Originally posted on Blue Seat Blogs  |  Last updated 12/23/11

NEWARK, NJ - NOVEMBER 11: Steve Eminger #7 of the Anaheim Ducks skates against the New Jersey Devils at the Prudential Center on November 11, 2009 in Newark, New Jersey. The Devils defeated the Ducks 3-1. (Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images)
The Rangers blue line could look a lot different in the summer of 2012. There’s a chance that next season the Rangers will start six defensemen that have seen the ice this in New York season but don’t expect that six to include Steve Eminger, Anton Stralman and Jeff Woywitka. All three journeyman pros have expiring contracts and are likely to be let go; at most one may be retained. Also with an expiring deal is Mike Del Zotto but barring something totally unexpected the talented youngster will get a new deal thanks to his rebound season, especially the way he is improving with each game this season. Complicating what is beginning to look like an audition process for a depth spot on defense is the sudden emergence of Stu Bickel. It may be highly premature to call it an ‘emergence’ but Bickel has shown a willingness to scrap, has chipped in offensively, kept it simple and for the most part has stepped up and looked capable at the NHL level. With every additional game Bickel impresses ...
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