Saturday, September 19, 2009

A Big Day for the Rangers

Today was a crazy day for the New York Rangers.
After an absolutely horrible loss to the Detroit Red Wings on Friday night, the Rangers traveled to Boston to take on the Bruins for the second time this preseason.
However, before the game, the team was able to re-sign Brandon Dubinsky to a two year deal with a cap hit of $1.85 million each year. Not a terrible salary for Dubinsky who was supposedly looking for somewhere in the vicinity of four years $16 million. General Manager Glen Sather and the Rangers bumped themselves up about one million to meet Dubinsky's demands which are pretty reasonable. However he will have to prove that he is worth this money. The Rangers are putting faith in him to be an important piece to the team. No doubt this will help Head Coach John Tortorella round out his roster.
Speaking of rounding out the roster, the Rangers made a few more cuts after today's big win over the Bruins. Heading to the Hartford Wolf Pack training camp are Chad Johnson, Matt Zaba, Ilkka Heikkinen, Corey Potter, and Paul Crowder. It must have been tough to send down two defensemen like Heikkinen and Potter who both played very well in the preseason. However with the logjam on the blue line, Tortorella was forced to make a decision and he made the right one. The young blue liners left in the Ranger training camp are Matt Gilroy, Michael Del Zotto, and Bobby Sanguinetti.
Today's game was absolutely great. From Artem Anisimov's highlight reel goal, which you can see here, to the power play the Rangers had everything going well for them. You have to wonder if John Tortorella looked at today's defense, without Wade Redden and Michal Rozsival, and wishes they could maybe go away. It is wishful thinking those veteran defensemen will be gone before the beginning of the season but maybe a seed has been planted for the future seeing how the defense fared today.
It should now be an interesting week for Ranger fans. From waiting to see when Marian Gaborik plays in a preseason game (possibly Monday) to which of the young defensemen (Michael Del Zotto, Matt Gilroy, Bobby Sanguinetti) will make the team, and how Brandon Dubinsky will mesh with Gaborik. We are just under two weeks from starting the regular season. The air is beginning to get is almost hockey time.

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