What words can describe this day? I cannot think of any. Today will go down as the most memorable trade-deadline day for me ever as a Ranger fan. Two days ago the Rangers had a ton of under-achieving stars, no passion in the locker-room, no depth, and a team that seemed destined for failure. Well the mighty Glen Sather had changed all of that within 48 hours. He added Ryane Clowe on Tuesday and added 3 good, solid hockey players from the Blue Jackets. First of all, Glen Sather has proven he is the Jekyll and Hyde of all GM’s in hockey. His free agent signings for the most part have been awful making you wonder “does the man even watch hockey?” But he backs it up with trades where he seems to have a crystal ball in his hands, knowing that he will get amazing talents. Awful with Free Agents, but absolutely amazing with trades. (Jagr, Avery, McDonagh, Prust, and now this) The game against Pittsburgh proved how good of a trade Sather made. I could not decide who was better, Clowe or Brassard? Clowe did so much offensively that we didn’t even see his toughness in this game. He did not need it. As for Brassard I was amazed that the Blue Jackets traded this talent. He could finish and set up so many beautiful plays. All his assists were really pretty. He opened up the ice so much for the team in the offensive zone, something that has been extinct for this club this year. John Moore was very sound defensively and I am thrilled he scored. He will add a lot of offense on the blue line for this team. But who knew this would be the result tonight?
I thought the addition of Clowe would pay off. He needed a change and he is a big time player who performs when it matters in the playoffs. He is big, tough, fast, and can score. He is perfect for Tortorella and Broadway. As I was sitting on my couch today with about 30 minutes to go until the deadline, the Rangers traded Gaborik. So many fans were upset but when I heard who they got in return I was not, in fact I was ecstatic. I feel all of the Blue Jackets players needed a change of scenery and boy did they ever. Derik Brassard is a great center for this Ranger team and has so much potential. He reminds me exactly of Derek Stepan. They are the same player basically. What is more important is that he fills the Ranger’s black hole position this year at Center. The Rangers have been abysmal this yeat at the center position but with the addition of Brassard, that position could be one of their strong points. (Especially if Richards finds his game) Then there was a player who I did not know much about in John Moore. Apparently he hasn’t lived up to expectations in Columbus but this kid will be great. He is only 21 and I feel the Blue Jackets gave up on him way too soon. He reminds me exactly of Tim Erixon who ironically the Rangers traded to Columbus for Rick Nash. He is a great skater, has good awareness, and is such a better option than putting Roman Hamrlik on the ice. And I did not even mention Derek Dorsett. Dorsett is an animal and very much like Brandon Prust. Once he comes back, not only will he be a fan favorite at the Garden, he will contribute with an enormous amount of energy and passion the Rangers have lacked this season. And for the heck of it, let’s talk more about Ryane Clowe. He has so many elements to his game and is so dimensional. He can pretty much do anything and he is a true hockey player.
What was so great about these guys however was not necessarily the fact that they contributed (which was still HUGE) but I was happier of what impact they had on everyone around them. That was Brian Boyle’s best game of the season and I finally noticed Brad Richards on the ice contributing to this team. That is what I am most happy about. The guys were so diverse that they helped other players join the level that these new Rangers were playing at on this night. That is the best sign. Everything that could of gone wrong with the Blueshirts this year has so far. But Wednesday night was a different feel. It was only one game but I feel that the team might just be able to do something special now. As the Ranger’s struggles continued into the middle of the season, many people asked me if I thought the Ranger’s can be the LA Kings of the East this year. I responded by saying in order for that to happen the team would have to make some drastic moves with either changing the coach or changing the players. Well they changed the players, made a drastic change, and the rest is left to be determined to a later date. We will see in the next three months if this team is destined for greatness.