Originally posted on The Rangers Tribune  |  Last updated 10/31/11

We got news late Sunday afternoon that the New York Rangers have plans to place forward Sean Avery, currently in the AHL with the Connecticut Whale, on re-entry waivers sometime today (most likely around noon). It will take 24 hours for Sean to clear through the waiver process, assuming he is not claimed by another team for half price, therefore making him eligible to join the squad for Thursday's match-up with the Anaheim Ducks at Madison Square Garden. Many see this as a conciliatory move by the Blueshirts that will re-unite them with their number one pest, leaving the past behind. That, though, is far from the case. 

When a player on the NHL squad is injured, the Rangers look for the best possible player with the Whale that they could recall to fill the spot. The problem is, many times the best player is also a developing prospect, making them off-limits since playing them fourth line minutes in the NHL will be detrimental to their development. For example, John Tortorella said yesterday that the Rangers had considered recalling Mats Zuccarello once Kris Newbury was sent down, but realizing that he could not guarantee any ice time, they went with Andre Deveaux instead. 

That is the angle you also have to look at the Sean Avery situation from. With Mike Rupp out of the lineup for an undetermined amount of time due to a struggling knee, Avery is the best possible option to fill Rupp's spot/role, and the coach, by no means, feels obligated to give him a certain amount of ice time. This may not be the perfect way of saying it, but basically, Avery is being used while Rupp is out. Now there is a chance that Rupp is out long-term, which many play into Sean's favor, but right now it's unknown just how long it will take the enforcer to return. 

Now don't get me wrong here, I am happy that the Rangers recalled Avery since I, too, am a big Avery supporter and appreciate what he adds to the team (Lord knows that's more than Erik Christensen). But at the same time, I realize that this does not mean mission accomplished for Sean. He's the same player that was cut by the team four weeks ago, he's the same player Tortorella stated was not good enough for the Rangers, and he's the same player that was never given a fair chance here in New York. None of that has changed, so don't expect it to. 

Avery is not going to enter Thursday's game and score five goals to defeat the Ducks and win over the heart of John Tortorella - it's just not going to happen. He's not going to suddenly be given a spot on the first line with Marian Gaborik to see if he fits there. Hell, I'll be surprised if he plays more than eight to ten minutes per game. I think by now that you should all be catching my drift with what I am trying to do here. 

I don't want fans to get overly excited about Avery being recalled and then be left in disappointment and anger when he is given the same treatment the coaching staff gave him before he was assigned to the Whale. I don't want fans to be disappointed when Sean is returned to the AHL if/when Mike Rupp is in game-shape again. That's not fair to you. 

But for now, enjoy Avery as a Ranger while it lasts. That is, of course, if he clears through re-entry waivers over the next two days. 

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