Archive for Irresponsible Rumormongering

dan girardi marc staal

With the deadline to ask players to waive no move clauses coming up at 5pm tomorrow, and the expansion draft coming just one week later, the rumors are coming in from every direction. Some have a lot of information, others do not. Let’s see if we can summarize some of the tidbits flying around.

  • Per Elliotte Friedman, Scott Arniel interviewed with Buffalo and Florida. I’m assuming it was for their head coaching gigs. Doesn’t look like he got the job at either team though.
  • Also per Friedman, there’s a lot of smoke/connections between Lindy Ruff and New York. Apparently he was contacted to join Alain Vigneault’s staff, presumably as an assistant, and not as a future replacement. Just what the Rangers need – another coach who refused to adapt to the changing NHL.

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Jun
08

Potential trade partner: Minnesota Wild

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matt dumba jared spurgeon

Pioneer Press: John Autey

As the expansion draft nears, we are going to begin hearing rumors of trades with Vegas to protect players and/or bribe Vegas into taking a contract. We’ve seen one such rumor publicized already, and it’s likely we will see more. But we will also begin seeing trades made by clubs who are in a bad position with protected players. Anaheim is one such team, covered already last week. Another team in a precarious situation: Minnesota.

Minnesota is a little stuck right now with no-move clauses. Zach Parise, Mikko Koivu, and Jason Pominville all have no moves up front, with Ryan Suter having a no move on the back end. If you assume that the Wild will go the 7-3-1 route, then they have a serious problem.

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May
26

Potential trade partner: Anaheim Ducks

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sami vatanen josh manson

Photo by Kevin Sullivan, Orange County Register/SCNG

Update: The injuries to Vatanen/Lindholm have minimal impact on the expansion draft. They will still need to be protected by Anaheim, and Vegas would still jump at the opportunity to get either of them. It may impact Vatanen’s trade value. albeit minimally because he is only 25.

The biggest task of the offseason for Jeff Gorton is to retool the Rangers’ blue line. While we’ve covered the futures of Dan Girardi and Marc Staal extensively, there is still a giant hold at 1RD. It’s a position Girardi has filled for the past decade, but simply cannot do so going forward. While Kevin Shattenkirk is certainly intriguing, the price tag may make him unrealistic. In that regard, Gorton must turn to the trade market.

Identifying trade partners takes an unusual twist this summer, as teams are going to look to make trades to position themselves favorably for the expansion draft. For some teams, that may mean trading a defenseman that may be lost during the draft. That is exactly the case in Anaheim.

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Derek Stepan has registered at least 53 points in each of the last four seasons

With the Rangers hamstrung by a tricky cap situation, several cumbersome no-movement clauses and few tradable assets that make sense to part with, there’s been quite a bit of chatter that Derek Stepan might be the most logical piece to dangle in exchange for a right-handed defenseman.

But while there’s some plausibility to the idea, dealing Stepan would also leave a gaping hole at center. So hypothetically speaking, how could the Rangers handle the crucial pivot position if Stepan were shipped out of town?

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May
19

2017 BSB Offseason Plan Contest

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msgnetworks.com

After an unceremonious loss to the Senators, we find ourselves here again.  The offseason.  This one is particularly interesting, not only because of the major changes likely on the horizon for the Blueshirts, but also the Expansion Draft that threatens to throw a wrench in the roster planning for the entire league.

We typically get everyone’s basic perspective and team building philosophy in our lively comments section, but let’s take it up a notch, shall we?  We want to put you in the driver’s seat of the New York Rangers’ offseason. That’s right, the Offseason Plan Contest is back.  For the uninitiated, we have run this contest a few times in the past and gotten some killer submissions.  We want you to become the architect of the New York Rangers organization and outline your plan to bring the team back to glory.

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May
18

Breaking down the Ilya Kovalchuk rumors

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ilya kovalchuk

Ever since the news broke that Ilya Kovalchuk wants to come back to the NHL, preferring to play in New York or Florida, the Rangers have been linked to them. Elliotte Friedman added fuel to that fire during this week’s 30 Thoughts, mentioning that the Rangers also appear to have interest.

It would be silly for Jeff Gorton to simply ignore Kovalchuk’s return. After all, he’s been a point-per-game player in the KHL. At 34 years old and at that elite talent level, he’s still got gas left in the tank. However the major question isn’t whether he has gas left, it’s how much. Is he going to be another Jaromir Jagr, putting up 40 points until he turns 900 years old? Or will he fizzle out after half a season?

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radim simek

The Rangers have decided that they want to make their prospect pool to model the United Nation. After signing three NCAA prospects in the spring, the Rangers followed up by signing the highly coveted Alexei Bereglazov from Russia and are believed to be in contention to potentially sign Swedish defenseman Andreas Borgman. I believe that the Rangers may be adding a Czech defenseman in the coming days to the prospect pool as well.

Radim Simek is one of the top Czech defensemen not in the NHL, and at 24 years old he wants to take a chance in North America. It was originally speculated that the San Jose Sharks will be the team that will be able to sign Simek to a contract, which makes sense. Good team, good weather, they have a history of signing good Euros to deals (Rangers should sign Tim Heed away from them this summer), and they have a Czech on the team. Apparently, that all changed a few days ago as seen in this article. Here is the interesting quote thanks to Google translate:

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alexei bereglazov

Per our very own Josh Khalfin, citing Igor Eronko, the Rangers are likely to sign Russian defenseman Alexei Bereglazov once his KHL deal expires. Bereglazov is a big dude at 6’4″ and 220 lbs, but is a very mobile skater. Josh did a full breakdown of him earlier this month, and you should definitely check it out.

Should he sign with the Rangers, he will likely need a little time in the AHL to get accustomed to the North American rink and game. However he is a solid player and could slide into the lineup almost right away. The added benefit –aside from just landing a solid prospect, even at 22 years old– is that Bereglazov played in the KHL, and is someone that Pavel Buchnevich is familiar with. Buchnevich passed on all bonuses to have a KHL-out clause in his deal. This could be a move to keep Buchnevich comfortable as well.

These are just rumors for now, but very strong rumors. Nothing can be official until his contract in the KHL officially expires.

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mike vecchione

Per Larry Brooks, the Rangers have their sights set on Hobey Baker finalist Mike Vecchione of Union College. Josh wrote briefly on Vecchione, stating that he is one of the more dynamic centers in the NCAA. He put up 29-34-63 in 38 games this year with Union. In 149 NCAA games, he has a line of 71-105-176.

The drawback here is that Vecchione is already 24 years old, and much like prior undrafted NCAA free agents, he has more leverage than Vinni Letteri and Vince Pedrie. The Rangers would likely need to sign him this year –ineligible for the playoffs– which would burn a year of his ELC. It’s certainly a risk.

But with risk comes reward. It is likely the Rangers lost one of Jesper Fast or Oscar Lindberg to Vegas in expansion. If Vecchione can make the jump right away, which is no guarantee, then he might be able to fill that fourth line role.

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Photo by David Hahn/Icon Sportswire

Antti Raanta has been having a stellar season. Forced into more playing time than expected, he has shined brightly and helped stabilize what could have been a disaster in net for the Blueshirts. It’s reminiscent of when Cam Talbot was forced into more playing time when Ryan McDonagh tried to decapitate Henrik Lundqvist.

Talbot was traded that offseason to the Edmonton Oilers for three draft picks that the Rangers desperately needed. Almost immediately after the trade, the Rangers landed Raanta in a deal with Chicago for Ryan Haggerty. Haggerty is already 24 and has not seen a single NHL game. Suffice it to say, Benoit Allaire picked his man wisely.

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