Top 10 Worst Glen Sather Moves of the Past Decade

Matthew CalamiaCorrespondent IDecember 23, 2009

MONTREAL, QC - JUNE 27:  General Manager and President Glen Sather of the New York Rangers works the phones during the 2009 NHL Entry Draft at the Bell Centre on June 27, 2009 in Montreal, Quebec, Canada.  (Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)
Bruce Bennett/Getty Images

When referring to the payroll the New York Rangers had, a wise man once said, "If I had their payroll, my team would never lose." That wise man was Glen Sather. 

Sather took over as President and GM in 2000 and missed the playoffs the first four seasons. Since the lockout, they've made the playoffs each season but have not gotten passed the second round.

Over the past decade, Ranger fans have seen Slats destroy their organization, which has made them a laughingstock in the NHL

These are the top 10 worst trades, signings, and draft picks made by Glen Sather since he left oil country in exchange for the bright lights of the Big Apple.

10. With the exception of Tom Renney, no Ranger coach—including Sather himself—has a winning record behind the bench this decade. From 2000-2004, Ron Low, Bryan Trottier and Sather combined to win 123 games. Tom Renney was the only man to find success, leading the team to the postseason in each of his three full seasons from 2005-08 before being fired in Feb. 2009.

John Tortorella was able to get his team into the playoffs, picking up where Renney left off. He managed to blow a 3-1 on the heavy favorite Washington Capitals.

In total, the Rangers managed two series wins for 14 total postseason wins over the past decade. 

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9. If there is one area Sather has had success in, it would be drafting. Unfortunately, the best draft class of this decade, 2003, was also one in which he wasted a pick on Hugh Jessiman.

Of the 30 players selected in Round One, which includes Zach Parise, Ryan Getzlaf, and Mike Richards, all players selected after the Rangers, Jessiman has the unfortunate title of being the ONLY player to never dress for an NHL game. Of those 30 players, 10 have become All-stars and four have Stanley Cup championships.

8. The signing of Scott Gomez came on the same day as the signing of another player deeper down on this list. Some thought giving the Alaskan-born ex-Devil a seven year contract with $7M per was a little steep, but Ranger fans everywhere rejoiced, thinking of the numbers Gomez and Ranger captain Jaromir Jagr would put up for years to come.

Unfortunately, neither could play with each other, and Gomez had two lack-luster seasons on Broadway, finishing with 128 points. He was dealt to Montreal in exchange for Chris Higgins and other minor league prospects this past offseason in order to free up space for right wing free agent Marian Gaborik.

7. There seems to be a re- occurring trend when the Rangers sign ex-Devils to come play in New York, as was the case in the summer of 2002, when center Bobby Holik signed a five-year, $45 million contract with the Rangers.

At the time, this seemed like a good signing. Holik played a gritty, smash-mouthed style of hockey during a time when the Rangers lacked at center.

Unfortunately, the Rangers trusted him to center their scoring line. It was not to be. Holik lasted just two seasons with the Rangers, finishing with 91 points before being bought out after the 2004 NHL Lockout.

6. July 1, 2007 made Rangers fans grin from ear to ear after signing two high-profile centers. The following season, when the Rangers inked two high-profile defensemen, they wanted Sather's head on a pole.

That day, he gave a four-year, $20 million contract extension to underachieving, non- physical player Michael Rozsival. The thought of seeing No. 3 man the blue-line another four years on a power-play from hell made fans sick. They're still sick.

5. The signing of Darius Kasparitus is another head scratcher. He was known throughout the league as a tough, in your face defenseman who had killed the Rangers throughout most of his career. Sather must have thought, "If I can't beat, I'll buy him." And that's just what he did on the same day he brought Mr. Holik to town.

Sather gave Kaspar a six-year, $25 million contract with an extra $1 million per year just for signing there. After the lockout, he stuck around for a part of the follow two seasons before ending his time with the Rangers in the AHL playing for the Hartford Wolfpack. He has since gone on to the KHL.

4. Seeing a guy traded away that you grew up with during a championship is always difficult. Rangers fans had to see that in 2001, when Sather sent fan favorite Adam Graves to San Jose for Mikael Samuelsson.

Although Samuelsson turned into a decent NHLer (after the Rangers traded him away as well), the thought of having to see Graves in another uniform was a lot for Ranger fans to swallow. It wasn't the last time we'd have to go through that either.

3. As mentioned earlier, July 1, 2007 brought another player to town that makes this list. His name is Chris Drury. His first two seasons here were decent but not awe inspiring. That's not the type of player Drury is. He was brought here to be a winner, and frankly, he hasn't.

His contract of five years, $35 million is killing the Rangers this season. His numbers have fallen off the table dramatically, and he's been left to center the fourth line. It was just a case of a decent player being on a great team during the final year of a contract.

2. The trade deadline of 2004 dramatically re-shaped the Rangers for years to come, as the team dumped high-priced salaries in return for youth and draft picks. One of the victims was Brian Leetch, arguably the best Ranger to ever put on the red, white, and blue.

Leetch played his entire career with the Rangers until the day Sather sent him to Toronto in exchange for Max Kondratiev and Jarkko Immonen, both of whom had zero success with the Rangers. To make matters worse, it was on Leetch's 36th birthday.

If this trade helped the organization in anyway, I'd be for it. But it did not, and we had to see Leetch sit on the opposing teams bench.

1. With so many blunders to choose from, it was hard to decide what should be number one. In the end, I had to choose the signing of defenseman Wade Redden to a six-year, $39 million contract. 

Redden, 31 at the time, had seen his production in Ottawa fall dramatically, so the idea of giving him a deal that would keep him a Ranger well into the twilight of his career seemed ludicrous. 

In his first full season in New York, the man the Rangers brought in to quarterback their powerplay tallied just three goals and 26 points in 81 games, making him the target of the Blue Seats game in and game out for years to come.


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