Corey Crawford got $6m per year long term? I think it’s clear at this stage that Henrik Lundqvist is going to get a serious pay rise. Some goaltenders are products of great teams (Crawford, a good but not great goalie may be exhibit A here) and some are great goaltenders who make teams better – a la Lundqvist. Unless he signs a team friendly deal Lundqvist will easily walk away as an 8m player.
Traverse City I: My intrigue is squarely focussed on Danny Kristo and Oscar Lindberg. Really need to see these guys dominate at this level. They’ll need to if they think they stand a chance at getting immediate shots at the NHL level.
Traverse City II: It will also be very important to see guys such as Conor Allen and Tommy Hughes and how these guys cope with the step up in competition. The Rangers need to start bringing through the next wave of defensive prospects when you consider the potentially uncertain futures of Dan Girardi, Marc Staal and Anton Stralman. Without being able to get their hands on college guys such as Brady Skjei it’s important that the Rangers can develop players themselves.
Speaking of Dan Girardi and Marc Staal: If Niklas Hjalmarsson can turn a solid but unspectacular skill set/career into a 5 year 20m deal, health allowing, Staal and Girardi are likely to command north of 5m/year. These kind of comparables are dangerous for the Rangers who may have to choose between players rather than be able to keep all of them if their demands are excessive.
Did everyone see Teemu Selanne’s announcement?!
Veteran Help? Heading toward training camp you have to wonder if the Rangers will invite any veterans like they did with Ruslan Fedotenko a while back. Tim Connolly, Dave Steckel, Vinny Prospal, Mason Raymond, Brendan Morrow, Tom Gilbert and Ron Hainsey are all guys that could make an impact for a team looking for talent and depth.
Traverse City will tell the Rangers a lot about the readiness of numerous prospects so a guy like Morrow might be an intriguing option when you consider Callahan and Hagelin’s injury statuses.
You just have to cast an interested glance at the goaltending situation in Jersey. Having announced Brodeur as the guy and Schneider as the ‘1A’, there’s a huge potential for goalie controversy for the Devils. Brodeur isn’t shy about going public with his opinion and Schneider isn’t going to be happy being a back up if he’s the better player at this stage of his career.
- If you invited two veterans to camp, who and why?
- If cap issues dictated, who would you choose Staal or Girardi?
- Who will be the biggest camp surprise?
- Who’s assumed roster spot is under the most scrutiny heading into camp?