Thursday, June 28, 2007

Comings And Goings

The Ranger plan is now clear heading into free agency. It started with not picking up Karel Rachunek's option for about 1.8 mil and continues in the refusal to sign Michael Nylander prior to the start of the free agency free for all. There are rumors that Nylander has signed an extension. The Rachunek refusal is key on two counts. Number one it opens up 1.8 mil in cap space and number two it opens up a spot on the backline. It gives some hope to Thomas Pock and Marc Staal and other young defensemen trying to make the team.

It is clear that the Rangers are going for the daily double. They want it all. They want both Chris Drury and Scotty Gomez. Guess what? So do Ranger fans. The competition for the services of Drury and Gomez will be fierce. The only advantage the Rangers may have, notice I say may have, is that both have expressed strong opinions about playing for the Rangers. Does this matter? It might if the contract numbers are not too far off.

Can the Rangers afford both? The combined yearly salary of the two will probably run somewhere in the 12-16 million dollar area. Can the Rangers afford to do this? Can they afford not to do it? Should be a most interesting free agency period for Ranger fans.

One sad item of note is that there doesn't seem to be any intention of signing Jed Ortmeyer. I say sad because Ortmeyer is a true Ranger and a big fan favorite who never mails it in and is one of the top penalty killers around and the way the Rangers continue to take stupid penalties he will be sorely missed. Good luck Jed.

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