Wednesday, June 30, 2010

The Day We've All Been Waiting For (Updated)

Update: 10:41 p.m.:
For those of you in the Rangers should go after Kris Versteeg camp, I'm sorry to inform you that the Blackhawks just traded him to the Maple Leafs for a bag of pucks according to TSN.

Original Post:
Tomorrow marks the opening of free agency and for the Rangers that usually means Glen Sather spending like the Real Housewives of New Jersey, but cap restraints will probably make tomorrow one of the quieter July firsts we've seen around here.

I only expect some re-signings. Nothing too drastic.

I know a lot of you don't believe Sather when he's says the team is dedicated to youth and that they'll go with youngsters over underachieving veterans. And you have every right to think that.

For some reason I do. There's a good possibility I'm being duped, but Sather has spoken more in the last few weeks about the direction of the team than the last nine years combined and he's making a lot of sense.

Maybe he had an epiphany or hit his head. Either way you know what? I don't care. I finally see this team committed to building a winner from within which to me is the only was to build a true successful franchise.

I'm having a great vacation and I appreciate all your comments as I get myself refreshed for another season of blogging the Blueshirts.

To make up for my lack of posts this week, I'll be hosting another live chat sometime next week so stay tuned

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

I Leave the Blog for One Day & They Waive Voros?!?!?

Man first Aaron Voros decides to delete his Twitter account now the Rangers decide to delete him.

What's next Erik Christensen turning down a two-year deal that pays him between $1.4 & $1.5 million per. Wait what happened?

Ok, just tell me how Stepan, Werek and Grachev dominated at Prospect Camp today. Wait who?

At least the Rangers first round pick Dylan McIlrath didn't compare himself to the Canucks Willie Mitchell. Please tell me you're kidding.

I may never go on vacation again.

Did I Really Book My Vacation This Week?

I guess I need to look at the NHL calendar before I agree to a family vacation because for some reason I agreed to take one this week.

Yes on one of the biggest weeks of the NHL season when the draft is analyzed and rumors run wild in anticipation of the July 1st opening of free agency I will be on vacation.

But fear not, I will be taking my laptop and the hotel has internet access. So while the updates will not be coming as often as usual I will make sure to have every link to Ranger related material on the web.

What I ask is if you guys could help me out by e-mailing me (, @replying me on Twitter, posting on my Facebook wall or put in the comments section any links you see out there. It would make my life a lot easier. Thank you so much.

Rangers Let Lebron Choose First Round Pick McIlrath

Steve Stirling at Intent to Blow gives a satirical look at the Rangers allowing Lebron James to make their 2010 first round pick in an attempt to lure him to the Knicks...

“I would venture to say this is a slam dunk,” said Rangers General Manager Glen Sather. “This is just the latest in a series of shrewd decisions made by Mr. Dolan that have kept Rangers hockey and Knicks basketball at their pinnacle for the last decade.”

The Rangers chose Dylan McIlrath with their first pick, a move that angered many fans because highly touted prospect Cam Fowler remained available. James later said he made the selection because McIlrath’s name “made me giggle.”

...very funny stuff from Stirling. The sad thing is you would have thought LeBron had been making the Rangers free agent decisions the last 10 years they've been so bad.

This is the line of the story...

He (Sather) added “Now if you will excuse me, I’m going to go throw hundred dollar bills at Ilya Kovalchuk’s face until he signs a contract with us. Because if I’ve learned one thing, it’s that players who come here from the Devils always work out like gangbusters.”

...i had to laugh to keep from crying this is so true.

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Will Sather Finally Be Patient?; Redden Hartford Bound?

Arthur Staple at Newsday was able to sit down with Glen Sather to discuss the Rangers plan this Summer...

"We'll probably be a little more patient than we've been," Sather told Newsday. "I don't feel like we need to do a lot. We could have done a lot the last 10 days, but we chose to keep our kids. We'd like to see how some of these guys can develop."

...if Sather does decide to stay patient it's hard to give him any credit as he'll only be doing it based on the unfavorable cap situation he created. Although this is nice to hear.

One item in Staples column I'm sure Ranger fans will be thrilled about is this...

"There is more room on defense, where Wade Redden is almost certain to be waived and sent to Hartford when training camp ends. 'He's been discussed,' Sather said."

...i know this is only Staples opinion but he must have been told something from someone within the organization to come to this conclusion.

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Monday, June 28, 2010

Graves Instructs Kids...No Not Those Kids

@thenyrangers tweets this photo of Adam Graves instructing a group of 7-9 yr olds today at the Rangers Youth Hockey Clinic at World Ice in Queens.

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Prospect Camp Quotes, Observations & Video

Steve Zipay at Blue Notes has these quotes from the first day of Prospect Camp...

