Archive for Dan Girardi

Photo Credit: New York Rangers

Happy Friday, BSB faithful.  Sorry to double down on the “Thoughts” and “Musings” posts this week, but it’s been a very active week in Rangerland.  The last time I wrote, it was the day before the Expansion Draft.  Obviously, quite a lot has happened since then.  So, as you can imagine, I have some thoughts.

1. Since there is a lot to analyze, let’s take this in semi-chronological order. Let’s start with the Girardi buy-out.  It had to be done.  I know it sucks carrying his cap hit for the next few years, but the Rangers really had no choice.  They needed to get younger and more mobile on the blue line and starting to clear the log-jam of overpriced veterans was the first domino.  I wish Dan all the best in Tampa, even if I gagged a little when I saw the contract.  Nice try, Yzerman.

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Jun
14

Rangers to buy out Dan Girardi

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Photo: Jim McIsaac/Getty Images North America

The Rangers have made it official. They will buy out the remaining years of Dan Girardi’s contract. Girardi had three years remaining at a $5.5 million cap hit. The buyout will save the Rangers almost $3 million this year and $2 million the next two years. The Rangers will have a $1.1 million cap hit for the three years following.

Girardi was a career Ranger with a great story, going from undrafted free agent to top pairing defenseman on a Stanley Cup Finalist. However his game deteriorated very quickly under Alain Vigneault, and his lack of foot speed was exploited over the past three seasons.

Girardi finishes his Rangers career with a line of 46-185-230 in 788 games, and 6-27-33 in 122 career playoff games.

Categories : Transactions
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Photo: Andrew Theodorakis/NY Daily News

Per Larry Brooks, the Rangers did not ask defensemen Marc Staal and Dan Girardi to waive their no-move clauses by the 5pm deadline today. That means both will be automatically protected in the coming expansion draft next week. Ryan McDonagh will be the third defenseman protected.

This comes as little surprise to me. There weren’t any other defensemen worth protecting. Kevin Klein isn’t a regular. Nick Holden also isn’t worth a protection spot. Even with his 11 goals and 34 points, dangling him in the draft takes attention away from Jesper Fast, Oscar Lindberg, and Michael Grabner.

No need to panic. The true test will be following expansion, to see what Jeff Gorton has up his sleeve.

Categories : Offseason
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dan girardi marc staal

One of the major topics this year is the futures of Marc Staal and Dan Girardi. It’s a necessary evil to discuss, as it’s become abundantly clear that neither can compete in the top-four, which is what they are paid to do. They both have flashes and both have good games here and there, but on the whole, neither are top-four anymore. It’s painful to say, as they have a whopping 21 years with the Rangers combined and have been the backbone of the Rangers’ resurgence to relevance since Lockout 2.0 (2005).

But here we are, discussing what the future holds for them. With a combined $11.2 million in cap space and three (Girardi) or four (Staal) years remaining, neither contract is desired across the league. The Wade Redden rule –and their no-move clauses– make it impossible to bury them in the minors. So the Rangers are left with two choices. The first is to buy them out. The second is to trade viable assets with their toxic contracts to rid themselves of the pair.

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Categories : Players
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Photo: Jim McIsaac/Getty Images North America

Defenseman Dan Girardi has been nominated as the Rangers’ selection for the Masterton Trophy this year. The Masterton trophy is awarded annually to the National Hockey League player who best exemplifies the qualities of perseverance, sportsmanship, and dedication to ice hockey.

Girardi is finally healthy this season after playing most of last year with a fractured kneecap. I can’t help but think that this is more of a career achievement nomination for a lifelong Ranger whose future is uncertain. Once a universal fan favorite, Girardi has seen his play severely decline over the past three seasons. It’s been tough to watch, as we all recognize what he’s done for this organization. I personally hope he wins it.

Five Rangers have won the trophy in the past, with Dominic Moore being the most recent in 2013-2014. Jean Rattelle, Rob Gilbert, Anders Hedberg, and Adam Graves have won it previously.

