Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Message received loud and clear

There's a reason why sometimes listening to what is not said is more important than listening to what is said especially when it comes to New York Rangers. Nobody took me seriously when I said I was taking Monday off because I knew there was going to be some very disappointed people at 3:01 PM Eastern time.

The moment people started throwing the names of the Ranger's top prospects out there as part of any Rick Nash trade that there was no way that trade was going to happen. I'm not trying to be a smartass or disrespectful to anybody but there are times when people just don't listen.

Still the most important thing is to listen to what Glen Sather is saying here because if you don't then you will make the same mistakes that the rumor makers did.

From the New York Post

“[Prices] seemed very high. I wasn’t going to dismantle any of the pieces out of our organization. We’re not ready to do anything like that.

To me when I see Glen Sather using the word "dismantle" then I am wondering if he is remembering what kind of shape the Ranger franchise was in when he took over? There's a double edged's argument regarding Glen Sather here as on one hand on his next birthday Glen Sather will be 69 so you wonder if perhaps he would have gone for the quick fix if not for the asking price that Columbus reportedly wanted.

Or maybe Glen Sather did not want to risk blowing up something that is taken four years to build which is the Ranger prospect pool. On that point, I for one cannot blame Sather at all because I do know from first-hand experience what the Ranger prospect pool once looked like and it was horrible.

That is why if you have been listening these days to the Rangers then the words "plan" and "system" would be coming up a lot in any of the discussions. The days when the Rangers sell their soul on a gamble are over and that's perhaps the biggest reason why the Rangers did not make the trade for Rick Nash.

Besides asking for the Rangers best prospects; the one question that the Rangers really had to answer was could Rick Nash fit into what the Rangers were trying to do and how fast could he do it? In many ways the struggles that Marion Gaborik had last season as well as some of the struggles that Brad Richards is going these days may have given the Rangers pause in adding a Rick Nash today.

Think about it as if you stand pat and things fall apart then you still have a chance at trading for Rick Nash after the season. Only this time he has a training camp and preseason to learn the system not to mention the Rangers can always claim that this is all part of "the rebuilding process."

After all is extremely unlikely that any of us had the faintest hope of waking up on February 28, 2012 with the New York Rangers having the second best record in the NHL back in the summer now did we? Sorry if you do wish to claim that statement don't expect many of us to take you seriously.

There were other things to consider to and one of them is something that many Ranger fan may not like acknowledging which is that over time we all change and we all hopefully learn from our mistakes right? Does anyone wish to consider the possibility that perhaps even Glen Sather could change and learn from his own mistakes?

Unlike us, we don't have an entire fan base chanting for us to be fired. It's quite possible that Glen Sather learned the hard way that "if I had the money that (Neil Smith) had to spend that I would win the cup every year" was not true.

The Glen Sather that has been portrayed at times in the media and by fans and even by yours truly is not the same Glen Sather who's running the New York Rangers today. Here is a man who once was the general manager/coach of an NHL dynasty called the Edmonton Oilers.

But that was a generation ago and many have forgotten or even worse for Sather, were not even born when that took place. The Glen Sather they knew was the one who could not solve what was wrong with the Rangers. One has to wonder if not for the lockout what would have been Glen Sather's legacy as general manager of the New York Rangers?

Glen Sather remains a sore subject for many a Ranger fan and for the most part Ranger fans are giving the credit for the Ranger turn around to John Tortorella and Gordie Clark but what about the guy who hired both? Matter of fact there are plenty of things that Glen Sather actually deserves credit for.

It was Glen Sather who listened to Tom Renney and to Gordie Clark and supported the changes to the Rangers scouting and player development programs. It was Glen Sather who authorized hiring your scouts bringing in specialists to handle strength and conditioning or nutrition or for several Rangers, a skating coach.

Cue John Tortorella via Andrew Gross and his Ranger Rants

“I like the hockey club, I told you guys all year long, I like the hockey club. We didn’t lose any kids today, which I think is very important. I think we’re going in the right direction but we’re still in the process.

