Friday, May 30, 2008

Avangard Omsk Pursuing Jagr Hard

From Dubi at the Blueshirt Bulletin...

Avangard Omsk appears to be seriously pursuing Jaromir Jagr. "They are in full swing," Omsk GM Anatoly Bardin said of negotiations with the Ranger captain during a press conference yesterday. "We talked with him today at night. Jagr returns from vacation in New York to the Czech Republic in mid-June -- I will go to the Czech Republic to continue negotiations with Jaromir."

...I'd be happy with whatever happens. If Jagr decides to sign with the Rangers, great we'll have one of the best players in the league back for another season. If he decides to play in Russia, fine we can start the post Jagr era and sign a younger winger i.e. Rolston or Hossa.

Ryan Hollweg Has Face Transplant With Marc Staal

...check out this gaffe over at Man they are the worst.

...hopefully, Hollweg can start to play like Staal also.

Not Dead Yet

John Dellapina at the Daily News says there's still an outside chance of the "Winter Classic" being played at Yankee Stadium...

"With desperation setting in, the three parties who must work out the complex logistics associated with the event - the NHL, the Yankees and the Mayor's Office - plan to sit down next week for a Stadium hockey summit." feelings are that the anti-New York Bettman won't work hard to get this done.

Thursday, May 29, 2008

Blogs: More NHL Combine & Sam Weinman Genius

At Prospect Park, Jess Rubenstein gives his Top Ten All-Heart Prospects at the NHL Combine.

While Inferno at the Rangers Review tells us why Sam Weinman of the New York Journal is a genius.

Yankee Stadium Out, Wrigley Field In

The Chicago Sun-Times reports...

"The Blackhawks are expected to play the Detroit Red Wings at Wrigley Field in January in the NHL's Winter Classic, Comcast SportsNet reported Wednesday night, with an official announcement perhaps coming this week.

Hawks president John McDonough has been pushing for an outdoor game after the success of this season's Winter Classic on New Year's Day at Buffalo's Ralph Wilson Stadium. A league-record 71,217 fans saw the Pittsburgh Penguins beat the Sabres 2-1 in a shootout.

Yankee Stadium, one of the other front-runners to host the outdoor game next season, was deemed an unlikely site last week by NHL commissioner Gary Bettman."

...too bad, it would have been cool to see the Rangers play at The Stadium.

John Dellapina at the Blueshirts Blog had this reaction...

"If, however, it does turn out that the NHL does not play in the Stadium New Year's Day, this will rank as one of the great missed opportunities for a league that needs to seize any and all it can."

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Serious Jagr Contract Negotiations to Start Next Week

John Dellapina at the Blueshirt Blog reports...

As for Jagr, serious negotiations on a new deal probably won’t begin until next week. With agents J.P. Barry and Pat Brisson here in Pittsburgh tending to client Sidney Crosby and Rangers GM Glen Sather tied up with scouting players at the NHL draft combine, the sides figure to be tied up the rest of this week.

“Jags is still property of the New York Rangers until July 1 and he is interested in exploring staying in New York,” Brisson said. “Slats has stated similar interest. And we are going to try to do something together. But we haven’t exchanged proposals or anything like that.”

...didn't Larry Brooks at The Post report negotiations were supposed to start last week? I can't believe that Brooks would have reported anything erroneous.

Possible '08-'09 Rangers Line-up

Here's what Greg Caggiano at The Bleacher Report would like the Rangers line-up to look like next year...



...I actually like it. Rolston and Liles would bring instant success to the Rangers power play. While Orpik would bring toughness to the blueline which the Rangers have been lacking since Beukeboom retired.

...I'd also like to see Orr mixed in the line-up for certain games to add intimidation up front.

Rangers Looking at Jokinen

Eklund at Hockeybuzz reports...

"Enter Olli Jokinen. According to sources, Olli is the key target of the Sabres and the Flames, but don't count out the Rangers and even possibly...the Predators or the Penguins."

...with the Rangers having an abundance of centers, I can't imagine them being interested. Unless they decide to move Drury to the wing.

...Jokinen finished last season with 34 goals, 37 assists and a -19.

Rangers Must Pay Holik & Ortmeyer

TSN reports...

"Sources tell TSN that the New York Rangers will have to pay former Ranger and current Atlanta Thrashers forward Bobby Holik $3.5 million over a contract dispute in 2004-2005.

Because of the lockout that wiped out the 2004-2005 season, the Rangers argued that Holik needed to play to earn his signing bonus.

An arbitrator disagreed and made the ruling in favor of Holik and Jed Ortmeyer, who the Rangers will also have to pay an undisclosed amount.