“We need some help right up the middle on our backline and center ice,” said John Tortorella. “It doesn’t have to be a 35-year-old veteran, it could be a kid, but you have to live with the bumps. I’m anxious to see Stepan (a center) play and see what he does, and McDonagh (a defenseman). As far as where our philosophy’s going….we want to add with our youth and not a veteran guy at the end of his career.”

...i guess Prospal's not being re-signed.

Torts added “a lot of teams were asking about our kids. There were deals to be made there, they wanted our kids; we stayed steady, we need to continue doing that. It’s not like we want to be in last place, but when you have kids in lineup---and I think we need to have more----there’s gonna be some bumps in the road. ”

...great job by the organization not giving up on it's future. Except for that whole Sanguinetti trade. But I guess he doesn't count.

Zipay also had some observations including that he felt Rangers brass would love to see Derek Stepan make the club.

...this should be an exciting week for Ranger fans to get a glimpse of the team's future or from what Torts is saying their present.

While Andrew Gross at Ranger Rants has an interesting post on Ryan McDonagh including quotes from the big defenseman who sounded like someone who was leaning towards returning to Wisconsin...

“It’d be my team and I could lead by example,” McDonagh said. “And at Wisconsin, there’s always the chance to get back to the next championship game.”

...that doesn't sound very encouraging.

Finally has their own piece on Day 1 and are asking fans to submit questions for the Rangers prospects.

Here is video of Evgeni Grachev on Day 1...

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Flames Waive Kotalik

Dan Rosen at reports Calgary has put Ales Kotalik and the remainder of his contract (two years for a reported $6 million) on the waiver wire.

Calgary plans on buying out Kotalik if he goes unclaimed.

...who in their right mind would think Kotalik is worth $3 million per? Oh wait.

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No Qualifying Offer for Christensen Hoping to Sign More Term, Less $ (Update)

Update, 3:23 p.m.:
Steve Zipay at Blue Notes reports the Rangers will be giving Brandon Prust a qualifying offer.

...looking forward to Prust accepting and having him for another season.

Original Post:
From former Ranger and current Sportsnet analyst Nick Kypreos...

Sounds like NYR Lisin/ Christensen won't get qualifying offers. NY still hoping Christensen will re-sign for more term and at less moneyless than a minute ago via Twitter for BlackBerry®

Larry Brooks says this has been the Rangers intention all along.

...hoping the Rangers can get something done with Christensen. His chemistry with Gaborik makes him a very valuable commodity for the Rangers. If he can play a more consistent game than last year the Rangers could maybe get away with not bringing in an overpriced center.

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No Similarities Between Dubinsky & Staal Contract Issues

Earlier today, Greg Wyshynski at Puck Daddy compared the difficult contract negotiations between the Rangers and Brandon Dubinsky last year with the Marc Staal situation this offseason.

However, Larry Brooks, maybe in response to Wyshynski, says there is no such similarity...

No similarity between Dubinsky, Staal talks. NYR hammrred Dubinsky all last summer. This year have made very reasonable 1st offer to Staalless than a minute ago via web

...i'm going to have to agree with Brooks here. A four-year $14 million offer is very reasonable whereas last season the Rangers were basically insulting Dubinsky by signing Callahan so quickly and then offering him one year contracts for between $500,00-$750,00.

...Zipay and Gross are tweeting away at Prospect camp so instead of copying 100 tweets I'll just get you their blog posts when they publish them later today.

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McDonagh Talks Future Plans

Andrew Gross tweets...

#NYRangers McDonagh: Del Zotto and Gilroy making team last year is "enticing." But so is earning degree and being captain at Wisconsin.less than a minute ago via web

...i think the trade of Sanguinetti along with the signing of Stepan will be too "enticing" for McDonagh (hey I finally spelled his name correctly) to turn down this year.

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Tweeting from Prospect Camp

The Rangers prospect camp opened today and Andrew Gross from the Bergen Record and Steve Zipay of Newsday have been tweeting all morning including these...

Torts watching 1st NYR group from coaches' perch: Bourque, Hobbs, Kundratek, Horak, Hobbs, McKelvie, Read, McDonagh, Stepan, Werek, Niemiless than a minute ago via web

Adam Graves and Hartford coaches Ken Gernander and Pat Boller, J.J. Daignault on ice leading drills.less than a minute ago via mobile web Ranger fans we are lucky to have beat writers such as Gross and Zipay to keep us updated.

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Rangers Offer for Staal; May Lose Shelley

Larry Brooks at the New York Post reports that the Rangers have offered Marc Staal a contract in the range of four years for $14 million.

His agent, Bobby Orr, is seeking substantially more.

...lots of debate on the blog yesterday on how much Staal is worth. I think this is a fair first offer from the Rangers. Not sure that Staal is worth substantially more but I wouldn't be against the final number being four years for $15-15.5 million.

Brooks also reports that the Rangers may be exploring other options than re-signing the popular Jody Shelley who is said to be seeking $1.5 million per.

