Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Rangers Are a Strange Team

Scott Burnside at ESPN takes a look at the Rangers during his Atlantic Division offseason report...

New York Rangers
What a strange, strange team. GM Glen Sather continued his annual foray into the world of the inexplicable, signing former Minnesota thug Derek Boogaard to a four-year pact worth $6.5 million. This after last year's disastrous signing of the thuggish Donald Brashear. Again we ask, "Huh?" The Rangers still lack a No. 1 center, although we suspect Vinny Prospal will pull some duty there again after the Rangers returned him to the fold. And we like the recent addition of former Los Angeles King Alexander Frolov, who has 30-goal potential as long as coach John Tortorella can get him on task. The blueline is still young (assuming Sather can get restricted free-agent defenseman Marc Staal under contract), although there's no real power-play quarterback. And there's still the issue of the onerous Wade Redden, Michal Rozsival and Brashear contracts the Rangers presume to bury in the minors or otherwise dispose of. In short, one step up and two steps back for the Rangers -- once again.


...i always find it funny how anti-Ranger these so-called experts are. How does Burnside not even mention the re-signing of Christensen, Prust and Girardi? All of whom are expected to make an impact this season. Seem like pretty important offseason moves to me. No?

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33 comments:

Anonymous said...

I don't know Kevin, I think the ESPN post is spot on. Only in our world is the signing of Girardi, Christensen, or Prust a big deal. Really, these are very mediocre players and the fact that these were "big" moves for the Rangers illustrates just how poor this team is.

Anonymous said...

No. Christensen is a fourth liner playing up and Prust is very replaceable. The team is awful. Great goalie. Great sniper. One decent (still-unsigned) young defenseman and a roster of 3rd and 4th liners and last pair defenseman plus a bunch of over-hyped prospects in the system. NYR goes nowhere until Sather leaves. And when you mention how bad Redden and Roszival's contracts are, please don't forget to mention Drury's. He is a complete bust and maybe the worst signing of the three.

Joshua said...

I just think it's mostly the same regurgitation of stuff you could've said last year - there's nothing new. Seriously, it's like ESPN told him that morning that he needed an Atlantic Division review by 3pm, so he threw together what he could. How long could it have taken any of us to do that paragraph from an anti-Rangers side? About 8 minutes? Those reports will continue to be a joke until the Rangers are in the top 4 in January, when everyone is fainlly on the bandwagon, then you'll get all the stupid power rankings having them being a "surprise team on the rise." That's why it's better to read the beat writers, at least they know what's going on. Not some ESPN guy who's on vacation in August.

Chris said...

Yeah they pretty much cut & paste the same rangers articles every season. Not to mention saying there's no PP QB, ever hear of Del Zotto?

Anonymous said...

Del Zotto isn't a powerplay QB. He sucks! Mark Streit rules!

Anonymous said...

I'm sorry Joshua, did you write that the Rangers are going to be "top 4" in January? I'm a huge Rangers fan -- but a realistic one. That ain't happening.

ESPN can cut and paste the same Rangers article every season, because every season Sather pulls the same stupid sh*t and has this team going nowhere.

Rick said...

How many players do we need to go through to find 3rd line players that are worth a crap? Last three years there has been a minimum of 28 players. Thats enough for 3 lines every year. Houston we have a plan(a problem)

RJ said...

Christensen, Prust and Girardi?

Christensen sucks. Prust is a 4th liner who will probably play about 3 minutes a game. Who knows if Girardi will improve or digress like he did last season.

These were not big signings by any stretch of the imagination.

John said...

Strange Team...yes. Terrible team...not if you actually watch them once in a while. Call me an optimist, but this team is pretty close to being a legit contender. Sure, Christensen is a stretch as a top centerman, but there's no doubt he's got the skills for it. Prust is a 3/4 liner who brings energy & grit to a team in sore need of it. And Girardi is a top 4 defenceman than any team would take in a second. I'd be more inclined to listen to an ESPN writer if they actually knew anything about hockey. Taking their opinion is akin to taking Mike Francessa's! This team has excellent talent, but lacks tru leadership. Hopefully, that's what emerges this year! And you anonymous Fishstick fans should just stay in you holes, it's safer there!

chef dave said...

I think MDZ is going to have a big year on the PP & I love how all the experts are so used to Sathers' offseason insanity & now the only thing they have to harp on is giving an enforcer, a legit team need, a contract that pays him maybe 300k too much a year for maybe 1 year too long. If that's our biggest blunder, I'll take it!

JoeR said...

I also so no mention of Mats Zuccarello-Aasen, who was a real bright spot in the Olympics, and who plenty of other teams wanted.

Scott said...

Unfortunately, if you take the bias out (very hard for all of us here), that Burnside report is pretty much spot on.

Take a step back from the close-up point of view that comes with being a passionate fan and see the team for what it is, mediocre. They might play well and string together a nice little season, at best get the 6 seed and at ABSOLUTE best win ONE playoff series. The sky is not the limit for this team, somewhere around the Eastern Conference semis IS.

Kevin DeLury said...

Man you guys are hating today. I thought the offseason was for optimism.

I know this team is far from being perfect and you guys are taking a practical look at this team, but we saw just this last season that flawed teams can make it to the playoffs and beyond.