Categories : Awards
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Bill Wippert/NHLI via Getty Images

Update: Girardi will be out ten days to two weeks. Steven Kampfer has been recalled.

Original Post: The Rangers have announced that Dan Girardi will be out tonight, dealing with recurring effects of his ankle injury. With Kevin Klein still out, that leaves the Rangers with just five defensemen. Something is coming to address this, in my opinion.

That something could be minor, like a call up. But it could expedite a trade for the Rangers. Since missing out on Kevin Shattenkirk, the only rumor that has surfaced is the one for Brendan Smith.

My guess is that Jeff Gorton is working the phones for a trade, but has a defenseman form Hartford in mind. If nothing materializes, he will file the paperwork for an emergency call up. Just my guess. Or, of course, Klein could play.

Categories : Injuries
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Bill Wippert/NHLI via Getty Images

This offseason, head coach Alain Vigneault said the plan was to get defenseman Dan Girardi some rest from time to time. The idea made sense, as Girardi played most of last season with a fractured kneecap, and was just downright awful. This was on top of his declining play becoming the focal point among fans. After all, keeping Girardi fresh is the best way to get the best hockey out of him as he ages.

However through this point of the season, Girardi has been a healthy scratch for rest just once. It has showed in his on-ice performance, as he simply can’t keep up with the opposition’s top skaters. But that hasn’t stopped AV from dressing him nightly. He was asked about this after practice on Saturday, and his answer clued us into what his approach will be going forward.

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Categories : Players
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Jan
10

Midseason report cards: The defense

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ryan mcdonagh kevin klein

Photo: MSG

With the Rangers on their bye week, which was perfectly timed with the halfway point of the season, we are afforded the opportunity to evaluate the Rangers with nothing else going on. Midseason report cards have been a bit of a tradition here at BSB, so let’s keep that tradition going, shall we?

Over the next few days, each of us will be tackling a different aspect of the team, and assigning grades accordingly. I’m batting leadoff here, and I’m going to be discussing the most polarizing aspect of this year’s team: The defense.

Overall, the back line for the Rangers has been relatively bad. The combination of age, injuries, wear and tear, and a shift towards speed has made what was once a strong defense into a bottom-five unit in the league. The slow start by Henrik Lundqvist exposed the defense even more. But it’s not all bad, either.

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Categories : Defense
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Photo: Jim McIsaac/Getty Images North America

The Rangers need defensive help. Most of that is because of the rapid decline of Dan Girardi, who continues to play on the top pair due to lack of other options on the Rangers. No matter where you sit on the Girardi spectrum, it’s tough to argue against Girardi being a shell of what he was five years ago. Players like him deserve a leash, but that leash should have run out two years ago.

Beyond his declining play, his contract is an albatross to the Rangers. He is signed for another three years following the 2016-2017 season, with a $5.5 million cap hit. The Rangers were able to get some cap breathing space in the Derick Brassard/Mika Zibanejad swap, but not enough to make an adequate fix to the defense. Even if the Rangers had the space to make an upgrade, there’s no room for additions. Something has to give.

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Photo: Andrew Theodorakis/NY Daily News

At the end of last spring, it was fairly apparent to anyone who had watched the team, whether it was all year long or just the short time the Rangers spent in the post season, that the defense was an issue. Putting aside GM Jeff Gorton’s attempts to address this issue or lack thereof, a popular narrative began floating around that the squad’s worst two defenders, Dan Girardi and Marc Staal, would bounce back come October.

Although at the time this notion may have seemed plausible to some and wishful thinking to others, we’re at a point in the season where we can begin to evaluate whether or not that either player has truly bounced back. The Rangers have played enough games to get us to a point where statistical sample sizes are meaningful, and the body of work that we’ve seen on the ice is more than just a momentary flash in the pan.

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Categories : Players
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