Considering the inconsistent season we've seen so far, and Glen Sather's track record not to stand pat, it's obvious that this summer, or even beforehand, will feature the Rangers making a small plethora of deals. Here are a few moves just off the top of my head that I feel could certainly occur:
No. 5 The Signing of Mike Komisarek.
See above. Komisarek brings to the table EXACTLY what we need; toughness, defensive ability, and a knack for not being out of position. He is what Ranger fans would love Marc Staal to become. With the probable non-resignings of Dmitri Kalinin and Paul Mara, signing Komisarek would still leave a spot open for either Potter or Sanguinetti.
Also... did you know that out of all the Ranger players and prospects...in all leagues...no one has a worse plus/minus than Bobby Sanguinetti (-13)! I have some serious questions as per his ability to step immediately into our lineup and not be a major liability. It would be great to have a solid defensive stalwart...and someone who actually hits.
No. 4 The Trading of Scott Gomez or Michal Roszival.
It's bound to happen. And if it doesn't, the chances of us doing much of anything is nil. For my scenario that's above, to occur, it'd have to happen. We don't need both Roszival and Redden... and Redden has a no trade. Sangs and/or Del Zotto are probably on their way, and both have ridiculous offensive potential.
Gomez is quite expendable as well. With Korpedo, who can play center, and our next obvious prospect callup being Artem Anisimov, we have the ability to slide either one in there to replace him. It's not as if Gomez is making any kind of offensive impact.
You trade either one of them for a $2 - $3 million a year player in the final year of his salary, and a solid prospect, and it's a decent move. We need some salary flexibility, and at the moment, we have zero.
No. 3 The Reacquisition of Sean Avery.
I'm definitely not sure how I feel about this one. I will agree with most that Avery was a gigantic catalyst for us the past year and a half. He brought something to New York that very few players have. However, since his departure, all Rangers in the locker room have talked about the greatness of the room. And of course, when he came back, Avery had an on ice confrontation with former line mate Brandon Dubinsky, and off ice incidents with both Steve Valiquette, and out of all people, John Giannone.
First there was talk of Roszival for Avery... and that's quieted. Now possibly, Avery's going to be released and he'll sign with the Rangers for the minimum. First of all, if this did occur at all, into which spot does he go? Out of these wingers: Naslund, Cally, Dawes, Korpedo, Prucha, and Zherdev, who sits? What about our other two wings, Voros and Fritsche? I've always also thought that Sjostrom had second or third line potential.
Who goes to accomodate Avery? I could see Sather doing something to make this work (probable demotion of Korpikoski, which would be a serious shame), but I'm not sure if he SHOULD do anything to get this to happen. We might be better off without him, considering there's no more Shanny to keep him quiet.
No. 2 The Firing of Tom Renney.
Somedays I think he deserves it, and others I don't. I'll say this against him; the last 2 years, his teams have been wildly inconsistent. There are times that the team looks unbeatable (think a majority of the game in San Jose), and other games where we look as if we couldn't care less. That's not the sign of talent, that's the sign of a lack of fire in that dressing room. It's Renney's responsibility to keep that fire lit.
However, in his defense...bar none, he's the best coach we've had since Mike Keenan. Every year he's been our coach we've been in playoff contention, and for all his faults, I can't think of another Ranger coach who's allowed so much youth to permeate into the lineup. Honestly though, another second round exit, or worse, might spell his demise.
No. 1 The Acquisition of Either Marian Gaborik, Ilya Kovalchuk, or Henrik Zetterberg.
Watching the game with my dad the other night, he said to me "wow, we really don't have any "names" on our team." I said that wasn't true, and that Lundqvist is a big name goaltender, as well as Naslund, being a decent long time goal scorer. However though... he was right. Lundqvist is one of our own draft picks, and Naslund is four or five years past his prime. We honestly don't have a guy who can bring fans out in droves for away games.
Jagr and Shanny did that. Bure and Lindros did that. Esposito and Larouche did that. Guy Lafleur. Andy Bathgate. We've always been a team that had a few monster superstars. Am I happy that we dont' seem that way anymore? Absolutely. I don't feel that works any longer. I'm pretty sure that Sather disagrees with me. On his watch, we've acquired Alex Kovalev (reacquired actually), Theo Fleury, A knee-less Pavel Bure, and a dilapidated Eric Lindros.
It's in Sather to grab the big name ticket. Two summers ago, didn't he sign the two top name centers (both of which are honestly second line centers)? I'm almost guaranteeing that the Rangers sign one of the three guys available above.
My feeling would point to Kovalchuk, considering the brisk turn favoring Russians in our system (Gratchev, Anisimov, and Zherdev). However, as said before, who goes to get one of those guys in? You'd almost certainly have to trade one of our big name defenseman (as talked about above), extras like Fritsche and Voros, and probably even Gomez.
Any one of those three would be asking for at minimum, $6 - $7 million. Considering his hardware, Zetterberg could probably get away with $8 million. Sather's balls are as big as the Cup itself...don't put anything past him.
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