The Rangers bought out the remaining two years on Holik's five-year, $45 million contract contract in 2005. The team pried him away via free agency from the New Jersey Devils prior to the 2002-03 season.

Holik was set to earn $6.726 million in 2005-06, following the 24 percent contract rollback mandated by the new collective bargaining agreement between the NHL and the players' association."

...looks like ticket prices are going up next year.

Fleury to Play in Calgary Baseball Game

The Canadian Press reports...

"A news release from the Calgary Vipers, a minor league professional baseball team, suggested Fleury, who has Stanley Cup rings and an Olympic gold medal from a career which included stints with the Calgary Flames, Colorado Avalanche, New York Rangers and Chicago Blackhawks, was going to attempt to make the team and live a boyhood dream.

The story drummed up memories of NBA superstar, Michael Jordan, who left the Chicago Bulls and signed a minor league baseball contract for a short-lived career with the Chicago White Sox.

But the story turned out only to be a very good publicity stunt.

Fleury will be throwing out an opening pitch and at some point could be getting a chance to play for a couple of innings."

...good to see Fleury is doing well. If he gets a couple of hits maybe the Mets would be interested in signing him. God knows they need a spark in that locker room.

Hollweg's Summer Plans

Rangers On Demand has this video...

Ryan Hollweg tells us what's on his agenda for this summer here.

...hopefully Hollweg doesn't find his way back.

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Stick to Hockey Mark

Mark Messier takes a beating from Greg Wyshynski at the Yahoo! Experts Blog for his stuttering during last night's Versus telecast of Game 2 of the Stanley Cup Finals...

...warning, if you haven't seen this it's tough to watch.

...just a heads-up, sometimes the video takes a while to load. Which is probably good for Messier...

Blogs: Mandatory Reading, Matteau & NHL Combine

Scotty Hockey gives us some mandatory reading on past Ranger Stanley Cup winnings teams.

NYRangerscast reminds Ranger fans what happened 14 years ago today.

Jess Rubenstein at Prospect Park talks about the up-coming NHL Scouting Combine. (I didn't know there was one).

You Asked For This Mr. Bettman

I guess I have to acknowledge the fact that there is a Stanley Cup Final going on right now. Everyone at NHL Headquarters, Versus and NBC were begging for a Red Wings vs. Penguins series. Well here you go. In a word, awful. The Penguins can't even score a single goal on Chris Osgood? Chris Osgood!!!! How did we lose to this team? Anyway, Mr. Bettman I hope you're enjoying the finals. Because besides the fans in Detroit (which should be stripped of the title of "Hockeytown" with all those empty seats during the playoffs) you're the only one.

Avery's Fabulous Vogue Internship

New York Post's Page Six, has this to say about Sean Avery's Vogue internship...

NEW York Ranger Sean Avery spent last week saturated in the world of couture. "I wanted to immerse myself in fashion," Avery told Women's Wear Daily. "I couldn't think of a better place to do it than Vogue." Avery - who has dated the likes of Elisha Cuthbert, Mary-Kate Olsen, Rachel Hunter and Charlotte Ronson - started his internship last Monday, and presented a FiFi Award (from the Fragrance Foundation) to Vera Wang the next night at the Park Avenue Armory. WWD previously reported he would attend the couture shows in Europe next month with Vogue editrix in chief Anna Wintour, Andre Leon Talley, Hamish Bowles and Sally Singer. There is also speculation Avery will appear like LeBron James on the cover of Vogue, or like Roger Federer on the cover of Men's Vogue. The special treatment won't be reflected in his paychecks, however. Vogue reps were firm in stating he'll be paid the same minimum-wage as the other interns. think the rest of the interns at Vogue are being treated the same way?

...I find it comical that he actually receives a paycheck. Although, I guess that's the only one he's getting right now since he's a free agent.

Rangers 07-08 Junior Prospect Season Review

Hockey's Future has analysis on the Rangers seven junior prospects. Hockey's Future says this is the lowest number of Rangers prospects to play junior hockey in recent memory...

...not sure if that's good news or bad news. Good news because our prospects are so good they're all playing in Hartford, bad news because, well, I guess that's self explanatory.

...the analysis includes top prospect Bob Sanguinetti.

Malone, Orpik and Stuart Value Up or Down?

Steve Zipay at Blue Notes wonders about a few soon-to-be free agents currently playing in the Stanley Cup Finals...

"Having seen unrestricted free agents Ryan Malone, Brooks Orpik and Brad Stuart in the post-season, has their value to the Rangers increased ---or fallen?

In the open market, Malone should easily double his $1.45m annual salary, as will Orpik ($1.075m); Is Stuart worth his $3.5M a season? (Update: One astute fan bet me lunch offline that Malone will collect $4 mil plus).

