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RUMOR MILL

Thursday - March 25th

With 18 days remaining until the NHL trade deadline, all is relatively quiet on the Rangers front.

Not unexpectedly, the Rangers are probably going to be minor players this time round, without much in the way of short term assets they would be looking to part with.

Clearly they would look at offers for those on short term or expiring contracts like Brendan Smith, Ryan Strome, Jack Johnson and perhaps the likes of Colin Blackwell.


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SEPTEMBER 24TH, 2014
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Question Of The Day

September 29th, 2017

How many rostered players were on the ice for opening night 2016-17

Answer...
  BIRTHDAYS

Gus Mancuso - 1914

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  RANDOM RANGER

PETE CONACHER
(1954-1956)
  Born: Jul 29 - 1932  
  Pos: Left Wing  
  GP: 93  
  G: 21  
  A: 18  
  Pts: 39  
  PIMs: 18  
 

The Rangers Have Options
Posted by Daniel Akeson ≡ - December 13, 2007

It may have been a while since posts here, but if you have been following on my other blog, Pucks on Broadway, you've seen that I think the Rangers are in drastic need of a change or shakeup.

While the team is not playing overly poorly, the inconsistency is enough cause for concern. The character of the team is not that of a championship franchise and there are some ways to remedy that before this ship sails.

First, the drastic options:

1. Trade Jaromir Jagr - Yes, this is a shocker. I doubt it will happen, though internet rumors have claimed otherwise, but the culture of the Rangers has changed over the past two seasons with the acquisitions of Brendan Shanahan, Scott Gomez, and Chris Drury. Combine that with the exit of Michael Nylander and Jagr is the odd man out. His disposition and lack of effort at this point is dragging the first line down, but his ability to score and natural talent is enough to bring in a top winger and defenseman.

2. Fire Tom Renney - I am a huge Tom Renney fan, but if he can't motivate this group, there may need to be a "head banger" in that locker room to make this group tick. Could a Keenan-esque coach bring more success than Renney? Perhaps, and it seems to be working across the river in New Jersey.

3. Bring up the rookies - Bench or waive the listless veterans and play the kids. Nigel Dawes, Ivan Baranka, Greg Moore, etc. could come up and provide a much needed spark. Dan Girardi and Ryan Callahan did it last season and they could be the key to this season as well. Who sits? You decide.

While these are certainly major changes, they are in fact highly unlikely. Renney is well liked by the players and administration, Jagr is the captain and has so much upside when playing well, and there isn't much room for the rookies right now.

Next, the less drastic options:

1. Make a top-tier trade - The Rangers are in need of a stud winger or defenseman. Despite having the names of Shanahan and Jagr on the roster, their age is showing and there isn't much under them by the means of wingers. The defense has a nice core of youth, but a whole lot of second and third liners without a true first pairing player. Who's available? There will be quite a few over the next month, but Marek Malik, Paul Mara, Petr Prucha, Al Montoya, and Marcel Hossa all seem to be on the block.

2. Change the line combinations - Brandon Dubinsky is playing stellar, but it's time that Drury is on the first line. He is a top line player that needs top line minutes to be successful. He hasn't been given a fair shot with the Captain and always said he meshed well with Straka. That will take some pressure off Dubinsky and generate a true top line. Hossa should also not be in the mix at this point. He hasn't proven much and really hasn't shown the same kind of heart that Prucha and Callahan have. It's time for this experiment to stop.

Finally, the likely options:

1. Upgrade the defense - With Malik being a healthy scratch and Paul Mara being the highest paid third pair defenseman in the league, it's time for the Rangers to change the defense. I think they will. When Mara was brought back early while still injured last week and played with Strudwick, just to sit Malik, that was a sign. Whether Malik is on the move or Mara is being showcased, there is something coming and it wouldn't surprise me if the Rangers were in the Anaheim mix.

2. Stay the course - Yes, time builds chemistry and that is a major philosophy for Renney. He is honest in his assessments of these players, but at the same time, believes in them. The youth will be served, with Dubinsky gaining that valuable experienve, as well as Prucha and Callahan with Drury. Dawes and Moore will get occasional callups for added experience, but probably won't stick until next season. Will the current lineup improve? Probably.

But hey, could it get much worse or frustrating?


Profile of the Author:
An avid New York Rangers fan, season ticket holder, and New York critic! Feel free to contact me or visit my blog at PucksOnBroadway.blogspot.com!

 Additional stories from Daniel Akeson:


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