On September 23, the New York Rangers will hit the ice against the New Jersey Devils for their first pre- season game.
As of right now, they will be going into that game without their young star defender, Marc Staal. Although there is still plenty of time to sign him and make other moves, the Rangers are at a stand- still with Staal and one has to wonder if he is worth it.
If the Rangers sign Staal, their defense is still no better than it was last year and that was like watching a horror movie with a touch of comedy thrown in.
As much as this Ranger team is in dire need for a make- over, when it comes to their defense, I would like to see the Rangers begin some kind of trade talk with the Anaheim Ducks who are currently going through the same problems with Bobby Ryan.
If Marc Staal wants to continue to hold out for more money, especially after the season he had last year, I say trade him. This is a positive move regardless of what the situation is with their defense.
You send Wade Redden down to Hartford, and trade for Bobby Ryan. This opens two defensive spots for minor league players to show what they have. Think this through, how much will Staal improve this defense? Here is one better, how much did Staal improve the defense last year? They were pretty horrid and nothing will change that even with Staal this year.
With Bobby Ryan you added at least 30 goals and a player who plays a solid defensive game and a physical one to boot. He has improved every year he has played and this kid will just get better and better.
We need to come to term with the facts of who the Rangers have on this team and as of right now, this defense is the same as last year. It is worse without Staal, but even with him, they stunk last year.
Marc Staal will never get you 30 goals and will be lucky if he even get you 30 points for that matter. Defensively it will not make a difference; they will still not be good enough. In that case, better the offense; go after a player like Ryan who is still available.
With or without Staal Lundqvist and Biron will have their work cut out for them again this year and will have to be on top of their game. The Rangers will indeed have a much better chance of out- scoring their opponents with Ryan then without him.
If you are not going to shut them down with your defense then you must out score them with your offense and that is the problem this Ranger team is facing right now. They will not shut anyone down, and their offense is still questionable.
Maybe Bobby Ryan wants the change and is just waiting for a team to make him an offer. Maybe the same goes for Staal. They might be looking at this as, "Hey, we basically have the same team as last year and that wasn’t too good." Let me see if I can go someplace else.
It does not have to be Ryan, what about Sam Gagner who had an even better season then Tim Kennedy last year. Peter Mueller is still available as well. Other then Ryan, all these players will come even cheaper and they can acquire a pick or two as well.
Twenty three days for pre-season, it still is three weeks away, but those three weeks will come quickly.
Bobby Ryan in blue would be an awesome thing to see!