If the Rangers resign Rozsival and spend $3 million for Orpik, who should their other D pickup be? Hainsey? Mara? Commodore? Mezei? Meszaros ($984,000)? and see how Potter fares in camp?"

...while I like Orpik, not sure I'd spend $3 million on him. We could definately get Hainsey from Columbus for a lot cheaper. $3 million is a lot for a physical defenseman.

...Zipay brings up Corey Potter from the Wolfpack, but doesn't mention team Captain and MVP Hutchinson. I'd rather see Hutchinson get a chance than Potter.

...and no way should we pay Malone $4 million a year.

Monday, May 26, 2008

Bad News on the Avery Front

Here are two rumors on Sean Avery and the Rangers...

Larry Brooks at The New York Post says...

"No conversations between Glen Sather and Pat Morris, the agent for Sean Avery, since the end of the playoffs, Slap Shots has been told. In other words, Charles Wang, Garth Snow . . . have your cash ready on July 1."

...I don't even want to entertain that scenario.

Eklund at Hockey Buzz notes...

"The Rangers are apparently not interested in what Avery is least at this price. Word is that Avery would like to stay in NY, however, I find the Avery talk interesting in that when Avery arrived in NY last year, like it or not, he was a big reason that the Rangers turned it around and made a serious run."

...I know that Brooks and Eklund are probably the two least reliable sources in hockey, but I still don't like to here these things.

No to Campbell, Yes to Rozsival and Orpik

Larry Brooks at the New York Post says...

"The New Jersey Devils as well as the cap-challenged Flyers are expected to be in the Eastern Conference mix for Brian Campbell. But the Rangers are far more likely to re-up Michal Rozsival and go after Brooks Orpik and perhaps Mark Streit than they are to get in on the bidding for the San Jose defenseman who is believed seeking at least $7 per season."

...I'd have to agree with Brooks here. No way we should be overpaying for Campbell who looked terrible in the playoffs this year.

...if Sather can give Rozsival a contract that includes a shots-on-the-power-play incentive, I'm all in. And where do I sign to get Orpik on this team. Defense pairings next year...


...I know, Hutchinson and Pock? But I think the Rangers should give these two a chance next year. Both have offensive talent and have been successful on the power play. By not overpaying for a Campbell type offensive defensman this leaves us plenty of money to re-sign Avery and Jagr and possibly pick-up a scoring winger. Marian Hossa anyone?

Russian Super League to Steal Jagr & Cherepanov?

Larry Brooks at The New York Post says that the Russian Super League is willing to spend lots of money on NHL players for two reason, one to restore pride and upper-echelon quality in Russian professional hockey and the second is to hurt the NHL, which has refused to engage in any meaningful give-and-take with the Russian Federation regarding a transfer agreement. This may include stealing Jaromir Jagr and Alexei Cherepanov...

On Cherepanov...

"At the moment, the new league appears to be targeting veterans. But what will happen next year if a Russian team offers Alexei Cherepanov, say, $4M tax-free to remain home, while the New York Rangers are limited to offering their 2007 first-round draft choice an entry-level cap base NHL salary of $875,000, which automatically would become $65,000 if the winger were to play in the AHL?"

On Jagr...

"The New York Rangers will not be able to compete monetarily for Jagr with Omsk, or any other club in the Russian league. If it's about a financial guarantee, Jagr has played his last game as a Ranger and in the NHL. Assume Jagr will be able to make between $16-20M tax-free over two years in Russia. That's the equivalent of what, $30-35M before taxes, in New York? More?"

...the Russian Super League looks like they're starting a 21st Century Cold War with the NHL. much as I want Jagr back, if he decides the money is more important, hey have fun in Siberia. But if we lose Cherepanov because of this new initiative by the Russian Super League I'm not going to be very happy.

Blogs: Captain Perimeter & Jagr Hating

At the Ranger Pundit, Mike Savino posts a story about a bartender who shares the same affection for #68 aka Captain Perimeter.

The Dark Ranger writes that despite all the booing Jagr received in Pittsburgh during this year's playoffs, real Penguins fans still love him.

Friday, May 23, 2008

Vegas Baby Vegas

Greg Wyshynski at the Yahoo NHL Experts Blog catches Jaromir Jagr hanging in the pool at the MGM Grand in Vegas...

"Duke Phillips over at Original Six Hockey League revealed that Jagr was doing some off-season R&R at the MGM in Las Vegas recently. "Who needs the Stanley Cup playoffs when you can float around in a belly boat instead?" Indeed. Duke reports that Jagr took some photos with fans, goofing around with a mullet wig, and said he "apparently has zero interest in playing for the Oilers."

