Archive for Irresponsible Rumormongering

Larry Brooks had a bit of a “brain” dump today in his daily NY Post article. After a page and a half rant on the Phoenix Glendale Arizona TBD Coyotes, and how they are just a money-suck for the NHL, Bettman got into a few tidbits about the Rangers. To summarize (and perhaps save you some reading time):

  • It’s all but a certainty that the Rangers trade Cam Talbot at the draft. They are going to try and get draft picks, which makes sense. It’s been rumored that the Oilers are willing to part with the #16 pick for Talbot. Personally, I think that’s an overpayment, but Cory Schneider got the #9 overall pick. So what do I know?
  • The Rangers also targeted Shane Doan at the trade deadline last year, after landing Keith Yandle. Talks didn’t get far, but this was the second time Slats tried to get Doan, after trying to get him as a free agent in 2012. Doan is 39, on the last year of his deal at $5.25 million, and has declining production each of the last four seasons. Please stay away.
  • Dan Boyle will be back next year. He isn’t retiring and he isn’t requesting a trade. He was far from the biggest problem on the blue line anyway, and while his production decreased, he was still effective at moving the play up the ice. In the proper setting (sheltered OZ starts), he should be fine. Deployment is key.
  • Martin St. Louis won’t be back in New York. The final tally from that trade: Ryan Callahan, two 1st round picks (2014, 2015) and a 7th round pick (2015) for MSL and a 2nd round pick (2015). The Rangers went to the Stanley Cup Final and Eastern Conference Final in his 1+ years on Broadway.
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Per Alex Nunn, the Rangers are showing interest in 22-year-old Czech defenseman Vojtech Mozik. A rough translation of the original article here:

Additionally, you are dealing with yet another dilemma.New York Rangers will offer two-way contract.What about your future?
These are good issues. They watch me longer period of time, I’ve been there twice at the camp. We’ll see how everything goes. A few days ago ended in a playoff, in a few days everything should be resolved.If staying in Pilsen, whether or interest Rangers take on.

If the offer will be valid, you decided to leave?
Furt drilled me in the head, it’s a tough decision. In Pilsen is a super team, I’ve got a great environment, I get a lot of space on the ice. But the NHL will probably refuse. Yet even now I do not want to say either yes or not.

Mozik attended Rangers prospect camp in 2013 and 2014, and has apparently impressed enough to possibly earn an entry-level deal.

Mozik, a right-handed shot on the point, put up 10-19-29 in 51 games with Plzen HC in the Czech league this season, an improvement on his 8-6-14 performance the prior season.

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Eklund had a decent idea.

No, the blog hasn’t been hacked – I meant to write that. As whispers continue to grow that the Rangers are indeed seriously considering trading Rick Nash, the frequently mocked rumormonger “reported” that a potential destination for New York’s top forward could be the Detroit Red Wings for a package including Gustav Nyquist and draft picks.

Trading away a Hart Trophy contender is still likely a last resort for a club that has been just a few wins from the Stanley Cup in each of the last two seasons, but it’s also a move that the organization has to at least consider given the salary cap crunch. The Blueshirts barely have enough cash to keep their core together, let alone improve the roster with additions. And after getting so close to the top of the mountain in three of the last four seasons, there will again be the temptation to shake things up to avoid plateauing.

Which brings us to the aforementioned proposal. There are no sources cited nor any credible publications that have made the Nash/Detroit connection, so this is simply spit balling. That said – if momentum builds within the front office for a Nash deal, then that hypothetical trade makes a lot of sense for both sides. Read More→

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Some quick notes that broke over the weekend:

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Per Larry Brooks, Glen Sather is considering stepping down as General Manager of the New York Rangers. Slats has been GM since the 2000 season, and has been apparently grooming Assistant GM Jeff Gorton to replace him (which is why Slats denied teams the ability to interview Gorton this season).

Slats’ pre-salary cap run was mired with unsuccessful big-money signings and trades, aimed at buying a Stanley Cup. With the salary cap in place, Slats has seen the Rangers make the playoffs nine of the last ten years, with two runs to the Eastern Conference Final and one to the Stanley Cup Final in the past four years.

This does not mean that Slats is stepping down. In the article, Slats clearly states he is undecided about his future.