...$1.5 million is a bit much for Shelley but this looks like Orr all over again. A popular enforcer that makes the team better for some reason not wanted by the Rangers. You think Sather would have learned from the Brashear mistake.

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Draft Party Recap

The Rangers never seem to sign the right free agent and can't get out of the second round, but one thing they can do is throw a party.

The Rangers draft party Friday night at The Hill restaurant was a fun and entertaining time. Raffles, trivia, Nick Fotiu working the room like a politician, three future stars (Kreider, Werek and Bourque) talking and taking pics with every fan and most importantly $3 Bud Lights in a 16 oz. Rangers souvenir cup. I challenge you to find me a bar in New York with that drink special.

The crowd of about 300 fit perfectly into the bar and was pretty fired up leading up to the draft. You could tell Rangers fans were getting a bit anxious as all the top forwards were be taken and by the time the 10th pick came and none of the forwards most Ranger fans coveted were available the consensus was they were going Fowler or Taresenko.

When the Dylan McIlrath pick was made a sense of shock went over the crowd followed by anger and then a very spirited "Fire Sather" chant broke out. Obviously as I know now a big time over-reaction. Except for the "Fire Sather" part.

As far as Kreider, Werek and Bourque go Kreider is a beast he probably could have taken every guy in the place, Werek seemed like a queit kid but was very engaging with the fans and I was most struck with how small Bourque was. I'm 5' 8" and was towering over him (see pic to the right). Ok maybe not towering but you get the point.

The meetup was really amazing as I was able to talk with readers of the blog and say thank you for your support. A big shout out to Fleisch, Chris, Desmond and his wife (congrats on winning the raffle), Nicole (In the classic "I Only Date Rangers Fans" shirt in pic to the left. Bet you guys regret not attending the meetup now), Scotty Hockey, Kevin Baumer of Blueshirt Bulletin (sorry for expletive laced interview after the pick) and everyone else I was lucky enough to hang out with and meet.

And a special shout out to Nicole (yes another Nicole) and her friend who I met in Penn Station after the draft party, both of whom are big fans of the "Blogspot" blog and only heard about the draft party through this blog but didn't come over to the meetup to say hello because they weren't sure if the group that was hanging out was us. You two totally missed out.

Because of the success of the meetup, I definitely want to do more especially now that my friends and I are reconsidering cancelling our season tickets. Plenty of pre and post game meetups at Traks.

I have more pics and will get them up later.

Sunday, June 27, 2010

Girardi Seeking 4-Year $3 Million Deal

Larry Brooks at the New York Post reports that Dan Girardi, eligible to become a Group II free agent when the market opens on Thursday, is seeking a four-year deal with the Rangers for upwards of $3 million per.

Brooks adds that if the Rangers balk at the request Girardi can file for a one-year arbitration award and then become unrestricted next season.

Finally Brooks says that Marc Staal, also an impending Group II but without arbitration rights, likely will wait on Girardi's contract before signing a new deal. So it's probably going to cost between $7-7.5M a year for the pair.

...i'd love for Sather to somehow get that number down to $6 million for the two of them ($2.5 for Girardi and $3.5 for Staal). Not sure about four years either. Three would be ideal.

...i promise I'll have draft party pics and review at some point today.

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Staal Negotiations Stalled; McDonough Not Expected to Go Back to School

As I posted last night, the Rangers and RFA Marc Staal are far apart on contract negotiations. Larry Brooks at the New York Post has this quote from Sather...

"He's a good player, we like him, we want to have him back, he has a long future with us and we want to treat him fairly," Sather said of the first-pair defenseman. "We'd like to have it done, but where it ends up is anyone's imagination."

Sather went on to indirectly say that agents such as Staal's the legendary Bobby Orr are "sometimes not getting it."

Michael Obernauer at the Daily News adds that Staal is looking for bigger money than Brandon Dubinsky's two-year $3.7 million deal.

...unfortunately it sounds like this could drag out the way Dubinsky's negotiations did last year. have to understand Staal's side as he' playing alongside two overpaid, underperforming defensemen and want to be paid accordingly. However Sather has to be smart to as the Rangers cap restraints are always a problem. Hopefully Sather can use some of the additional $2 million the Rangers received with the 5% cap ceiling increase to get this done sooner rather than later.

Brooks also had this quote from Sather on McDonoughs needing to sign with the Rangers especially after the Blueshirts traded Bobby Sanguinetti...

"I don't expect him to go back to school under these circumstances," Sather said. "He's got the opportunity. It seems like a wise move to come out now."

...with Sangs being traded the kid is going to have great opportunity in the organization.

Finally Sather addressed the backup goaltender situation by stating they are looking for someone to reduce Henrik Lundqvist's workload to 64 games and a low price.

