Grades for New York Rangers' Free-Agency Signings So Far

Jeremy Fuchs@@jaf78Correspondent IIIJuly 9, 2014

Grades for New York Rangers' Free-Agency Signings So Far

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    Marcio Jose Sanchez/Associated Press

    The New York Rangers didn't go crazy during free agency, making only one real "splash."

    They did, however, sign five players who have a chance of contributing next season.

    Did the Rangers spend their money wisely? Should they have spent it elsewhere?

    We looked at the signings and assigned a grade to each. They are arranged in order of descending importance to the team next year.

    How did the Rangers fare? Read on to find out. 

Dan Boyle: A+

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    Jae C. Hong/Associated Press

    Dan Boyle signed a two-year, $9 million deal with the Rangers, according to CapGeek.

    He essentially replaces Anton Stralman, who received a five-year, $22.5 million contract from Tampa Bay, also per CapGeek. They have the same cap hit.

    So was it worth it?

    Boyle had 12 goals and 24 assists last year with San Jose, with 18 of those points coming on the man-advantage. He averaged 21 minutes of ice time.

    Stralman had one goal and 12 assists last season, while averaging 19 minutes of ice time.

    Stralman, in general, had better advanced numbers during the regular season, albeit only slightly better. He has better possession numbers, all while playing the same type of competition, per ExtraSkater.

    In the postseason, where Stralman played particularly well, it was actually Boyle who outplayed him. Granted, Boyle played seven games, while Stralman played 25.

    But it is Boyle who had better possession numbers, per ExtraSkater.

    Despite Stralman's good year, this will be the first time he plays under a long contract with big money. Boyle is a veteran with plenty of playoff experience and a track record of success.

    Between the fact that Boyle played about as well as Stralman did last year, plus his expected contributions on the man-advantage, this was a home run signing for the Rangers. It gets a grade of A+.

Tanner Glass: D

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    Jay LaPrete/Associated Press

    Tanner Glass is not a bad player.

    But is he better than Derek Dorsett?

    I'm not sure. 

    Glass signed a three-year, $1.45 million deal with the Rangers, as per CapGeek. Dorsett, who the Rangers traded to Vancouver, has one year and a $1.66 million cap hit, also per CapGeek. Glass will replace Dorsett on the fourth line. 

    Glass scored four goals and had nine assists with the Pittsburgh Penguins last year. Dorsett had four goals and four points with the Rangers.

    But the advanced numbers really tell the tale. Dorsett has far better possession numbers, and he has better numbers in nearly every advanced category, as per ExtraSkater

    Was it worth the extra $200,000 or so in savings?

    I don't think so.

    This signing gets a grade of a D. 

Matt Hunwick: B+

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    Jeff Gross/Getty Images

    Matt Hunwick signed a one-year, $600,000 deal with the Rangers, as per CapGeek.

    Last season, Hunwick played just one game with the Colorado Avalanche, spending most of the season with Lake Erie of the AHL, where he scored 10 goals and had 21 assists in 52 games.

    Hunwick, who had some decent seasons with the Boston Bruins a few years back, likely slides in as the seventh defenseman.

    He's a veteran who can do a decent job in a pinch. Will he turn heads? No. But there are worse depth defenseman out there.

    It's a solid, no-frills signing. He earns a grade of a B+. 

Mike Kostka: B

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    Patrick McDermott/Getty Images

    Mike Kostka signed a one-year, $650,000 deal with the Rangers, according to CapGeek.

    The defenseman had four goals and 11 assists in 28 games between the Chicago Blackhawks and the Tampa Bay Lightning. He added two assists in three games in the postseason with the Bolts.

    Kostka has decent advanced numbers, as per Extra Skater, but that's mostly because teams shield him by not starting him in the defensive zone.

    He's a depth defenseman, a puck-mover who essentially replaces Raphael Diaz. 

    In my book, he's the eighth defenseman, who probably won't see too much time, unless there is an injury.

    Not a bad depth signing, but that's what it is. He gets a grade of a B. 

Chris Mueller: C

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    Joe Sargent/Getty Images

    Chris Mueller signed a one-year, $600,000 deal with the Rangers, according to CapGeek.

    The 28-year-old pivot last played with the Dallas Stars, failing to notch a point in 13 games between the regular season and postseason.

    He dominated in the AHL, however, scoring 25 goals and adding 32 assists in 60 games.

    At best, Mueller is a depth center who, if he impresses in camp, could make the team.

    Most likely, though, he spends his time in Hartford. 

    The Rangers are hoping he contributes, but he's mostly depth.

    Because of that, this signing recieves a grade of: C