As the summer heats up the Rangers are looking for the right pieces to fix the problem now and for the future. The signing of Mark Messier was one move that was welcomed by all in Rangerland but the signing of enigmatic Vlad.Malakhov is one that caused the good shipmate Schneider too look elsewhere for employment and so continues the questions of which direction the Rangers are headed.
RANGERS INK 3:
The Rangers, a club last year without heart went out and bought some as well as healed some wounds with the signing of the old warrior Mark Messier which brought many smiles to the faces of the New York faithful and sent a message to the kids in the system that “you are atleast two years away from having a shot in the show”!. Messier bring the lockerroom leadership that the blue shirts so badly needed last season and joy to the vendors as his no.11 will sell like hot cakes once they are ready for sale.
One has to question the direction Glen Sather is taking. The move to hire Ron Low, everyone`s second candidate instead of John Paddock, Kevin Lowe or even John Tortella was the first shot. The second is the signing of another project in Vladimir Malakhov while dumping the one defender who cared last season Mathieu Schneider… the signing of Messier was agreeable on all sides the youth question was again brought up. As the Rangers dumped top collegiate scout Herb Hammond and goalie coach Sam St.Laurent the two who actually made the Smith drafts acceptable, Glen Sather and his lackluster drafting ability took control of the ship Ranger and placed even more pressure on Mark Messier, moreso than was placed on him prior to the 1994 Cup victory.
One expects many more moves to be made and do not be suprised if Petr Nedved is part of a package. Thus with the 2000-01 season approaching one has to look through the depth chart and list the young players in the system with a shot at the “show”.
The 2000 Entry NHL draft has ended and left the Rangers, now under a new
President and General Manager in basically the same “small” spot as they
were the day before the first round began. Once again the Rangers
“management” decided against size and went with the smallish underweight,
undersized players that they have drafted in greater numbers over the bigger
more physical players needed to compete in the Eastern Conference of the
National Hockey League.
With their highest pick being in the 2nd round, ala all that is left from
the Pavel Brendl spot from Tampa for Niklas Sundstrøm and Daniel Cloutier,
Glen Sather after being thwarted in his bid to acquire ex.Bolt and current
Islander (past-Oiler) Roman Hamrlik a smooth skating defensive project now
making his home on Long Island with the nemesis N.Y.Islanders in a deal that
sent prospects Josh Green and Eric Brewer to the cost conscious Oilers,
Sather packaged the Rangers 2nd rounder to Detroit for their 2nd rounder and
3rd rounder. With these picks, the Rangers selected:
Country: Czech. Republic
Height: 6 00
Birthdate: May 7 1982
League: WHL (Canadian Juniors)
Team: Regina Pats
CSS final ranking #33 … seventh in team scoring this season … played in
the 2000 NHL/CHL Top Prospects Game … was the WHL’s Rookie of the Month Read more»
With no first round pick or third round pick coming into the NHL draft, the Rangers had all of their draft day eggs in one basket within the second round. They traded that pick to the Detroit Red Wings for their second and third round choices. With wingers Ben Knopp and David Morriset waiting to be called, the Rangers pulled a little bit of a surprise and chose Regina Pats Defenseman Filip Novak. In a case stated in the Draft preview it was was simply the Rangers drafting whom they felt was the best player at that time.
When the 1999 NHL draft came and went everyone seemed excited with the idea that the Rangers had managed to reel in two blue chip prospects. One fact that was ignored however, was that the cost of adding these players was the loss of a first round pick in the 2000 draft. The Rangers would have drafted 8th overall and they may have ended up with a solid player, but the fact of the matter is the 1999 draft was far superior to the 2000 version in both depth and initial talent levels. A year later the Rangers have two kids who should fight for an NHL spot while it appears Tampa Bay will merely get a “good” player with a chance at the NHL. While nothing is for certain the Rangers should end up with the better end of the stick on this one. With a new GM in the fold the team attempts to pull off the feat of drafting a solid NHL prospect in the second round, something they have had very limited success with in the past 4 years.