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Sunday Headline

Bergen Record - Rangers trade Bobby Sanguinetti

New York Post - Rangers select Thomas, son of ex-Isle & Devil

Journal News - Rangers go mostly with size, grit on second day of draft

Newsday - Rangers trade Sanguinetti, get two picks

Newsday - Rangers take Steve Thomas' son, Christian

Saturday, June 26, 2010

Rangers & Staal a Chasm Away on Contract Talks

Steve Zipay tweets...

Glen Sather on RFA Marc Staal talks: "Not a wide gap, a chasm"less than a minute ago via web big is a chasm? Wonder what type of numbers have been kicked around.

...what do you think is a fair contract for Staal?

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Wait There Was More Draft Today?

The Rangers had five draft picks earlier today and picked a forward for every one of them including Steve Thomas' son Christian.

...why are we drafting the son of a former Islander and Devil? that's how you address the need at forward. Three of the five picks are 6' 3" and taller.

For video of Thomas and his father click here.

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Meet Dylan McIlrath


Ok so I went on a little rant this morning about the McIlrath pick without knowing a lot of the facts which is never a good thing. Being hungover from the draft party didn't help either.

After finally reading Larry Brooks article which states that Dallas was going to take McIlrath at #11 and seeing Bob McKenzie's tweet that he wasn't getting past #15 I have to take back my criticism of the Rangers not trading down to get him.

With all the top forwards gone and the Rangers not needing another offensive defenseman, McIlrath makes a whole lot of sense. And obviously this was not a panic pick as I ridiculously stated. The Rangers did their homework and got their man.

And how can I disagree with Gordie Clark especially when he says this about McIlrath who is awesomely nicknamed "The Undertaker"...

Jeff Gorton, the Rangers' Assistant Directory, Player Personnel added this on McIlrath. While Mark Messier continued heaping praise on the bruising defenseman here.

More on McIlrath's toughness at Blue Notes,, The Prospect Park and Puck Daddy.

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Sangs Traded to Carolina reports that the Rangers have traded defenseman Bobby Sanguinetti to the Carolina Hurricanes for Washington's second round pick in the 2011 NHL Entry Draft and a 6th round pick, 157th overall, in the 2010 NHL Entry Draft.

...i think Sangs coming camp last year completely out of shape after Torts put the team on notice really made the organization sour on him. Having said that I never thought they'd trade him this early in his career. And I assumed that if they did trade him he'd be a sweetener for say a Rozsival.

...also there's really no spot for him this season and the Rangers are probably hoping McDonough will be ready next season.

...too bad. I was excited for the kid's future when the Rangers drafted him but it just never clicked for him.

...sorry for the lack of posts today, but the wife was nice enough to let me go to the draft party last night (review & pics to come) so I'm repaying her by taking the kids off her hands all day.

...i'll also be posting a retraction on my earlier comments regarding last night's pick. When I'm wrong, I'll always admit it.

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McIlrath Headlines

Bergen Record - Rangers select bruising defenseman in first round

Bergen Record - Rangers' top draft pick: Dylan McIlrath

New York Post - Intimidating McIlrath taken with 10th pick

Daily News - Rangers draft McIlrath, add toughness at D

Journal News - Team stuns experts with top pick in draft

Newsday - Rangers take rugged defenseman McIlrath

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In my final post before I left for the draft party I was kidding when I said 'Here's hoping Sather doesn't somehow screw this up.' Well he did.

Is McIlrath the crease clearing, Beukeboom type defenseman every Ranger fan craves? Absolutely. Were the top forwards the Rangers seeking all taken? For the most part.

But wow at #10 you want to come away with a better player than him.

What I can't understand is if McIlrath was the player they wanted they could have easily traded down to get him and added some late round picks.

I'm wondering if it was a panic pick after all the forwards they were interested in were taken, they weren't convinced Tarasenko would be coming over from the KHL and they didn't feel an offensive defenseman (Fowler) was a need.

But what do I know. I wasn't in the war room and maybe no one wanted to trade up. I trust Gordie Clark's decision making and will root like heck that in 3-4 years this kid is making life miserable for Crosby.

Lots to get to today including draft party review, links to McIlrath, post first round reaction and getting ready for tonight's second round.

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Friday, June 25, 2010

Final Draft Party Meetup Reminder

Just a final reminder before I head out to the Rangers Draft Party we will be meeting at The Hill restaurant, Third Ave. between 29th and 30th Streets at 6:45 p.m. by the back staircase.

I will not be live blogging or tweeting from the party, I'm just going to have a couple (or more) beers and hang with the greatest fans in all of hockey.

I will be taking some pics and should have them up by Monday. Here's hoping Sather doesn't somehow screw this up.

Hope to see everyone there.

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Rangers Draft War Room

From Rangers Twitter account...

