Can someone please let me know how exactly one is supposed to respond to the moves or non-moves the Rangers made on the opening day of free agency? In typical fashion what the Rangers did or did not do have as they always do clearly divided the Ranger fans.
Myself to be honest I am left trying to understand what the Rangers did because other than the signing of Wade Redden and resigning Vally to be Henrik's backup the rest of the Ranger moves made no sense at all.
Signing Redden was not the player I wanted to see signed as the leader of the Ranger defense but for the price and skill level it is hard to complain. Redden is a 2 way defender maybe not the hard core defender I still feel the Rangers need but he is an improvement over Michal Rozsival which leads me to the next part.
Why resign Rozsival for the price after you just signed Redden? Sorry but paying 5 million a year for your 2nd pair defender who's defense at times is very weak makes zero sense. Giving him a 4 year contract for 5 million a season makes even less sense.
Once Redden was signed then the need for Rozsival at 5 million disappears when the money could be better spent elsewhere. Sorry I just do not see the need here as the Rangers had more options than this one for defense.
I can not help but feel that the signing of Rozsival was to make Jagr happy and if that is the case then it reminds me of 1997 when the Rangers signed Keane and Skrudland to ease the workload of Mark Messier only to let Messier walk.
Yes Rozsival put up decent numbers last season but not the kind of numbers for the guy who was the 23rd leading scorer among the defensemen (not the entire NHL just the defensemen) . If they had said a raise to 3 million then I could live with this signing but no way for 5 million.
Steve Valiquette on the other hand they may not have disclosed what he signed for but if it was to 1 million (almost doubling his salary) then by all means good move. Vally made me eat a lot of words last season, words I was very happy to eat them.
At one time Vally was out playing Henrik Lundqvist when Henrik was struggling big time. Vally though did exactly what you ask from your backup goalie which is get your starter some rest while giving your team a chance to win. Vally did that and more.
Ah heck how could not like a guy who shut out the Flyers twice during the season? It was more than that as Vally was a great presence in the locker room and one day when someone realizes that goalies deserve to wear a letter on their uniforms that you realize that Vally was a true team leader in more ways that what little he gets paid.
The Rangers also added Aaron Voros who either ran out of gas at the end of the season for the Wild or got warm enough to attract some attention. On can say that his signing means the end for Ryan Hollweg as a Ranger because to play for the Wild you play defense or sit in the press box.
On the other hand the signing of Patrick Rissmiller makes you wonder as well because the Sharks are considered the home team where I live so I see a lot of their games and wonder was I the only one who watched him play? He is huge, he hits but is not what one considers a fierce body checker.
Rissmiller has a ton of size at 6'4 but will not fight and 8 goals in 79 games is nothing to get excited about. If the Rangers are using the twin signings as a way to cushion the blow over not signing Sean Avery then boy these are not the right answers.
If you have read what I have said over at the Blueshirt Bulletin then I am the last person who one can call a member of the Sean Avery fan club. That said then if the Rangers think putting these 2 together as a replacement for Avery and they are totally nuts.
Give me Sean Avery any day over these 2 in a heartbeat (and again look who is saying this so realize the message being sent) and ask what are the Rangers thinking.
Dubi at the Blueshirt Bulletin thinks the Rangers have about 7 million in cap space left (add 3 more if they dump Blackman) to spend. When it comes to cap stuff I will always take Dubi's math over anyone else's.
Dubi being right means the Rangers are praying that they can sign Jagr to a bonus filled contract while still being able to still add more players. I have to hope that those scenarios are correct because if not then the Rangers wasted some serious cap room here.
They say that tomorrow is another day so one has to wonder how the Rangers will spend the remaining cap room.
Get your tickets (European that is)
Our friends over in Europe with both the IIHF and Victoria Cup announced that tickets for the Victoria Cup are going on sale on Thursday. Hopefully the free agent stuff will die down so we can tell you about how to get your tickets
I hope that by then things will go back to normal as we are wanting to return back to prospect coverage as we are working on interviews with Swift Current (Dale Wiese) and Owen Sound (Micheal Del Zotto) for you
4 hours ago