(courtesy Phoenix Coyotes)
Okay maybe it's me but am I the only one who's a little confused by the New York Rangers signing Taylor Pyatt? While others are calling it a good depth signing, I'm not so sure about it.
Yes Pyatt has size at 6'4 but are the Rangers signing him to fill which role? Pyatt has never been much of a fighter so we know he's not going to be replacing Prust.
He had just as many goals as Fedotenko did but he needs to speed up just to be known as a average skater. I see people thinking that Pyatt is 6'4 like is the most important thing in the world but really this one is more a replacement for John Mitchell than anybody else.
About the nicest thing that I can say is that Pyatt is that he will at least hit somebody always out on the ice. He's friends with Marc Staal as the two grew up together in Thunder Bay (actually Staal is better friends with Tom Pyatt the younger brother).
Pyatt becomes the third minor signing since July 1 and is probably making most Ranger fans nervous watching the once free spending Rangers turn into bargain shoppers. Now don't get me wrong I'm not saying that this is a bad signing just a puzzling one.
Still one has to admit it's a strange sight seeing the Rangers spending only $11.6 million total on all of their free agents. And I have to think it's kind of funny because all the other NHL general managers must be sitting there wondering when will Glen Sather breakout the checkbook?
Probably the only ones were really happy are the remaining free agents. they will look at the New York Rangers and see that they have almost $16 million in available cap space left to spend.
Don't doubt for a second that NHL agents will be saying "I have an offer from the Rangers" even if it's not true to raise the price tag for their clients.
Tossing out names
So if the New York Rangers lose out on the two biggest free agents of the NHL then who might be considered as possible targets?
- Philadelphia: if I was him I would sit there and sit there until Ryan Suter was signed. There are serious rumors claiming that Detroit is offering Suter close to $8 million the year (or more than double what Carle made last season with the Flyers).
Carle doesn't deserve it but you know somebody's going to pay him 5 million a year once Suter comes off the market. Honestly given a choice of the Rangers current top four defensemen or Carle then I would pass simply because he's not worth more money than Staal, Girardi or next year's RFA Ryan McDonagh.
- Phoenix: if he was not 35 then we could talk about this but when players who are power forwards in the NHL decided to get old; they get old real fast and the Rangers would not be able to dump his salary.
If he was it take a 1-2 year contract trying to win a cup then that's a different story but it's kind of scary out there seeing all these free agent contracts that are for the lack of a better term insane.
- Winnipeg: don't laugh as Wellwood is coming off had a career season last year with the Jets and he's not going to be all that expensive considering how fragile his NHL career has been.
Somebody is going to give him 1.5 to 2 million given how hard it is to find free agents under the age of 30. It fits in with Glen Sather's coupon cutting campaign of this year and I could live with him centering the third line if he can repeat 18 goals.
- Nashville: I put his name in here just to see how many people I could get to spit out their AM coffee all over their computer. If you're still reading this then yes I do have a sick sense of humor.
Of course if the Rangers were to sign him then it's all the other bloggers fault because they made me think about him.
If you really want something that will scare you then look at how many unrestricted free agents there are over the age of 30 still out there just waiting to be signed
To trade or not to trade
What's really scares me the most is how willing some people are to ignore all that the Rangers did last season just so they can trade for Rick Nash or Bobby Ryan. If anything the lessons of the previous years will be lost if the Rangers were to listen to some of their fans and trade away the prospects.
It sounds strange but I have more confidence today that Glen Sather would not include a Derek Stepan, a Tim Erixon or a J.T. Miller in any trade than at any time since he's taken over as general manager. I know the Rangers have a plan to bring in more scoring but I also believe that that plan is based upon not giving away the future.
Too many people have put in way too much effort over the last few years to restock the Rangers and the prospect pipeline to empty it out in just one move.
That one you can take to the bank.
Happy Fourth of July
Thank you to those who make the Fourth of July for all of us possible because of their service to our country.