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Niederreiter & Johansen Won't Be Around at #10

Jess Rubenstein at The Prospect Park feels that Nino Niederreiter and Ryan Johansen will not be around by the time the Rangers pick at #10 in tonight's 2010 NHL Draft and thinks the Rangers should draft C Emerson Etem of Medicine Hat.

TSN has Etem, who is originally from Long Beach, California, as their #17 ranked prospect.

...don't know much about Etem except that he was a great roller hockey player in Cali who has made amazing progress as a player the last three years.

...he seems a bit of a reach at #10 but if the Rangers are on Etem, I wonder if they would trade down assuming they could get him later in the first round.

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Rangers Contacted on Savard; Monitoring Richards

Larry Brooks at the New York Post discusses numerous trade and draft options for the Rangers including these...

"The Rangers, who hold the 10th overall selection, have been contacted by the Bruins regarding Marc Savard, who would be the ideal set-up man for right-wing sniper Marian Gaborik. But Ranger GM Glen Sather is unlikely to deal for the one-time Blueshirt pivot because of the contract under which Savard carries an annual cap charge of just over $4M through the 2016-17 season...

"... The Rangers will monitor the situation with budget-conscious Dallas regarding 30-year-old playmaking pivot and power play quarterback Brad Richards, who has one year at $7.8 million remaining on his contract."

...a lot of questions during last night's live chat regarding these two. As Brooks says and I alluded to last night Savard has way too long a contract and concussion is a concern. I think the Rangers would be better off staying away from trading away youngsters for Richards then look to possibly sign him next year.

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2010 NHL Draft Tonight @ 7pm on Versus

For last minute draft news in anticipation of tonight's first round of the 2010 NHL draft head over to's draft page.

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Rangers Will Not Be Making Blockbuster Deal

Andrew Gross at Ranger Rants reports that Glen Sather will not be involved in a blockbuster deal this offseason because he’s not willing to part with his young talent that the other teams are asking for.

...i'm loving this new Sather. Or is this the old Sather Rangers fans thought they were getting. I know most of it is due to him not being able to spend because of cap space, but he could have easily signed Plekanec for $6 million and then sent Redden down to Hartford in September.

...really excited about the dedication to youth.

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Successful Live Chat; See You Tonight

Just wanted to again express my sincere thanks for everyone's participation in the "Late Night Live Chat" last night.

I was expecting around five people, but you guys and gals really came through as I was answering your questions until almost 11:45 p.m. For that I am ridiculously thankful.

I've been kicking around the idea of doing live chats after games this season to give an outlet for Rangers fans to either express their frustration or excitement. Let me know how you thought the chat went in the comments section. What did you like, not like, what else should I be doing? I'd really love to get your feedback.

And just another reminder that I'll be doing a meetup at the Rangers draft party tonight at The Hill restaurant at around 6:45 p.m. I've already been in contact with a number of you who will be attending. For more info on the event and where we'll be meeting click here.

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Gorton Video Chat Today @ Noon

Jeff Gorton, Rangers' Assistant Director, Player Personnel, will be taking draft questions from fans and answering them via video web chat today at noon at

Gordie Clark took questions from fans yesterday. A replay can be seen here. way this will be as informative as my late night live chat last night. Yeah right.

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Draft Day Headlines

Daily News - Taylor Hall, Tyler Seguin likely to be top picks of Edmonton Oilers, Boston Bruins

Bergen Record - Rangers could trade up or down in draft

Bergen Record - Rangers' draft prospects

New York Post - LARRY BROOKS: Trades might trump draft-day news

Newsday - Rangers, Islanders might be 'taking' not 'trading' during draft

Newsday - Picking 10th, Rangers will look for offense

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Thursday, June 24, 2010

Late Night Live Chat

Rangers a Possible Destination for Souray

630AM in Edmonton is reporting that a Sheldon Souray trade from the Oilers is imminent and that the Rangers are a possible destination.

Souray who is coming off a broken hand injury that ended his season last year, has two years left on his contract that would pay him $5.4 million per year.

...i think the Souray to Rangers rumor is the one I am the most sick of hearing about. This rumor has been floating around since January. Unless Redden is headed back to Edmonton not sure how this makes sense for the Rangers.

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Lundqvist Moving From Upper West Side Apartment

Joey over at Curbed reports that Henrik Lundqvist just sold his 1,300-square-foot two-bedroom apartment on the 20th floor of 225 West 83rd Street.

No deed has reached public record yet, but the last asking price was $1.75 million, which is what he paid for the place a few years back.

Lundqvist has already moved on to a $3.9 penthouse in West 52nd Street's The Link.

For more pics of Lundqvist's old apartment click the above link. the bear skin rug Hank.

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Sharks Re-Sign Marleau & Pavelski

TSN reports that the San Jose Sharks have come to contract terms with Patrick Marleau and Joe Pavelski.