Yup, Jagr was in Vegas. The same Jagr who at one point owed more than $500,000 to an Internet gambling site. But no one said he was playing the tables. As far as we know, Jags floated in a pool for a while, hit the buffet, maybe caught that Cirque du Soleil Beatles thing. Good, clean, wholesome fun. For a multi-millionaire. In Las Vegas."

...first Avery's interning at Vogue now Jagr's chillin' in Vegas. Man our free agents have gone Hollywood on us.

Ranger Fans Most Wanted TV Series

MSG has put together a new television series based on Ranger fans "Most Wanted." It premieres tonight at 8pm with "Fans Most Wanted: Rangers Playoff Moments." For more on the television series click here, for a full series schedule click here.

Thursday, May 22, 2008

Avery Is Photocopying Expert at Vogue Internship

Witney over at Mollygood reports...

"New York Rangers hockey player Sean Avery walked the red carpet with Vera Wang (who didn’t speak to reporters), but nobody seemed to recognize him except for me. I called him over to talk about his new internship at Vogue, which he just started last week. He claims he’s done his share of photocopies and is not intimidated by Anna Wintour. I would like to see those two battle it out."

...I cannot believe I'm posting a report from How many days before the start of the regular season?

Wedding Bells for Girardi this Summer

Rangers On Demand has this video...

Dan Girardi tells us about a life changing event that he will go through this summer here.

...don't do it Danny. Don't you see all the fun your single teammate Avery is having?

Jagr Still Considering Options

František Bouc at The Prague Post has this on Jaromir Jagr...

East or West? Siberia or Manhattan?

A choice easy to make for most people has become a dilemma for the Czech hockey star Jaromír Jágr.

“I’ll have to consider my options and take some time to make the decision about my future,” Jágr said soon after being eliminated, along with his current team, the New York Rangers, from the Stanley Cup playoffs in early May.

Jágr is considering whether to stay with the Rangers or join the ice-hockey club Avangard Omsk in Russia’s Superliga. Jágr played in Omsk during the NHL lockout in 2004–05 and enjoyed the conditions and people he encountered in Siberia.

...thanks to Dubi at Blueshirt Bulletin for the link.

...nothing new in the article, but thought it was interesting to see a take on Jagr's situation from one of his home country's newspapers.

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Blogs: Disappointing Playoffs, Heart Warming Messier & Rangers/Red Wings Preview

At The Battle of New York, "Kovy274Hart" talks about how disappointing this year's NHL playoffs have been.

Scotty Hockey gives a heartwarming story about Messier here, and a Rangers vs. Detriot Stanley Cup Preview here. (You'll see when you click on the link).

...get over it Scotty we lost.

Jagr Offered $12 Million to Play in Russia

Dubi at the Blueshirt Bulletin reports...

"Glen Sather may have his work cut out for him if there is any truth to a rumor that Jaromir Jagr has been offered upwards of $12 million to play in Russia for Moscow Dynamo next season. Avangard Omsk, Jagr's former Russian club, have already hinted that they were considering offering him the franchise player cap of $7 million."

...I guess we'll find out how much Jagr enjoys playing in New York.

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Valiquette's Summer Plans

Rangers on Demand has this video...

Stephen Valiquette talks about his summer plans and his annual camp that will be held in Bridgeport here.

...I know everyone has been waiting with baited breath for this video.

Ryder & Rolston on Rangers Radar

Steve Zipay at Blue Notes reports...

"...the names of UFAs Michael Ryder and Brian Rolston have surfaced as proven 25-goal scorers on the wings to possibly replace Shanahan or Straka. I'd take Ryder. Change of scenery might serve him well.

Here's another name I'll toss into the mix: Ottawa LW/C Antoine Vermette, an RFA who might not be re-signed. He's 24, 6-1, 200, made $1.075 last season. Tremendous speed, quality PK."

...after two straight 30 goal 25+ assist seasons Ryder only recorded 14 goals and 17 assists last year. While Rolston put up his third straight 30+ goal season this year. I'm in for signing both over Shanahan and Straka.

...Zipay's pick Vermette recorded 24 goals and 29 assists with a +3 during the regular season. However, he recorded no points and was a -4 in the Senators first round embarrassment at the hands of the Pens.

Monday, May 19, 2008

Blogs: Don't Re-Sign Jagr, Power Play Woes & Kitchener Rangers

The Rangers Pundit says that re-signing Jagr guarantees the same kind of passive play that has been a hallmark of this team for the past three years.

Scotty Hockey goes over how to fix the power play for next season.

With the New York Rangers season over, Jess Rubenstein at The Prospect Park follows the OHL's Kitchener Rangers in the Memorial Cup Playoffs.

Video: Lundqvist vs. Team Canada

Rangers On Demand has this video...