Remember those words for whatever point the Rangers season ends. If they win the cup then awesome give Tortorella coach of the year and fat new contract. If they don't then you will hear something like "I think we’re going in the right direction but we’re still in the process."

But you have to listen to what they're saying.

Who is coming?

Give Glen Sather and "A" for effort but check his nose to see how much it may have grown. Sather has basically committed the team to signing Chris Kreider as soon as Boston College's season ends.

What I don't expect is for the Rangers to use a year of Kreider's entry level contract on just the playoffs because its way too risky if he's not ready. Instead expect Kreider to be signed to an ATO (amateur tryout contract) and as Carl Hagelin did last season play in the AHL playoffs with the Whale.

Regular readers here should know that the Rangers will get either Andrew Yogan and Peter Ceresnak or Christian Thomas available for the CT Whale on March 20 as one of their teams is not expected to make the OHL playoffs. Bet on Yogan playing first as he is fighting for the Ranger contract and doesn't hurt that he is 6 foot three.

Depending on the outcome of this weekend's games 2007 seventh round pick Danny Hobbs might be available but I'm not sure the Rangers will sign him as he didn't have the best of seasons due to nagging injuries. An ATO won't hurt but I don't have NHL expectations for Hobbs at all.

Other than that I don't see Ranger draft picks making early exits as this year several of them are playing on championship level teams. Dylan McIlrath is a possibility but I don't think he'll be available until after the regular season is over.

There are some interesting possibilities in the college ranks as free agents which has been the main route the Rangers are gone for free agents as they are older and more mature.

(Sather – New York Rangers)


Kmp said...

Have to admit I'm disappointed they didn't get Nash. Gabby's contract expires in 2 years, so does Hank's. CBA amnesty would finally rid them of Reddens contract.The only Rfas they have to deal with this year is MDZ and Stralman, Ufas other than Prust can all be replaced.

If the reports are accurate they made CBJ an offer that was hard to turn down. Dubinsky, Erixon, Miller (who I don't want to see go)Thomas and a first.

Don't blame Slats for not giving up Dubi, McD (no way) or MDZ (yes), Stepan (no) or Hagelin (no), Krieder (yes-still think Miller will be a better player) and a 1st. Would be overkill. Dubi, Mdz, Krieder and 1st would be alot, but I could live with it.

The downside to pulling off the trade Cally goes to 3rd line RW? Nash could always turn into Yashin (doubt it though).

Prospect Park said...

Sorry but for someone like myself the trade would be as bad as the Norstrom and Middleton trade.

Sorry maybe you might be able to live with giving up Kreider. MDZ and a 1st but the NYR could not.

Kreider is the future of the NYR and with him it makes the selections of Stepan and Miller that much better.

Get rid of MDZ and might as well dump McIlrath who was drafted with the intent of becoming his partner.

Kalel9 said...

Kreider is the real deal. The pro game is much better suited for him than the system at BC. He has been awesome against the best players in his age group in international competition. He's everything the Rangers are looking for, and unlike Jess, I think we will see him this year. Torts have been trying to get him on the big team since they got him! The Rangers LOVE this player.

That's not a knock on Miller, either. He's gonna be very good. The Rangers should just be in no rush to trade any of them, they are a little ahead of schedule right now.

Wen C said...

I'm giving props to Slats for not gutting everythign to bring in Nash. They rebuiltd the right way (homegrown talent, add a few free agents, play a gritty team game) and they're second in the league? Who can ask for more.

If there's a possibility to add Parise in the off season, think of next year's team as Hank is hitting his prime,
Line 1. Steph, Kreider, Gabby,
Line 2. Parise, Richards, Cally,
Line 3. Dubby, Artie, Haglen
Line 4. Boyle, Prust, Mitchel/ Rupp

D1. Staal, Girardi
D2. McDonaugh Sauer
D3. MDZ, Erikson/ vet

That's a team that I'd have high expectations in the next two years.