Marleau, who would have become an unrestricted free agent on July 1st, has agreed to a four-year deal worth $6.9 million per year, while Pavelski, a restricted free agent, has also agreed to a four-year contract, one that will pay him $4 million per year.

...doubt Rangers had any interest in either player, but one less center on the market.

...not sure where the Rangers will be looking for center, but I like Lombardi (PHX). However with Marleau getting just under $7 million and Plekanec getting $5 million, I'm afraid Lombardi might end up out of the Rangers price range.

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Zipay Live Chat at 1pm

Steve Zipay at Blue Notes will host his weekly live chat today at 1pm. To participate click here. another guy stealing my thunder. I promise you my live chat will be better than Zipay's. Maybe.

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Late Night Live Chat; Draft Party Meetup Reminders

Just a reminder that the late night live chat is tonight starting at 10 p.m. and should run about 30-minutes, unless more time is needed.

The chat will be taking place right here.

Please help spread the word on other Ranger communities you visit (blogs, message boards, Facebook, Twitter, etc.) so we can get as much Blueshirt conversation as possible. Thanks.

Also don't forget about the Rangers Draft Party meetup tomorrow starting at 6:45 pm at The Hill restaurant.

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Ranger Players Actually Receive Awards Votes

Greg Wyshynski at Puck Daddy lists the full voting for the NHL awards which includes numerous Rangers receiving votes.

Marian Gaborik received 2 pts. in Hart voting, Henrik Lundqvist got 6 Vezina pts., Michael Del Zotto received 15 pts. in Calder voting, Ryan Callahan (19 pts.) and Chris Drury (15 pts.) recieved Selke votes, and finally Drury (10 pts.) and Gabork (8 pts.) received Lady Byng consideration.

...what no Adams votes for Torts?

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Werek a Big Goal Scorer

In the final day of the's '20 Prospects in 20 Days' they bring us Ethan Werek...

Gordie Clark, Rangers' Director, Player Personnel, says...

"Without the injury (MCL strain), he easily would have been close to a 40-goal scorer. That's the sort of track he was on, and he's been pretty even throughout. The goals and assists are about even. That's what I like about him."

...this kid sounds like the goal scoring forward the Rangers desperately need. Rangers prospect guru Jess Rubenstein has even called Werek the Rangers best prospect.

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HF's Rangers Draft Preview

Leslie Treff at the Hockey's Future does a Rangers draft preview...

"The Rangers need to remedy a shortage of scoring forwards. After selecting defensemen in the first round of the 2005, 2006 and 2008 NHL Entry Drafts, as well as adding first rounder Ryan McDonagh through a 2009 trade, it is likely that the Rangers will select a forward in the first round of this year's draft. A specific need exists at center, where the team (and system) are short on first and second line center icemen. Although recent graduate Artem Anisimov will likely eventually fill a second-line role and Derek Stepan is projected to be a first to second line forward, there is no purely first-line center in the system. With Evgeny Grachev already playing wing in the AHL, and expected to continue developing in that position, a playmaking center will be at the top of the Rangers list later this week."

In the Hockey's Future's mock draft they have the Rangers taking Jeff Skinner.

...i'd be shocked if the Rangers go any other direction than forward. I'm still on Nino, but I'm worried he won't be around at #10.

...while Skinner is a pure goal scorer, I'm down on him due to his size. Rangers have way too many small forwards already.

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Clark to Do Live Video Chat @ Noon reports that Rangers' Director, Player Personnel Gordie Clark will be doing a live video webchat today at noon to answer fan's questions about this year's draft. To participate click here.

Assistant Director, Player Personnel Jeff Gorton will be live on tomorrow at noon, ET to talk about the prospects who could one day grace The Garden ice.

...Clark is totally stealing my thunder for tonight.

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Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Del Zotto Named to All Rookie Team

Update, 9:34 p.m.:
Here is the official release.

Original Post:
The New York Rangers tweet...

DZ is first #NYR named to #NHL All Rookie Team since Henrik Lundqvist in 2006, first d-man since Brian Leetch in 1989less than a minute ago via mobile web

...Del Zotto was on his way towards rookie of the year to start the season then ran into the proverbial wall but I thought he came back energized after the Olympic break to end the season on a high note. Except for that whole -20 thing.

....i expect a strong follow-up season from Del Zotto next year.

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Byfuglien Headed to Atlanta

TSN reports that the Chicago Blackhawks are in the process of sending Dustin Byfuglien, along with Brent Sopel, Ben Eager and Akim Aliu, to Atlanta in exchange for the 24th overall pick at the 2010 NHL Entry Draft, the 54th pick, Marty Reasoner and Jeremy Morin.

The hold-up on the trade appears to be tied to waiting for league personnel to land in Los Angeles. After that, the trade should be made official.

...the Blackhawks needed to dump salary to get under the cap and this was a big step towards doing that. Wonder who's next. I know a lot of Rangers fans are on Sharp. You guys think Sather is interested?