Watch highlights of Henrik Lundqvist and Sweden taking on Canada in the World Championship tournament here.

...I'm sure nobody wants to watch Lundqvist taking it on the chin, but I figured some fans might be interested.

Rangers to Sign Kolzig?

At HockeyBuzz, Eklund is reporting...

"The Canadiens and The Rangers are two teams that I am gearing have the most interest in Kolzig. He would be a great fit in either place..."

...I have seen a lot of crazy rumors on HockeyBuzz but this is the worst. How in the world would Kolzig be a great fit for the Rangers? In the salary cap era there is no need to pay for an aging veteran back-up goalie. Especially when the Rangers can cheaply re-sign Valiquette who proved he can play at the NHL level last year. I can definitely see Kolzig making sense in Montreal, but on the Rangers c'mon.

Lundqvist Burned Out After Canadian Shelling

Dan Barnes at the Ottawa Citizen reports on why Henrik Lundqvist didn't play in the Bronze Medal Game of the Hockey World Championships...

"Liv was the surprise starter in the Swedish net for the world hockey championship bronze medal game at Le Colisée Pepsi. Henrik Lundqvist was shelled by Canada on Friday and complained of being burned out, so he wasn't an option for head coach Bengt-Ake Gustafsson."

...while I should have been happy that Lundqvist bowed out of the Bronze Medal game because it meant one less chance of him getting hurt. I wasn't a big fan of Lundqvist sort of quitting on his team with a medal on the line. Doubt he'd ever do that to the Rangers, but it was a bit disconcerning.

Ken Campbell at The Hockey News reports on Team Canada assistant coach Pat Burns telling his players to shoot high on Lundqvist...

Canadian assistant coach Pat Burns told his players to go high on Swedish goalie Henrik Lundqvist in the semifinal and the strategy worked as Canada chased the Vezina finalist after scoring four goals.

“I did a helluva job, too,” Burns joked. “I should know, I’m with the Devils. We played (Lundqvist’s New York Rangers) 14 times this year and beat them once.”

...Lundqvist better work on this weakness in his game during the off-season as the word is out.

Blue Notes: Tyutin Wins Gold, Available Defenseman

At Blue Notes, Steve Zipay has this...

" about defenseman Fedor Tyutin earning a gold medal against Canada in the World Championships? Good for him. Maybe the experience will help him progress even more next season. Easy to forget that he played all 82 games this season, finished 11th in the league in hits with 218 and will turn 25 in July...

On available d-men...

There's Wade Redden, Brian Campbell (let other teams overpay), Ron Hainsey, Brooks Orpik, Mike Commodore, John-Michael Liles, Mark Streit. The Panthers didn't lock up RFA Jay Bouwmeester when they had a chance, and you wonder if he's not itching to escape Florida now. Worth exploring. Let's see, Bouwmeester or Michal Rozsival? JB."

...congrats to Tyutin on winning the gold. I feel that Tyutin sometimes gets a bad rap for his short comings on the pp despite the fact that he has no business being there. He's a physical defenseman and that's it. I don't see Pittsburgh putting Brooks Orpik on their power play. Renney is the one who should be criticized, not Tyutin. Hopefully, Sather can bring in a power play point man in the off-season so Tyutin can go back to focusing on playing defense.

Sunday, May 18, 2008

How About Hutchinson?

When asked by a fan about Andrew Hutchinson being in the Rangers plan nest season, Stan Fischler at had this to say...

Good question, especially since Hutch won the Eddie Shore Award as the American League's best defenseman. He also was WolfPack captain, team MVP, had his first career hat trick and set team records for goals (18) and points (64) by a defenseman. He was tied for fifth in the AHL for plus-minus at plus-25. And let's not forget that Hutch won a Calder Cup with Milwaukee in 2004 and was a member of Carolina's Stanley Cup-winning team in 2006.

The trick is that Hutchinson becomes an Unrestricted Free Agent this Summer. Interestingly, the last Shore Award-winner, Sheldon Brookbank, was picked up by the Devils, also as a UFA.

"I'd like to play anywhere," says Hutchinson, "but I'm not making phone calls asking if someone wants me."

...the Rangers didn't call him up last year because he probably would have been claimed off of waivers, but I hope they can re-sign this guy in the off-season and give him a legitimate chance to make the team next year. He made a nice little name for himself last year.

Rumors: Pitkanen, Orpik and Carter

Larry Brooks at the New York Post offers these rumors...

"Kevin Lowe wasn't selling when Rangers inquired at deadline about Edmonton's puck-rushing and power playable defenseman Joni Pitkanen, but Sather is expected to go back after the 24-year-old restricted free agent who earned $2.4M last year.

