Today is the NHL waiver-wire, and all 30 NHL teams will have until three o’clock this afternoon to make an official, cap clean, roster. The Rangers made two moves yesterday waiving both Tim Kennedy, and Todd White. Both forwards gave until noon today to be claimed, or else they remain New York Ranger property (which would not be a problem). However, there is a very good possibility one, or both, of them are claimed by another NHL team. Tim Kennedy is young, gritty, and has the potential of being a pretty solid two-way player. Todd White is the least likely to be claimed off of waivers, but it is definitely a possible.
While the Rangers await the news on whether or not those two were claimed by another team, Glen Sather will be in hot pursuit of a defenseman. He has said that he will “search his options” and “look to the waiver-wire” to improve the New York Rangers before their season starts on Saturday. The Rangers could use a left-handed defenseman, and a defenseman to quarterback the No. 1 power-play unit. He may be able to acquire one today.
I would not be surprised to see him claimed off of waivers. Teams such as the Blue Jackets, Islanders, Predators, and Oilers would be the teams to watch for.
I do not expect him to be claimed, but I have heard the Predators have interest in him, so maybe (hopefully) he is claimed.
What Will the Rangers Do?
The Rangers have three options to work with. They can trade for a player, sign a free agent, or claim a player placed on waivers.
As stated before the Rangers are in search of a defenseman. Names that have come up frequently are Marc-Andre Bergeron (free agent), Sheldon Souray (through trade or re-entry waivers), Andres Lilja (free agent), Ryan Parent (waiver-wire), and Robyn Regher (trade).
First off, I’d say no to Andres Lilja. He is 35 years old, and does not posses any qualities that the Rangers are looking for. Sheldon Souray would be one of the top options, considering that the Rangers have space on the salary cap to acquire him, and he would instantly become the Rangers point man on the power play. Ryan Parent is young, and has the potential to become a solid shut-down defenseman. If the Rangers would like another shut-down defenseman in the making, they may put in a claim for Parent.
Robyn Regher would be an excellent acquisition if Glen Sather can get a trade done to acquire him. Marc-Andre Bergeron may be the best option for the Rangers. He is a solid offensive defenseman, and can score 15-20 goals a season (note, that is better than many forwards do on the Rangers). The only thing that may hold Sather back from attempting to sign him is his lack of defensive talent. He is not very good in his on end, but for $1 million or lower, I’d say it would be a stellar signing.
On offense the Rangers seem set. I would not expect to see the Rangers put out a claim for a forward, though I was hoping they would try to acquire Michael Grabner (who was claimed off waivers by the Islanders yesterday).
Glen Sather will be busy tomorrow, and may make a few moves prior to three o’clock. It is very likely that he makes some type of transaction tomorrow that will benefit the Rangers in some way. If the Rangers make any moves today, I will be reviewing them here sometime around three o’clock.
Enjoy the waiver-wire. The next exciting thing (besides opening night) is March 3rd, the trade deadline.