 472

    Dave Schultz, Philadelphia Flyers – 1974-75

    Most Points by a Rookie in one Season: 132

    Teemu Selanne, Winnipeg Jets – 1992-93

    Most consecutive wins by a Team: 17 games

    Pittsburgh Penguins – 1993

    GRETZKY=MONSTER
    GRETZKY ALSO = HOCKEY GOD

  209. Mister Delaware on

    “The idea that he needs to be just as good 7 years from now is flawed. As long as he plays at a high level for the first few years, then whatever contract he gets is fine by me.”

    Disagree. This works in baseball or a similar uncapped sport but he can’t take up 12-15% of the cap in 2015-16 posting 15 and 40 with two more decline years to go.

  210. CT: Not anymore…..not after Roloson signed for $3M. Vokoun will get $4.5M – $5M now.

  211. Gift of GAB-orik on

    $3mil for an over 40 goalie… YIKES!

    over 35 contract means the cap hit stays no matter if he stays on the nhl roster or goes to the minors right?

    Is there an extra over 40 provision that supplies social security reimbursement??

  212. Doodie Machetto on

    Busy hour:

    1) Jackets trade for Wisniewski’s rights
    2) Rolosson resigns
    3) Kariya retires
    4) Isles and Erhoff break off talks
    5) Drury bought out

  213. I am not going to let Drury leaving ruin my talking about getting Stamkos.

    GET STAMKOS.

    Good luck ORR.

  214. Doodie Machetto on

    Ha, the Isles are such a joke. Erhoff becomes the third defenseman in 2 years to openly spurn the Islanders’ large offers in favor of somewhere else.

  215. finally have a chance to get on here.
    read the Drury news.
    a needed conclusion
    and
    sad that it ended the way that it did (includes last 2 seasons)

    on the other hand
    is there some kind of betting pool going up among
    Boneheads
    are far as
    how much of a MAJOR rebound Drury will have
    when he signs with another team?
    maybe score 80 points this year
    hat trick against us
    including another clutch effort.
    just sayin’
    it wouldn’t be surprising

  216. actually thought that philly would have gone
    after vokoun rather than bryzkalov
    since he seems a little better (don’t know stats)
    and is used to eastern conference.

    whatever!
    not my problem

  217. Boom Boom Bathgate on

    Words are cheap, Mr. Drury. You gave us 10 cents on the dollar, for what we gave you. Bad riddance you creep.

  218. favorite part of this article is Carp’s high praise for Dubinsky. All the regular boneheads know that I am a big Dubi fan, and I always remember the article that Carp wrote when he was out for a drink with Mike Green and another Caps player and they remarked about dubi when asked by Carp what Ranger player impressed them. I think everyone of you is the best!

    love,
    the Mao

  219. Let’s not blame Drury for accepting Sather’s idiotic offer.

    Any of us would’ve done the same thing.

    That said, happy to see the buyout has finally been completed and the page can be turned.

  220. A Stamkos five year contract? Good. A Richards five year contract? Not so good.

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