If the Rangers are not sizing up a jersey for Brooks Orpik, then Jeff Beukeboom had better be coming back, instead.

The good news (if you're not Philadelphia) is that cap issues might well prevent the Flyers from matching an offer sheet to imposing 23-year-old power forward Jeff Carter.

The good news is that compensation for a contract worth up to approximately $5.2M per is only one No. 1, one No. 2 and one No. 3, surely an equitable price to pay if you're a team a) drafting in the bottom half of the pool; b) that doesn't draft well; or, c) both, meaning you're the Devils.

The bad news is you're going to be paying $5.2M a year to Jeff Carter at this stage of his career."

...Pitkanen has been injury prone and will cost a lot. Would love to see Orpik in a Ranger jersey, but I could see Pittsburgh matching any offer. I like Carter also, but again it will cost us. We need more help on defense and the money would be better spent there.

Jagr Contract Talks to Begin This Week

Larry Brooks at the New York Post reports...

"...Jagr's agent and Sather are expected to commence negotiations this week after preliminary discussions in which both sides exchanged words of love, if not vows of 'til death do they part, at least not yet."

Brooks then wonders if re-signing Jagr will be holding back Drury and Gomez...

"If the commitment is made to Jagr, Drury then would either revert to his unfulfilling post as third-line center or shift to Gomez's left side. Neither is the role envisioned for the Big Moment Kid when he signed last July 1, and neither is the role likely to bring out his best.

At the same time, the money and cap space spent to retain Jagr would diminish the likelihood of the Blueshirts landing an accomplished sniper to complement Gomez."

...great to see that Sather and Jagr are already talking. I'm a big fan of seeing #68 back in a blueshirt next year.

...having said that, I do agree with Brooks that this might be holding Drury and Gomez back for another year. In an effort to stop that from happening, Sather should sit down with Jagr and ask him about taking the "C" away and giving it to Drury to begin the transition.

Friday, May 16, 2008

Blogs: Needs, Birthdays & Vogue Internships

Here's what other Ranger bloggers are posting about...

Inferno at the Rangers Review plays GM for a day and goes over every Rangers need.

At Ranger Ramblings, Anthony Mastantuoni posts about May 15th being the Rangers official birthday.

And the Dark Ranger reports on Sean Avery's first week interning at Vogue.

Lundqvist Bounced, Tyutin to Play for the Gold


On Friday, Lundqvist and Team Sweden fell to Canada 5-4 in the second of two semifinal games at Quebec City. As a result, the Swedes will play for bronze on Saturday, while Canada goes for gold against Russia on Sunday. Both teams enter the game with perfect 7-0-0 records since the start of the qualifying round.

- The game of the day on Friday was the eagerly-anticipated Canada-Sweden showdown, which pitted Lundqvist against Team Canada goalie Pascal Leclaire of the Columbus Blue Jackets. The two netminders had combined for 19 shutouts during the 2007-08 NHL regular season.

Leclaire and the Canadians would end up with the victory, as four second-period goals by Canada prompted Swedish coach Bengt Gustafsson to remove Lundqvist from the net for the third period. Lundqvist finished with 22 saves and was the victim of some bad bounces that went Canada's way. His replacement, Mikael Tellqvist, held the Canadians off the board with 11 saves over the final 20 minutes.

- Tyutin, paired on defense with Vitali Proshkin, saw 12:33 of ice time and finished the game with a plus-1 rating. He was on the ice for Sushinsky's final goal of the game at 17:56 of the third period.

Video: Gomez' Summer Plans, WC Highlights

Rangers On Demand his this video...

Scott Gomez speaks with Rangers On Demand about heading back to Alaska for the summer, but first taking some time to stick around New York City here.

Watch highlights of your New York Rangers in the World Championship tournament, including Lundqvist's win over the Czech's here.

Avery, Jagr Leave Impression on 2008 Playoffs

Shawn P. Roarke at looks at player journeys that have caught his eye during the 2008 Stanley Cup Playoffs...

Sean Avery, New York Rangers -- The agitating wing certainly packed a lot into his eight-game playoff run, filling it with peaks and valleys. He scored four goals, including a game-winner, became a cause célèbre for his attempts to distract Devils goalie Martin Brodeur and took part in one of the most-dissected and discussed handshake lines since Claude Lemieux weaved his way through the Red Wings back in the day. Oh yeah, he also saw his career, if not his life, flash before his eyes after suffering a lacerated spleen in Game 2 of the second round, an injury that was erroneously reported as a cardiac-arrest incident.

