Sather: Lots of interest in Brian Boyle

(Image Credit: Newsday)

Rangers GM Glen Sather raised some eyebrows last week when he told Edmonton’s Team 1260 that he’s received lots of interest in center Brian Boyle, but is loath to deal the 28-year-old.

“I’ve had a lot of requests for Brian’s services,” Sather said. “I’m not anxious to trade him. I think he’s a good player, he’s a great team guy and I think he has still an upside to go to. He’s one of those guys you may regret trading if you do trade him so I’m not anxious to do anything with him at this time.”

Boyle is perhaps the most polarizing player on New York’s roster and though we’re strong supporters of him here, his immediate future is a little cloudy.  After the Rangers hired new coach Alain Vigneault, many assumed that Boyle would become Vigneault’s new defensive specialist, in the mold of Manny Malhotra.  Given Vigneault’s mastery of matchup battles, Boyle seemed like he was in a good position to thrive as a shutdown checking center under his new coach.

However, shortly after hiring Vigneault, the Rangers inked Dominic Moore to a one-year deal, giving the Blueshirts one too many centers.  Derek Stepan, Brad Richards and Derick Brassard are all obviously secure, but it’s still a mystery how Vigneault will handle Boyle and Moore.  There’s been some talk of moving Boyle back to wing – as John Tortorella occasionally did in the past – but that would be misusing his talents.

With promising two-way center Oscar Lindberg coming over from Sweden this season and likely ready for a full-time role on Broadway in 2014-2015, perhaps it does make sense to consider offers for Boyle’s services.  Sather certainly shouldn’t rush to make a move – Boyle could still be very useful this season and provides valuable injury insurance – but if there’s as much interest in Boyle as Sather indicated, then Boyle would appear to be prime trade bait before he becomes a UFA next summer.

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  • With all of his short comings, (slow of foot), I still believe that Boyle is an assit, and would hope that the Rangers keep him.

    Early on, with Hags, and Callie out due to injuries, Boyle can go to the wing, and play either 3rd, or 4th line wing. He is a proven PKer, and maybe he can throw that big frame of his around a little more. There are a lot of fans that are down on him, but he is of value to this team, and should be kept.

    • Hearing anything from Sather voluntarily usually means the opposite: he is desparate to trade Boyle and cant get any takers.

      • You’re just looking for a scapegoat and Boyle is the easy choice. Fans don’t know why they hate Boyle. They just follow the herd with a bell around their neck mooooing!!!!!!!!!!!

  • Boyle DOES NOT LACK physicality, excellent shot blocker, excellent on faceoffs.

    However, Boyle does not have spd, is not a good scorer (partly because most of his shifts start in the defensive zone), and is not a fighter(although he had a draw in a fight with semi tough guy Adam McQuaid last season. If he could learn to fight just average, his stock would go way up and allow Dorsett to move on to greener pastures. Dorsett is a willing, but less than average combatant.

  • Boyle is a big part of the team and should be a big part of the coming year. He is a strong defender who allows the more offensively skilled players to get better match ups

    His 20 goal season was an anomaly and so long as that is recognized, he’s a key cog

  • Moore’s signed to a 1 year deal. The front office is going to gauge these two against each other, figure out who is the better keeper, and move the other guy before the deadline.

  • Every good team needs a nemchinov playing center. Strong down the center and back end wins cups.

    He is not that slow. But could be faster.

    Having 5 centers so insulates against injury. One goes down another takes the spot.

    Plus our centers can also play Wing. Moore could be a great right wing.

  • That might happen. The Rangers are kind of thin on the right side and without Cally for a month are worse off so that could happen. Moore could play RW or Boyle could play on the left side. Either way, Boyle will play an important role on the team.

  • Boyle gets moved by the deadline. Moore is his stopgap replacement by then. Moore will be big for us. The dude plays with so much heart.

  • I like Boyle but if we can something for him before we lose him then I’m all for it. Lets hope Slats is pumping up the value by saying there’s a lot of interest. With all of the young players in the system it’s time to see what they can do.
    Listen, I like him but he’s not that physical for a man his size, he doesn’t score much, and there are younger guys who can do the job better.

    • I tend to agree with this sentiment, but trading Boyle now leaves a gaping hole on the PK. I also love what he brings in the playoffs. If I can be guaranteed the Rangers won’t see a dropoff in those areas I think getting something for Boyle is a good idea. Lots of ifs though.

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