Originally written on Bleeding All Blue  |  Last updated 4/22/12
At the end of last month I did something I never thought I would do and which was to advise Glen Sather to go out and spend money on a free agent.  The caveat of course being this was not a high priced NHL free agent but rather an undrafted free agent playing for the Chilliwack Bruins of the WHL, Brandon Manning.  Manning is the Captain of the Bruins and as a 20 year old defenseman is tearing apart the WHL so far this season with 10 goals, 16 assists, a plus 5 rating and 57 penalty minutes in just 20 games.  In writing that article just over three weeks ago I finished it by saying the following:
I do not ask Glen Sather for much in terms of things I actually want him to go out and spend money on but this player is one I will. Manning will undoubtedly win his bet on himself and make more than he would have signing in camp, but that number is only increasing daily so time to pony up before someone else does.
Fast forward three weeks to the other day when I was writing about the scoring race among Rangers prospects and in discussing manning I talked about how someone reminded me not to get too excited about him until he actually signed, but that I could not help it.  I went on, “When you see a player playing as well as Manning is this season and your team has the potential to sign him you have to get excited even if it means you are disappointed if it falls through.”  This morning both my worry of three weeks ago and the reality of the disappointment would become crystalized as it was announced that Brandon Manning signed a three year contact with another club and if that was not bad enough it would have to be the Philadelphia Flyers.  If those things were not bad enough the figures from capgeek twist the knife a little deeper as the 3 year deal is worth a grand total of 2.145 million and a cap hit of 715K a year.
I know that some Rangers fans will tell me he is just a player in Juniors and who knows what will come of him and that the Rangers have plenty of defensive prospects.  All of those things are true, but when you have the ability to sign a player with his upside, especially for a very reasonable sum, you have to take that chance every time.  The Rangers do possess a number of defensive prospects, but as I wrote just three days ago, “If this young man does sign with the Rangers he easily becomes the Rangers best defensive prospect as he is the most complete of all of them and would climb the rankings to maybe be the best prospect overall they have right now.”  The Rangers possess a myriad of defensive prospects who all have their own specialties, but there is not one prospect in this system that has the total package Brandon Manning possesses in his ability offensively, defensively, leadership and even fighting.
As much as people talk about the huge blunders that Sather has made over the years in the draft or free agency, moves like these hurt just as much long term even if they are sparsely covered or talked about.  Just sad to see a rival organization like the Flyers run better than the Rangers are and then people wonder why their results on the ice are better too.
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

Mich. St. upset with Michigan over spear planted on field

TCU puts up 82 points in win over Texas Tech

Agent: Joe Maddon prepared to sit out season if need be

Report: Chandler Jones could miss rest of season

Report: Army football enticed recruits with alcohol, women

Report: Kobe viewed Dwight Howard's departure as 'positive'

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Lions suspend CJ Mosley, send him home from London

Federal judge blocks New Jersey sports betting law

Report: Bucs sign Gerald McCoy to seven-year extension

Tim Tebow lectures Florida fans about booing

Report: Shonn Greene arrested after parking in handicap spot

Report: Joe Maddon wants a very hefty salary

Miss. St. returns onside kick for TD in win over Kentucky

Couple dresses up in Ray Rice Blackface Halloween costume

WATCH: Kentucky DB Blake McClain lays out Miss. St. WR

WATCH: Dwyane Wade videobombs himself

GRAPHIC: Cam Atkinson shows how close he was to losing eye

WATCH: 350-pound Arkansas lineman throws TD pass

Penn State fans blew air horns outside Ohio State's hotel?

WATCH: Oregon's Charles Nelson has impressive punt return TD

WATCH: American flag rips during Game 3 national anthem

WATCH: Tony Parker draws foul by simply yelling 'hey'

Video: Tom Izzo takes the stage with KISS on Midnight Madness

Eight NFL records that won’t be broken for a long time

NHL News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

Couple in Ray Rice Blackface costume

Report: Army enticed recruits with alcohol, women

Penn State fans blew air horn at Ohio State players' hotel?

Tim Tebow lectures Florida fans

Trouble for Bruins: Chara out 4-6 weeks

Joe Maddon opts out of contract with Rays

NBA Replay Center debuts next week

World Series win = Giants dynasty?

Reliving the worst college football game of the last 10 years

NFL teams facing must-win scenarios in Week 8

What the return of Luis Suarez means for Barcelona

Programs with a lot on the line this week

Today's Best Stuff
For Bloggers

Join the Yardbarker Network for more promotion, traffic, and money.

Company Info
Help
What is Yardbarker?

Yardbarker is the largest network of sports blogs and pro athlete blogs on the web. This site is the hub of the Yardbarker Network, where our editors and algorithms curate the best sports content from our network and beyond.