Jaromir Jagr, New York Rangers -- On the eve of these playoffs, speculation was rife that Jagr might be done with the NHL. He had turned in his worst season as a NHLer and had been accused of looking uninspired in doing it. There were rampant rumors that, as impending free agent, he would close out his career in Russia. Then, the playoffs started and Jagr was one of the five best forwards in the postseason, turning in a series-turning performance against the Devils, a team that had tortured him into despair just two springs earlier. Now, many of the same people that called Jagr washed up in March are now awaiting his return for another season on Broadway in the fall. Will it happen? That will be one of the most intriguing questions of the summer.

...Avery did have one crazy playoff run. Roarke doesn't even mention that Avery had a rule named after him.

Thursday, May 15, 2008

Jagr Could Sign With Montreal or Ottawa

When asked by an Oilers fan if Jaromir Jagr could end up in Edmonton this off-season Jim Matheson of The Edmonton Journal had this to say...

"I don't see the Oilers being in the hunt for Jagr, and I don't see him in any way interested in playing here. He's spent his whole NHL career playing in the East and, right now, East is the more wide-open conference, which is what he likes. If he doesn't re-sign in New York, where he has a very good relationship with coach Tom Renney, and still wants to play in the NHL and not hike over to play in Omsk for a truckload of money in the Russian Super League, I can see him signing in Montreal or maybe Ottawa but not out here."

...obviously this is just speculation by Matheson. I can't see Jagr being on any other team in the NHL other than the Rangers next year. And if he doesn't sign with the Rangers, I see him playing in the Russian Super League.

Jagr #1 All-time NHL Salary Earner

Brian Costello at The Hockey News gives this top 10 list of active players who have earned the most since former union head Bob Goodenow introduced salary disclosure in 1990...

10. Peter Forsberg, $65.4 million
9. Chris Pronger, $66.2 million
8. Mike Modano, $70.1 million
7. Paul Kariya, $70.7 million
6. Rob Blake, $72.0 million
5. Nicklas Lidstrom, $73.1 million
4. Keith Tkachuk, $73.7 million
3. Mats Sundin, $74.0 million
2. Joe Sakic, $87.2 million
1. Jaromir Jagr, $98.0 million

...while every Washington Capitals fan would say he's overpaid, I think Jagr deserves to be number one on that list.

Rangers Outdoor Game in Jeopardy

A.J. Perez at USA Today reports...

Yankee Stadium's status as one of the front-runners to host the NHL's next outdoor game could be in jeopardy, Commissioner Gary Bettman said Wednesday.

"There is some construction going on, which may impact us," he said. "There are some winterization issues because it's an older stadium. As I sit here today, I don't know whether or not they can be resolved."

Steve Zipay at Blue Notes has more on other possible sites here.

...why not move it to Shea Stadium? Although, as most Mets fans know, the parking situation would be a nightmare with the new CitiField taking up all the old lots.

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Rozsival to Sign with Tampa?

Eklund at HockeyBuzz has this rumor...

"Rozsival could be a great #2 in Tampa with Danny Boyle...stay tuned."

While Dubi at the Blueshirt Bulletin has this quote from Rozsival on his fondness of the Rangers...

Rozsival admits his own surprise at how important he has become to the Rangers. “It’s a jump, for me anyway,” he said. “As time goes by, you feel more responsible. On the other hand, you know that the coaches trust you, that they are behind you. You get more ice time, play on the power play, and when you see that it’s working, your confidence grows. Maybe it’s all just because I got to the Rangers. There were the Czechs, the ease, and I gained confidence. It starts to snowball.” And he recognizes what being a Ranger has done for him. “It seems that the decisions I’ve made so far have always been the best,” he concluded. “Like dealing exclusively with the Rangers in the NHL.”

...while I don't put much stock into anything Eklund reports, I could see Rozsvial signing somewhere else for the right price. It would be even more of a possibility if Jagr doesn't return to the Rangers next season. Dubi of the Bulletin even mentions that Rozsival's plans probably hinge on whether Jagr re-signs with the Rangers or chooses to play elsewhere.

Lundqvist, Sweden Headed to Worlds Semis


- Rangers goaltender Henrik Lundqvist, already an Olympic gold medalist, is now within two victories of his first World Championship gold after helping Sweden beat the Czech Republic 3-2 in overtime of a quarterfinal game on Wednesday in Quebec City.

Lundqvist was outstanding, stopping 29 shots and keeping his team in the game after the Czechs had taken a 2-1 lead on a third-period penalty-shot goal by Radim Vrbata.

- The loss was a disappointment for one of Lundqvist Rangers teammates, however, as Michal Rozsival saw his first major international tournament appearance come to an abrupt end. Shortly before the goal, Rozsival had played a key role in the Czechs' killing off an overtime power play, drawn by Weinhandl when he was pulled down by Martin Erat after getting in behind the Czech defense just 53 seconds into OT.

