Sunday, May 10, 2009

Food For Thought

After what has been a very interesting and entertaining playoffs involving Ranger prospects we get a chance to catch our breath before the Memorial Cup begins. It gives us a chance to take a look at the hockey world and sadly it seems the thought patterns of those with idea about changes to the Rangers.

The 2009 Entry Draft

People who either do not follow the Rangers or just do not pay attention to Ranger needs think they can guess what the Rangers do. In most cases they fail badly and have the Rangers drafting players who would not improve the team.

Just about every Ranger fan would agree that the primary need is going to be a scoring winger with size. A winger who has some grit to his game and a willingness to get his hands dirty in order to get the job done.

They do not need any more 5'11 forwards or offensive minded defensemen who's best skill is that they can skate. It has been very interesting to see all these places who say the Rangers will be selecting Louis Leblanc of Omaha in the USHL or John Moore of Chicago in the USHL.

Both are talented players but do not fit what the Rangers under Tortorella are going to be trying to accomplish. The Rangers unless the Ducks advance to the Western Conference finals will pick 19th and that is going to be a bad spot for the Rangers.

Forget Zach Kassian as while we will be the first to tell you he would be the perfect pick, Kassian will be long gone by the time the Rangers pick at 19. Our second choice Carter Ashton we pretty much now know that he too will be gone as his stock is rising as we speak.

That will leave Chris Kreider who is going to attend Boston College in 2010 or a Drew Shore reportedly headed to Denver University next year as the top choices. The bad news is that neither are worthy of going at 19 but later in the first round.

Drew Shore would be a very interesting choice given that his CHL rights belong to the Chilliwack Bruins who Glen Sather just so happens to own a piece of. Shore has repeatedly said he was going to attend Denver and is not interested in the WHL.

That might change when Shore starts to fall out of the first round when teams do not want to wait 4 years for him. The smart Ranger fan is seeing where we are going here which is that the Rangers need to seriously consider looking to drop down in the first round and pick up at least an extra 2nd round pick.

Save Your Money

We wanted to repeat something we said before; all those sites that say that they can give you the best draft coverage for a price pass on them. There are a ton of places where you can get just about the same information for nothing.

TSN will have free coverage, the NHL website will offer you free coverage, we will offer you free coverage and so will many others. If you are going to spend money then we do suggest that McKeens or Red Line Report are places that will give you your money's worth.

Playing GM

It is almost an annual game as people will spend the entire season complaining about the moves made by the Rangers but as soon as the season is over will suggest moves that are equally as bad or worse than what Glen Sather has done.

It is beyond comical that people think that other NHL GMs are going to do Glen Sather any favors and rescue him from his own mistakes. Even Sather's own buddy Brian Burke crowed about getting a 2nd round pick for Antropov when he was not worth it.

So if I am an NHL GM then why in the world would I want to take Scott Gomez off your hands after the season he just had? Why would I want that contract either? You expect me to risk my own career so you can get rid of a problem.

Sorry not a chance, if you want me to take Gomez then I want something of real value from you. I want a player who I know for sure is going to help me but I also want you to take away my own garbage in return.

Stop thinking that your players are worth more than mine, they are not. Any trade needs to be one where we both walk away thinking we got a good deal not you thinking you fleeced me.

The "Instant Fix"

OK you cleared cap space by Naslund retiring, you got more opened up by getting rid of Redden and Gomez so what do you do? Why you go right back out and make the same mistakes that you have been making since 1995.

You think that tossing money and then more money is going to fix your problems. Well answer this one then: How many times has it worked since 1995? How many Cups or Cup Finals have you gotten to play for?

Exactly why it is way past time to stop this annual pissing away of money that the Rangers do and man it up to fix this franchise once and for all. There is an ugly truth that Ranger fans do not want to admit to and that is for all their talk about willing to rebuild they are not willing to do that.

After 7 years without the playoffs; Ranger fan are scared to death to miss the playoffs once again. They hide behind "once the playoffs start anything can happen", that it is a great learning experience for the young players or "this team can win"

Truth is that the Rangers did not deserve to make the playoffs to begin with, that just like the early season record the 3-1 lead was built on the back of Henrik Lundqvist. This was a bad team and it showed.

So now Ranger fans want to try a new "Instant Fix", they want to see Gaborik or Havalat signed, maybe a trade for Ilya Kovalchuk as well. The one area that those making these kinds of "solutions" is that just like Sather they are throwing money at a problem and hoping it will finally work.

The same folks making these suggestions are also the same ones who cheered loudly when Drury and Gomez were signed. Here is what money does not buy; chemistry as in team chemistry.

It is time to just say no, time to suck it up and do what other teams do which is develop their own core players to become contenders THEN use free agents and/or trades like Detroit does to add the finishing pieces.

Develop the core first and build towards being a Cup Contender not just a playoff contender.

Until the Rangers stop trying the "instant fix" then do not expect a serious cup contender from the Rangers.

Band-Aids only work for so long.


Anonymous said...

Nice piece Jess;

I think they can add one mid level scorer like a Cole or Penner via trade to get some size and then just leave it alone. Penner is indeed an underachiever but him for Rozi straight up could work and save a little cap room. A Torts conditioning camp will work wonders for him.

They need to save $ to resign Staal Girardi after next year.

Th main part of this team should be Henrik/Dubi/Cally/Staal/Girardi/Anisimov/Korpi/Sauer/Gilroy/Owens/Byers with Grachev/Weisse/Del Z and eventually Hagelin joinnig the mix.

A UFA is like whip cream or sugar in coffee, not the main ingredient.

Ryan McFadden - The Manic Ranger said...

right on Jess. Great post

BlissWrite said...

I hate blogger! I just wrote a response and it ended up on an old post about Jessiman last summer.

Jess Rubenstein said...


I have no idea how that happened, it will be interesting to see how Drew Shore does at the combine.

I just do not see it him moving up to 19 so I would like to see the Rangers move down if that is their target.

I see 2 kids who will be in the 2nd round that are going to fly under the radar and become excellent NHL players (sorry no names just yet)

BlissWrite said...

What I was going to say about Drew Shore is that he is the real deal and will be a surefire NHL player. While I don't think he is a sniper like Drayson Bowman will be (next year), Shore has a work ethic that rivals most professionals. I've worked with his three younger brothers and they all have the same skills and work ethic (Nick, also drafted by Chiliwack) is already on the Under 17 team).

He will definitely play for Denver. His dream has always been to play for the Pioneers. His parents also take academics very seriously and this kid will get a degree even if he has to finish it during his summers as a pro.

The only reason I question whether the Rangers have interest in him is that they have Stepan, who has a similar career path in the college route and they are the same position and body type.

Jess Rubenstein said...


The same logic applied is simple, if Shore is the best player when the Rangers draft then that is who they will take.

It is why you have seen so many defensemen selected in recent years.

I also think that Stepan is going to be more playmaker at the NHL than goal scorer whereas Shore more goal scorer as he fills out.

In that case you do have 2 different players