Thoughts on the Brendan Lemieux contract

The Rangers inked RFA winger Brendan Lemieux to a one-year, $925,000 deal earlier this week while the blog was down. It was relatively expected that he would sign for around that, since he didn’t have much of a track record or history. As per usual, I have some thoughts.

1. As mentioned, Lemieux didn’t have much leverage. He has just 72 games of NHL experience, with the majority of it coming this past season. His career line is 13-5-18. Yes he looked decent in his 19 games in New York last season, but that’s not enough to warrant a big contract, let alone a long term contract. This is a show me deal, and that’s perfectly fine by me.

2. I’d like to think that Jeff Gorton knew what he was doing when he brought in Micheal Haley on a PTO. If it were me, that would have been a direct message to Lemieux to sign the contract and get to camp, or else we can replace you. Sure, Haley is older and likely not as good, but it just added to the Blueshirts’ leverage.

3. Funny enough, I don’t think Lemieux’s spot is a guarantee. We like to think it is, especially since he would need to pass through waivers. But that doesn’t mean his spot in the lineup is guaranteed. He may find himself rotating as the 13F if he can’t beat out Boo Nieves. Heck, a strong camp from Phil Di Giuseppe might put his spot at risk.

4. Lemieux does have the makings of a fan favorite. His style of play is something the Rangers don’t really have, and if he can contribute then he’s going to be a valuable asset. When I say contribute, I mean more of the Sean Avery Part One, and not Sean Avery Part Two. Part One was a possession driver, agitator, and could put up points. Part Two was only one of those things.

5. Point #4 has a direct impact into his future with the Rangers. If he’s Avery Part Two, then he’s not going to be with this club for long. If he’s Part One, he’s only 23 years old and could be with the club for the foreseeable future. His type of player is valuable if he’s also contributing offensively and isn’t a black hole on the ice when he doesn’t have the puck. These are important aspects to the new NHL.

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  • I think Lemieux’s spot is pretty much guaranteed to be honest. He’s the long term solution to the question: “who is going to provide the grit, the sandpaper, the piss and vinegar on this team”. No, he won’t wow us with 25+ goals a season, but I could easily see him potting between 15+ with regular ice time — if he ever develops into anything more than that, pure pure gravy.

    • This team needs some kind of grit and Lemiuex showed he was more than willing to play that kind of game. A pest with some decent hockey skill, he’s the kind of player every team wants. Hope he sticks around for a while, he can easily become a fan favorite

      • Honestly gentleman, I think Dave’s point was more to the fact of the small sample size, yes nice but ….well, small. He needs to be consistent or he will easily be replaced. Not that I speak for Dave, I do not. I speak for me, sometimes out loud or in print.

        I will be there opening night in my old season ticket seats…cannot wait!

  • Even though he held out right up to camp to see what he could get I like that he signed before missing any of camp and he said all the right things after signing. He showed he really wants to be here. I think he makes the team. He’s the type of guy Quinn likes.

  • Someone on this roster has to throw their body around, snowplow their goalie and be a general nuisance near the net. We have built a finesse team of fast, talented, nice players. Lemieux is that annoying, tough guy, who will go after somebody who takes liberties with our top line players.

    If he can also be a strong PK guy, you do not have to waste anyone in the top 6 on the PK’ I think he makes the team.

    Tony D on the other hand, IMO, is playing a dangerous game which needs to end very soon if he wants to be a Ranger.

    • Tony is only hurting himself by holding out. He’s giving Fox the chance to take his spot as a top 4 RHD. Plus it seems like Joey Keane is impressing the team so there’s a chance he can get a spot very soon.

      • Like I wrote yesterday, the writing is on the wall for ADA. He’ll never be top pair, is 4th out of 5 D in the expansion draft protected list.

        Sign the QO, kick ass, take names get an extension that takes him 1 year shy of UFA(barbell contract with a bonus up front and the last year monster paragraph 1) and then get dealt either at the trade deadline or July 2.

  • I am glad Lemieux was signed. I guess they might have rewarded him with a little extra cash for not holding out.

    Tony D., like Lemieux, adds some more sandpaper to the lineup while having more skill than Lemiuex.

    I think that it is regrettable that his agent has led him down the hold out path. The kid still has to prove his worth despite having done well once he was in the lineup regularly at the end of last season. Missing training camp will not serve him well if he comes to terms with the team during the regular season. Tony, don’t be stunod, suck it up and sign up.

    • I understand his position, a simple QO raise is insufficient for what he did. There was many a time last season where he was the best d’man on the team … and unlike Lemieux, he’s been here two seasons. I’m not suggesting the team has to offer him a multi year deal or a big raise, but they’re being “hard” on him.

      Re: his agent … it may be this is a scheme to force a trade. Perhaps “they” see the writing on the wall — Tony D has been replaced by local boy Fox and superseded by Trouba on the right side. It could be they sense that his playing time (PP time in particular) will be diminished —- and I have a feeling they’re right. That of course will damage his earning capacity next year. Unfortunately the Rangers hold the cards here, they can just ride this out all year if they want to … so Tony is between a rock and a hard place — the difference is the rock won’t break, but the hard place might if there’s an injury or if Fox falters. They need to choose the hard place before it’s too late.

  • Miller and Fox behind Trouba on the right side next season. Miller is a class act–ADA is a clown. Trade him for a second.

  • I can’t help but think that K’Andre Miller and Nils Lundkvist are playing into this whole thing. ADA does deserve more than his QO, but he’s stuck. He only has about half a season of NHL level consistancy under his belt here, and he’s been on quite a few teams already due to off-ice issues and questions on his maturity.

    I thought he finally figured it all out last season and then he does this. To me, he’s really taking a big chance here with his NHL career overall. Missing camp is going to hurt his season (here or elsewhere). And IMHO, it probably doesn’t help him or the NYR attract interest from other teams who all know his history of being “difficult” for various reasons.

    At the end of the day, not playing is not helping his game or the perception around him. This is a very dangerous game to play for a player who has not yet been in the league consistantly.

    • I don’t blame ADA for holding out for a better, perhaps multi year deal. There is always a possibility that a player gets injured and then all this talk about getting paid on the next contract goes up in flames

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