So I'm going to be positive going forward until of course the season starts and the Rangers suck. Kidding.

William said...

i agree. Girardi still feels like a 4/5, possibly 6th defensemen on a legit contender. ranger fans seem to have a skewed view of what a quality defenseman is, having had to suffer thru Rozsvial, Redden, and the like, over the past few years. Pretty sure he'd be competing w/ oskar bartulis, sean o'donnell for the 6th spot on Philly's back line this year, as their top 5 consists of Pronger, Timmonen, Carle, Meszaros, Coburn

Jack said...

Thanks for staying optimistic Kevin. Thinking the team is the best in the league in the stretch; I read this blog over Carp's because he's a negative nancy.

Dan W said...

Well we really didnt seem to improve. All our improvements will have to come from Frolov and the kids playing better. I think if Slats can cast one of his magic trade spells and get us a center for gabby and frolov we would be a much better team. I know how unlikely that is though. We will see how much staal gets and if we keep redden.

Rick said...

What is missing is a #1 center and a #1 Dman. Those two items will doom any team for competing at the top level. To make my point, the last 20 years the Conn Smyth trophy has been awarded to Centermen 9 times to Goalies 6 times to Defensemen 4 times and to wingers once. We are weak down the middle except for Henrik and in any sport being weak down the middle spells crap.

justanotherrangerfan said...

I think the ESPN post is dead on but being the Ranger fan that i am i agree with Kevin on the optimism. Never going to get an outside analysis praising the Rangers anytime soon and i am fine with that.
more importantly than 1 more guy we can get under cap limit is going to be Torts. He lost the team 2/3rds the way through last year. they gave up on him and it showed. if torts can figure out how to bring the guys together and play them with consistency (regardless of who is playing with who) it will bread confidence. and as we all witnessed just a few months ago anything can happen once you make the playoffs. It is all about the chemistry, something torts has not been able to find.

wonderin said...

Rangers OT/Shootout record was 4 and 11...worst in league last year...this year's team is going to improve on that stat alot...

ry-man said...

this team will be surprising but nothing closer to a cup contender than it was over the last 10 years.

Scotty said...

I'll be the ray of optimism and say that this team is better than last years team. I'm excited to see what Frolov will bring and the potential in MZA. In regards to White, he's a win/win, potential to get back to form and if not, he's in the minors. I know we still have some issues but either way, I see the light.

evantonio said...

i miss joey kocur.

Anonymous said...

Strange? NO THEY'RE JUST TERRIBLE! LET'S GO ISLANDERS! ARE PROSPECTS ARE BETTER!!!!!

Anonymous said...

Correction: OUR PROSPECTS ARE BETTER!!!!!

LI Joe said...

lots of anonymous isles fans here with the worst being the 2nd post. redden is by far the worst signing here. the article was talking about contracts that could be done away with so listed redden and rozy, and brash who is already gone after article written. drury has full no movement clause so the team can't plan on moving him.

Anonymous said...

ESPN is nobody when it comes to hockey. When was the last time they aired a game.....Exactly!

Burnside is strange looking and secretly likes the Islanders.

Evan S said...

ok, except Anisimov or Stephan could emerge as the top line center. Plus, Del Zotto established himself as the powerplay quarterback last year...a big reason why it improved.

LI Joe said...

i think we'll be about the same. last yr was a bit of abberation as teams in mid 80's in pts were in the race all the way. normally teams need 92 or even 94 pts. so just to compete they'll need a few more pts just for that alone. although we were really bad in ots and shootouts so one would think we'll get better on that. mza could really help on shootouts i think

ivaNYRicov said...

This isn't a bad team guys. Could be better but we dont suck. We don't score enough goals. That has been our problem. It is that simple. We would have been a different team had Higgins and Kotalik and some others played up to par. As a team we couldn't score and Hank had to be perfect with a young defense in front of him. If Frolov and MZA can do what Higgins and Kotalik should have done last year, we will be better, we will win more games. Hank will be more rested, and wont feel so much pressure to stop everything or we lose. That mental pressure is a lot to bear for an entire 82 game season. This year, our defense is a little older, wiser I guess if exclude some players. We just need to score more. Power play has a lot to do with that too. Our defense is really not that bad, our PK is good, our goalie great. Whats missing... Goals!!!... well that's one way of looking at it.

Scotty is right on.
Kevin is right too. You have to be optimistic. Otherwise why even bother being so emotionally attached to a team if the only emotions you associate with it are dark gloomy and hopeless...

ivaNYRicov said...

and I miss joey kocur too... but there are a lot of cheekbones that don't...

Rick said...

I don't know if gloom and doom is appropiate analogy or not. I tend to think that some guard their expectations because of past results. Some look at the skill set and see the same ole crap and some will see the offense improving by adding a reclamation project in Frolov and an unknown in MZA. And some will see the best projections as reality or starting points to improvements.
I think in the end we all die for the cause in our own way, we all take the time to express our hopes and expectations. We are fans regardless of the thought patterns, or we wouldn't be here.

LI Joe said...

i was very optomistic during the 90's. and even the yrs we played atl and nj in 1st rds and won before losing to buff and pitt. so those 2 yrs i was very optomistic. current group the last 2 yrs not so much.

ivaNYRicov said...

Well put Rick.