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Jul
05

Derek Stepan files for arbitration

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In the most unsurprising move of the offseason thus far, Rangers center Derek Stepan has filed for arbitration. He was the only player –since Carl Hagelin was traded– that was eligible for arbitration on the Rangers. This is just a step in the process, and it is very rare that a player actually goes to arbitration. The only players I can remember getting to that point were Sean Avery and Nik Zherdev.

By filing for arbitration, Stepan will be unable to sign an offer sheet, so this actually protects the Rangers a bit. Players and teams can still negotiate right up until the arbitration hearing, and I expect Stepan to sign his deal before his hearing.

Again, this is part of the process, and is normal for arbitration eligible players.

Categories : Offseason
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Jul
03

Rangers sign forward Luke Adam

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The New York Rangers have signed forward Luke Adam, adding to their AHL forward depth. Adam, a 2nd round pick in 2008, has previous stints with Buffalo and Columbus, spending most of his career in the AHL. His best season was 2011-2012, where he put up 10-10-20 in 52 games. In his 90 career games, he has a line of 15-11-26.

Adam will be AHL depth and injury depth. It is unlikely he sees significant time at the NHL level.

Categories : Signings
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Jul
03

Brandon Halverson signs entry-level deal

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Sorry for the delay on this one folks, I must have missed it. The Rangers have signed 2014 2nd round pick Brandon Halverson to his three-year entry-level deal. Details of the contract are unknown at the moment, but it is unlikely Halverson will turn pro until the 2016-2017 season. Halverson put up great numbers with the Soo Greyhounds in the OHL this year, posting an absurd 40-5-2 record, with a 2.63 GAA and a .913 SV%.

Halverson’s contract will slide this year, so his contract won’t count towards the 50 contract reserve list.

Categories : Prospects
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Jul
02

Martin St. Louis retires after 16 seasons

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The answer about where Martin St. Louis will play next year has been answered. When the Rangers announced they will not be bringing the winger back, there were a few teams interested, but ultimately the 40 year old winger decided on retirement instead. St. Louis, a shoo-in Hall of Famer, was noticeably slower in the second half of the season and in the playoffs, as it appeared age caught up with him.

That said, MSL is, again, a HOFer, possibly on the first ballot. In an era where bigger was better, the 5’8″ winger redefined what it meant to be an NHL player, paving the way for smaller, skilled players like Mats Zuccarello and Tyler Johnson. In 1134 games, MSL put up a line of 391-642-1033 (22-38-60 in 93 games with the Rangers) in the regular season. In the playoffs, he had a line of 42-48-90 in 102 games (9-13-22 in 43 games with the Rangers), including a Stanley Cup with the 2004 Tampa Bay Lightning.

His best moment as a Ranger, by far, was this goal:

This goal gave the Rangers a 3-1 series lead in the Eastern Conference Finals against the Montreal Canadiens, a series the Rangers would win in six games.

Categories : Players
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Well, the New York Rangers stayed quiet for the most part, making primarily depth signings to fill out the roster.  Let’s break down each move the Rangers made yesterday.

Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images

Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images

Front office moves

For those that missed it, Glen Sather stepped down as General Manager, but will remain as team president. Jeff Gorton is now the GM, and Jim Schoenfeld has been promoted to Senior VP, Assistant GM, and GM of the Hartford Wolf Pack. This was a move that came as a surprise, but had been speculated for a while. Gorton had been running most of the day to day by this point, so I think the move is more of a formality. That said, it was the biggest move the Rangers made yesterday, which is a good thing.

Worth noting here: Pre-lockout Slats was pretty brutal, and we’ve all recognized that. But post-lockout Slats built this team from a laughing stock into a perennial contender. In ten post-lockout seasons, the Rangers went to the playoffs in nine seasons. They went to a pair of Eastern Conference Finals, and one Stanley Cup Final. He wasn’t perfect by any means, and there are some significant questions, but the end-result was the best era of New York Rangers hockey we’ve ever seen.

Viktor Stalberg – one year, $1.1 million

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Categories : Signings, Trades
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viktor stalberg

Stalberg (Photo: NHL.com)

The New York Rangers were busy on the first day of free agency, but a change in the front office overshadowed all signings and trades for today. It has been speculated for a month now, but it has been officially announced that Jeff Gorton will replace Glen Sather as General Manager of the club. Slats will remain on as Team President, while Jim Schoenfeld has been promoted to Senior VP, Assistant General Manager, and GM of the Hartford Wolfpack.

