In old news, John Tortorella will be back as coach of the Rangers for at least another three years, according to Larry Brooks. Tortorella definitely earned his extension, as he led an injury-plagued Rangers team that lacked any significant talent (save for Marian Gaborik) to the playoffs. The team exceeded all expectations this year, and although they were bounced from the playoffs in the first round, the Rangers showed fans that the best is yet to come. It’s been a while since Ranger fans have been able to say the future is bright. The players with the bright future have all bought into Tortorella’s system and coaching style, so keeping him around was a no-brainer.
The beat writers have been doing a great job at updating us on the break-up day notes, including who will be attending the World Championships, and who has been talkative abouut their contract status. First, regarding the Worlds, Vinny Prospal (Czech Republic) and Brandon Dubinsky (USA) are definitely out. Derek Stepan and Ryan McDonagh (USA) are likely in. Artem Anisimov (Russia) is in. Marian Gaborik (Slovakia) is also in. Henrik Lundqvist (Sweden) is still deciding.
As for contracts, the only player that has been relatively candid about his status is Brian Boyle who “expects to re-sign quickly”. Prospal wants to be back, but health will dictate if he will. The other pending RFAs and UFAs have been relatively mum on the subject.