...while I would have liked for them to go after Byfuglien, I doubt the Rangers were ever in serious talks with the Blackhawks as Chicago wasn't taking back one of the Blueshirts big three contracts and Sather seems very hesitant to give away young talent this offseason.

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Ask Clark a Draft Question is offering Ranger fans an opportunity to ask Gordie Clark, Rangers' Director, Player Personnel, a question regarding Friday's draft.

A select group of the questions will be passed along, and responses will appear live on

To submit a question click here.

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Late Night Live Chat is On for Tomorrow @ 10pm

Ok, I received enough positive feedback from you guys regarding the late night live chat that I decided to go ahead with it.

It will be tomorrow night, Thursday, June 24th starting at 10 p.m. and will probably end up lasting a half hour or so. Unless the response is overwhelming and you guys want to keep going.

No topic is off limits. Draft, free agency, trades, beer, movies, whatever. Should be a fun way to spend the night before the draft.

Hope to see everyone there.

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Sather Readies for Offseason

Jim Cerny at was able to sit down with Glen Sather to discuss his off-season plans...

On giving young players a chance...

“I think the guys are going to come back a lot hungrier next year,” Sather said of his team. “But we’ve got spots that are available. If you look at the organization we’ve got ourselves into a position where we have a lot of young people coming that are going to challenge for jobs.”

On gauging the market for UFAs...

“It’s like a house of cards, someone makes a deal then someone else makes a deal, so it’s kind of hard to predict what’s going to happen (with free agency),” said Sather. “You have to look at the market and see who’s got the money, who’s got the (salary cap) space. And you see teams making some big trades the past few days that takes some of them out of the free agent market. But you know there are going to be some players out there that we’ll have the chance to sign.”

On teams calling about the Rangers top young talent...

“I think our scouting staff has done a great job, the last three years have been real positive,” noted Sather. “(Other teams) keep asking about the same group of guys. You know you’ve got some (good) players when people are asking for them all the time and trying to trade quality players for these kids.”

...Gordie Clark gets all the credit here.

On having a hands-off approach to the draft...

“They’ve seen these players, and they have years of experience watching these kids play, probably 20-30 times each kid before he’s drafted, so they have a real good handle on it,” Sather said of Clark and the organization’s amateur scouting department. “My role is to monitor what is going on, see who’s available and if we can make a deal to move up or down in the draft or trade a draft pick for a player that can play right now.”

...wish he had a hands-off approach to signing free agents as well.

On playing in New York...

“I think we have found through experience that not everyone can play in New York City,” Sather said. “You have to find people that are dedicated and have the strength of character to succeed in New York. Hockey is not a job, it’s a lifestyle. And it takes a lot of work to be successful.”

...unfortunately the Rangers have had way too much experience finding this out.

...not sure why Sather doesn't give interviews like this more often. I enjoy hearing what the GM of the team I'm so passionate about has to say.

...i think he'd have a lot more fans if he came out more often and explained his thinking on moves. Think about it. If he actually said 'this is what I was thinking on Redden and unfortunately it hasn't worked out for us, but we're going to find a way to make it right by either getting Redden to play better, send him to Hartford or find someone willing to take him from us' wouldn't you respect him for at least being up front and honest with the fan base?

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Loving Your Comments; Late Night Live Chat?

I just wanted to send out a big thank you to everyone for all the comments, @replies and e-mails you've been sending recently it has really added to the success of the blog. Please keep them coming whether they're regarding a blog post, giving me new ideas on how to better the blog or just to say hello.

I also encourage anyone who visits the blog purely for the links and my commentary to join in on the conversation. And as always passing along word on the blog is much appreciated.

Please remember anyone interested in meeting up at the Rangers draft party we'll be meeting next to the staircase in the back.

Finally, I've been kicking around the idea of doing a live chat tomorrow night around 10 p.m. for the night owls such as myself. Thought it would be a good time after kids go to bed for us older folks and before the younger readers head out for the night to discuss draft, free agency, etc. Let me know in the comments section if this is something you're into.

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NHL Awards Show Tonight

Lost in all the craziness of yesterday is that the NHL awards show is tonight live from Las Vegas.

The 90-minute show will be shown live on Versus at 7:30 p.m. ET. will have a live stream of the red carpet festivities, which will feature interviews with many of the players in contention for the various NHL Awards.

The Goo Goo Dolls, Hollywood star Mark Wahlberg, CBC's George Stroumboulopoulos, Florida rockers Shinedown, Grammy Award-nominated rapper Snoop Dogg, the world famous Cirque du Soleil, drummer/music producer Travis Barker are among the celebrities scheduled to appear or perform.

For a list of the awards and the nominees click here.

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Prospect Camp Starts Monday reports that the Rangers will hold the 2010 Prospect Development Camp from Monday, June 28, to Friday, July 2, at the Madison Square Garden Training Center.

