Too much down time appears to be fueling the imagination of too many people and so it is time to address some of the rumors that have been making the rounds. First off is this one from last Sunday's Slapshots (Larry Brooks)
Rangers, who conducted organizational meetings last week, are believed keenly interested in signing Ryan McDonagh, whose rights they acquired from Montreal in the Scott Gomez deal, but the Wisconsin defenseman has a fair amount of leverage as he awaits an offer.
McDonagh, who turns 21 next month, would play his senior year for the Badgers if he does not turn pro. If he remains unsigned through next year, McDonagh would become an unrestricted free agent as of Aug. 15, 2011.
Chances are, then, if the 6-foot-1, 215-pound McDonagh, who is regarded as a proficient, stay-at-home type physically ready for the NHL, does not sign this summer, he will not sign at all with the Blueshirts.
And though it would seem necessary for Sather to offer the Entry Level max, we're hearing McDonagh will make his decision based less on the contract and more on his perception of the Rangers' program.
First off the only way Larry Brooks would even know who Ryan McDonagh is would be if he carried a picture around or someone introduced him to McDonagh. Yet here he is posting a rumor about another Wisconsin Badger that does more to harm McDonagh's standing with Ranger fans than it deals with actual fact.
I would love to hear who he got this information from because none of my sources have said this and nor has one of the top Badger blogs out there Sixty Minutes No Alibis No Regrets said a word. In fact the very last word I have remains that McDonagh wants to become a Ranger and until McDonagh himself comes out says otherwise dismiss this one.
Oh and I think Brooks would be happy to know that Derek Stepan got a great laugh out of reading Brook's other Badger rumor that had Stepan leaving Wisconsin for Calgary of the WHL. That would make Brooks 0 for 2 when it comes to Badger info.
But what really gets me is how Brooks who at the moment is still at odds with John Tortorella can be viewed as a source of credible information about Ranger prospects. The 2 people who would talk about Ranger prospects would be Jim Schoenfeld and Gordie Clark and Schoeny who is good friends with Tortorella is not about to do Brooks any favors.
It is not a Ranger scout because it has been a team policy for years not to have the scouts speak about Ranger prospects. The only ones who can or will are Clark, Schoenfeld and Jeff Gorton and they will limit what they say about a prospect.
The Brook's rumor in turn led to this gem found at ESPN rumor central that had McDonagh not wanting to play for Tortorella because of the way Tortorella treated Matt Gilroy. This one is one of the bigger pieces of garbage out there as McDonagh hardly has time to follow the Rangers in depth living in Wisconsin.
The average day for a college hockey player is get up at 7-7:30, attend the breakfast hall, attend classes from 8-1, team practice for a couple of hours, then workouts, team dinner and then study hall. McDonagh who has 2 WCHA All-Academic awards more than likely puts in even more study time than that.
Most Ranger games are played from 5-8 Wisconsin time when the players are busy with workouts and on the weekends; Wisconsin is playing at the same time the Rangers are. McDonagh might catch the odd Sunday game or two but being in Wisconsin, the Badgers have a better chance of following the Minnesota Wild or Detroit Red Wings than they do the Rangers.
My last rumor involves Prospect Park as I have gotten several people wondering why Kevin Baumer has been writing about the prospects at the Blueshirt Bulletin. No I am not leaving the Blueshirt Bulletin as Kevin is interning there this summer.
It is part of Dan's efforts to greatly increase the amount of website content for the Blueshirt Bulletin. I have known Kevin for about a year now and when he told me that he was applying to the Blueshirt Bulletin as an intern; I got a hold of Dan and begged him to hire Kevin.
Kevin is a very thoughtful detail writer who has a promising future but his presence now is doing several things for me; freeing me to work on the 2010 draft while able to cover the 3 CHL finals, getting me some badly needed days off after this past season and making sure we get as much prospect info out there as possible.
Any worries about my leaving the Blueshirt Bulletin are very untrue as in the very next issue will be my interviews with Derek Stepan and Chris Krieder.
Ranger fans have way too much free time on their hands these days but really folks relax and calm down as the Rangers themselves are still putting together their plans for the off-season.
3 hours ago