Here is a quick round up of the moves Gorton made today:

  • Signed winger Viktor Stalberg to a one-year, $1.1 million contract
  • Signed defenseman Raphael Diaz to a one-year, $700k contract
  • Traded a 2017 6th round pick to Nashville for goalie Magnus Hellberg
  • Signed depth/AHL players Jayson Megna, Matt Lindblad, and Brian Gibbons

The live blog is still going, so keep up there for more moves from around the league.

Categories : Signings, Trades
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Jul
01

NHL free agency open thread/live blog

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nhl free agency

Oh Boromir, Glen Sather begs to differ.

Well, free agency is upon us. The Rangers don’t have much cap space to work with, as they still need to get Derek Stepan, Emerson Etem, J.T. Miller, and Jesper Fast under contract. When those four are signed, the Rangers will have 11 forwards and 6 defensemen, meaning they need a pair of forwards and a defenseman to fill out the roster.

That’s not to say they will go after free agents to fill those spots. It looks like the Rangers want to keep Matt Hunwick around as the 7D, who was pretty solid in that role last year. There are also a few kids –Brady Skjei, Dylan McIlrath, Oscar Lindberg, Ryan Bourque– vying for NHL spots next year. The holes in the roster may be filled by these kids, or they may be filled by a depth signing.

My guess is that the Rangers will look to add one depth forward via free agency on a one-year deal. Someone like Mike Santorelli or Shawn Horcoff, depending on price, are intriguing. Tomas Fleischmann is also a decent option.

Use this as your open thread for the day. Becky will be updating this with all signings across the league during the afternoon, and I will be back at night to do the night cap. There will be a blackout with no updates between 4:30-6pm EST.

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Categories : Offseason
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Jun
30

Mailbag: All free agency, all the time

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Got a few questions regarding free agency, which begins tomorrow at noon. Let’s have at it.

kevin klein

Will he stay or will he go? (Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)

BrooklynVic asks: Do you think the Rangers move any other pieces when free agency reopens Wednesday?

There is a serious logjam on defense. Brady Skjei and Dylan McIlrath are going to be fighting for spots, and all six defensemen from last year are returning, or at least it appears that way. Something has to give. I’ve been saying the Rangers are going to trade Kevin Klein, since he is the most easily moved, and I still believe that to be the case. However, with Carl Hagelin in Anaheim, the Rangers don’t need to move him right away. They can wait until camp, see how the kids perform, and go from there.

And no, I don’t think they are moving Tanner Glass.

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Categories : Musings
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The New York Rangers qualified eight of their nine RFAs yesterday, meaning they will retain the rights to those eight players when free agency opens on July 1. The one RFA they did not qualify was defenseman Conor Allen, who will become a UFA. The eight RFAs qualified: Derek Stepan, J.T. Miller, Jesper Fast, Emerson Etem, Dylan McIlrath, Mat Bodie, Marek Hrivik, and Oscar Lindberg.

Danny Kristo and Jason Missiaen are Group 6 UFAs, having reached the age of 25, played three professional seasons, and had fewer than 80 (Kristo) or 28 (Missiaen) NHL games played.

Categories : Offseason
Comments (27)
brady skjei

Skjei (Photo: Blueshirts United)

Apparently the Florida Panthers were only rumored to have offered Jimmy Hayes for Cam Talbot. That is not confirmed. What appears to be confirmed is their offer of a pair of 3rd rounders and a 5th rounder for Talbot:

– The Florida Panthers offered two third-round draft picks and a fifth-rounder for New York Rangers goalie Cam Talbot, but finished runner-up in that chase to the Oilers. The Panthers may have been offering restricted free-agent forward Jimmy Hayes, whose brother Kevin plays in New York, too. “I guess they wanted Cam to play out west,” said Florida GM Dale Tallon.

The Rangers got a 2nd, 3rd, and 5th for Talbot, which is a better deal than what Tallon had on the table. The whole Jimmy Hayes stuff is still unfounded rumormongoring.

As for the Rangers prospect camp, here is the roster:

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