During the Swedish power play, Rozsival dove to block a shot and cleared the zone to break up a run of heavy pressure.

Rozsival finished the game third on the Czech team with 23:12 of ice time. He had one shot on goal in the third period but was robbed by Lundqvist.

Conflict of Interest at Newsday?

Lots of talk on the subject of Cablevision owned Newsday covering the Rangers, Knicks and MSG today:

In Newsday here and here.

New York Times here.

New York Post here.

...not sure if there will be. But they'll sure be criticized for it no matter what.

Blogs: Draft Picks & An Open Letter to Sather

Here's a few entries from other Ranger blogs...

Jess Rubinstein at Prospect Park looks overseas for possible Ranger draft picks.

The Dark Ranger has an open letter to Glen Sather.

Video: Dubinsky's Hat Trick

Here's video of Brandon Dubinsky's hat trick against Norway at The World Championships...

Rangers = Domi vs. Probert

John Buccigross at gives his thoughts when he sees an NHL team's name...

New York Rangers: Mess, Mike Richter on Pavel Bure, No. 2, The Garden, No. 99's goodbye, the next title, Milbury with a shoe in his hand, Domi vs. Probert.

...these ESPN guys know so little about hockey its sickening. How can he not mention the "Eddie, Eddie, Eddie" chant Giacomin received in his Garden return as a Red Wing? Awful.

Baranka to Play in Russia

Dubi at the Blueshirt Bulletin reports...

"Ivan Baranka has signed a contract to play in Russia next season with Spartak Moscow (Spartak is Russian for Spartacus, the legendary Roman figure being a hero in the Soviet Union for leading a slave revolt). The initial report, which has been propagated from Europe to North America, appeared at, a Czech web site -- even Slovakia's premier hockey site,, has referred to's report, and Baranka is Slovakian. So far, there has been no announcement on the Spartacus web site nor confirmation from the Rangers.

The move by Baranka might not exclude him from consideration for the NHL, as these types of contracts often have "out" clauses, but it does mean that he does not want to consider a return to Hartford for a fourth season in the AHL. The Rangers' second round pick (50th overall) in the 2003 draft played on game in the NHL last season at a pro-rated NHL salary of $521,667 and registered one assist. A series of injuries have limited the defenseman to no more than 62 games in any one season (last season). He turns 23 this coming Monday and is a restricted free agent."

...I actually thought Baranka would have a chance to compete for a spot on the Rangers next year. Guess not.

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Puck Tracking On Its Way Back?

Michael McCarthy at USA Today reports...

"The NHL and cable TV partner Versus are talking about introducing "puck-tracking" technology as early as the 2008-09 season, executives from the network and the league told USA TODAY.

Tracking would make it easier for TV viewers to follow the fast-moving puck. But the idea brought back memories of Fox's "glowing puck" experiment from 1996-98. It got mixed reviews, with some players and coaches complaining the internal electronics of the "FoxTrax" puck made it play differently. When ABC picked up the NHL's broadcast rights in 1998, the idea was junked."

...before you freak out read this from William Houston of the Globe & Mail...

"Versus is pursuing a puck-tracking technology that, according to USA Today, could be used as soon as the next NHL season. This would be for replays rather than live coverage. Anything involving a live application - such as the FoxTrax from the 1990s - would require the NHL's approval and participation."

...whew...for those who want to re-live "FoxTrax" check this out...

Yeas and Nays

Over at Scotty Hockey, Scotty looks at free agents Glen Sather should pursue and others he should stay away from. In looking at possible free agents Scotty had this criteria...

"Let me preface the list by who I automatically eliminated: any Islander, any Devil, any center and any restricted free agent. The first two are self explanatory so I will just explain the second pair. The Blueshirts have an unexpected bounty of depth signed down the middle in Dubi, Gomez, Drury, Bettsy, Anisimov and more. As for RFAs, simply said, they aren't worth it. They demand big contracts and draft picks going the other way."

...although I don't agree with some of Scotty's opinions (Give Todd Fedoruk a look?!?!?!?) his analysis is very insightful and thorough.

More Hossa/Rangers Rumors

Ted Kulfan at The Detroit News reports...

"The chances of Hossa re-signing with the Penguins are slim because of salary cap problems. Montreal, Boston and the Rangers seem prepared to make attractive offers to Hossa, 29.

The Bruins appear to be the front-runners to sign Hossa, who is making $7 million this season. But the Rangers will have some flexibility if they get Brendan Shanahan and Jaromir Jagr off their books."

...not sure what I think about Hossa over Jagr. I was never a big fan of Hossa because of his lack of production in the playoffs. However, after this year's playoff run with Pittsburgh I'm re-evaluating my opinion of him.