The camp will bring together several of the team’s top prospects, including Derek Stepan, Chris Kreider, Evgeny Grachev, Ethan Werek, Ryan Bourque and Ryan McDonagh, along with players selected at the NHL Entry Draft on Friday and Saturday in Los Angeles. The camp will also feature recently acquired defenseman prospect Jyri Niemi.

...looking forward to reports and video from camp next week.

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Weise Ready for Next Step

Day 19 of's '20 Prospects in 20 Days' brings us Dale Weise...

Gordie Clark, Rangers' Director, Player Personnel, says...

"He has got that combination of size and skating. The thing we liked about him in junior was his penchant for finishing checks. He still does, and can pop anybody. He plays an all-arond game and plays in all positions."

...Weise is going to get a real opportunity to make the team this year as a fourth line player. Could come down to him, Byers and Boyle for the final roster spot. I'm rooting for either Byers or Weise.

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More Mock Drafts has the Rangers taking RW Brett Connolly at #10 in their most recent mock draft.

...major concerns about Connelly's health (hip), but the kid's got talent.

...if the Rangers draft him, he and Gaborik can sit around and talk hip injuries.

While Wes Goldsteing at CBS Sports feels the Rangers will end up with C Ryan Johnson (think he meant Johansen).

...Johansen needs to add some muscle but i like him if Nino isn't available.

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Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Rangers to Gain $2 Million in Cap Space

TSN reports that the NHL Players' Association has voted for a five percent increase in the salary cap for next season.

The current cap of $56.8 million is expected to rise to roughly $59 million.

...Sather and the Rangers getting a little reprieve from past mistakes that have hamstrung the team financially.

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Lindros Doesn't Get Hall Call

TSN reports that Dino Ciccarelli along with female players Angela James and Cammi Granato were among those elected to the Hall of Fame on Tuesday.

Not selected were Eric Lindros and Joe Nieuwendyk. Both were in their first year of eligibility and seen as possible top candidates.

Also a lot of anger out there that Pat Burns was not selected.

...if Ciccarelli got in there is no reason Lindros should have been left out. the way how busy of an NHL news day was today? Signings, trades, coaching changes, HOF picks, schedule release and draft previews. I can't wait for the draft party so I can just relax with a drink and enjoy.

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Plekanec Re-Signs with Montreal

Bob McKenzie tweets...

Tomas Plekanec has agreed to terms with MTL on a multi-year deal worth an estimated $5 million per year.less than a minute ago via UberTwitter

...$5 million?!??!? Yikes that's expensive. Man, I'm glad the Rangers are in cap hell.

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Rangers Will Not Make Offer to Lisin

Larry Brooks at the New York Post reports the Rangers will not extend a qualifying offer to Enver Lisin, who would have been due a qualifying offer of $829,500.

Lisin, who recorded just 14 points last season, will hit the open market as an unrestricted free agent on July 1.

...this isn't a surprise as Lisin struggled, aided by a foot injury, all season during his first year and now only year with the Rangers.

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Horton Lands in Beantown

TSN reports that the Florda Panthers have sent forwards Nathan Horton and Gregory Campbell to the Boston Bruins for defenceman Dennis Wideman, the 15th overall pick in this year's NHL Entry Draft and a third round pick in 2011.

...i guess Brooks was right.

...with a couple of big names already on the move and the Rangers all quiet on the western front it looks like Sather is sticking to his word of not giving up the future. Which is great to see.

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Renney Named Head Coach in Edmonton

TSN reports that Pat Quinn has stepped down as head coach of the Edmonton Oilers to take an advisory role with the club and former Rangers head coach and current Oilers Assistant Tom Renney will take his place behind the bench.

...i hope Oilers fans don't like scoring. Kidding. Great guy who deserves this second chance.

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Clark, Scouts Get Ready for Big Weekend has a piece on Gordie Clark and the rest of the Ranger scouts getting ready for the draft this weekend...

“We want great hockey players and great people,” explained Clark. “I think we have been able to change the culture of the type of person that we bring in. This is a special place to play, so they should be that special kind of person. I think we’ve kept that philosophy with our draft picks, character and leadership are things we look for, and maybe we’ll take a guy who’s stronger in that department than a guy who might have a bit more skill but far less character.” Gordie we trust.

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NHL Releases Rangers Schedule

Update, 2:13 p.m.:
The Rangers have sent out a release on the schedule.

Original Post:
The NHL just released the 2010-2011 NHL schedule. To check it out click here.

...two away games in New York (Oct. 9th in Buffalo and Oct. 11th on Long Island) to start the season before home opener on Oct. 15th against Maple Leafs.

...Rangers fans will get to see Stanley Cup champs at MSG on November 1st.

...Rangers end the season with three straight home games with the finale against the Devils.

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