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Jun
05

Obligatory Rick Nash trade rumors post

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I love the offseason. It’s a chance to go through available players and play armchair-GM to make your favorite team a Cup contender next season. But with the offseason comes a season of lunacy. People thinking Tanner Glass will fetch this team a 3rd round pick. Or that Cam Talbot will fetch the #1 overall pick.

Sigh.

In the salary cap era, not many teams are able to throw big money at free agents at will. But yet, that doesn’t stop the media from throwing the Rangers out there as a possible destination for every single free agent. This usually starts with one member of the media speculating, with absolutely no basis, and then every other outlet picking it up.

This year, it appears that Rick Nash is the target of the trade rumors. It all started with Larry Brooks’ column five days ago, a seemingly innocuous post about how the Rangers will look to trade Nash to free up cap space. He even has a possible trade scenario: Nash to St. Louis for T.J. Oshie, Alex Steen, and Jaden Schwartz.

Oh Brooksie.

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Per Elliotte Friedman, the Rangers are one of at least five teams NCAA free agent defenseman Mike Reilly will meet with today. Other teams Reilly will be meeting with are Chicago, Minnesota, LA, and possibly Pittsburgh.

Reilly, originally a 4th round pick in 2011 by Columbus, elected not to sign with the Blue Jackets, likely due to their crowded blue line. It’s believed that Minnesota has the inside track because of Reilly’s connections to the team (his dad is a minority investor with the group that owns the Wild), but the Rangers have Brady Skjei, Reilly’s teammate throughout college.

Reilly put up big numbers with Minnesota the last two years, with 15 goals and 75 points in 80 games over the last two years. He’s being described as a potential top-four defenseman with a big shot from the point, something the Rangers sorely need.

I find it to be amazing that the Rangers are even on his interview list. They have three guys signed long term (Staal, Girardi, McDonagh). They have a big prospect on the way (Skjei). They have Yandle and Boyle for at least this year. They also have Klein. The blue line is just as crowded as Columbus’. Perhaps Slats will be working magic to convince him to sign. After all, few thought Kevin Hayes would land in New York.

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Per Larry Brooks, the New York Rangers are one of the many teams interested in Boston University goaltender Matt O’Connor. O’Connor attended Rangers prospect camp this past summer, and the Rangers may be interested as a potential Cam Talbot replacement after next season. Talbot is signed for next year at $1.45 million, and while he has been a strong backup, that is a lot of cap space to commit to a backup.

Should the Rangers lose Talbot to free agency or via trade, they will have an opening at backup while MacKenzie Skapski develops. As Henrik Lundqvist gets older, having insurance in net is always a good thing.

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In the “oh FFS please don’t do this” department, Bob McKenzie has reported that the Rangers are very interested in Toronto Maple Leafs center Tyler Bozak. Before I go into why this is makes absolutely zero logical sense, let’s look at Bozak the player, independent of his fit in New York. And let me tell you, it’s not pretty.

Everyone is going to look at his close-to-50-points-but-never-got-to-50-points lines from the last three seasons and think this guy is a steal at that price. Here’s the major problem: He doesn’t produce outside of Phil Kessel. Period. End of story. Don’t believe me? Check this out:

Oh boy is this ugly.

Oh boy is this ugly.

Just a reminder that CF/CA is now SATF/SATA.

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As the trade deadline draws nearer, the rumors are abound about who the New York Rangers will target to improve the team for a playoff run. There are a bunch of them, so here we go.

  • Larry Brooks says that the Rangers might target Mark Letestu of Columbus, Torrey Mitchell of Buffalo, or Curtis Glencross of Calgary.
  • As for Glencross, who requested a trade from Calgary in the midst of a potential playoff push, he has a limited no-trade clause and the Rangers would need to be on that list of teams in which he will accept a trade.
  • Steve Zipay notes that the Rangers may also target James Sheppard of San Jose, Kyle Brodziak of Minnesota, Daniel Winnik of Toronto, Erik Condra of Ottawa, Jan Hejda of Colorado, or Brett Bellmore of Carolina.
  • Zipay also notes that the Rangers will not part ways with their top three prospects: Anthony Duclair, Pavel Buchnevich, or Brady Skjei. Zip says Danny Kristo and others in the AHL are available for the right return. It’s worth noting that Kristo is a UFA after this year, and has minimal value.
  • Non trade related news: Jesper Fast skated in practice today, which is always a good sign. He was in a non-contact jersey.
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