If you have yet to notice, the New York Rangers haven’t gotten off to the start they’d hope they would, and seriously, I don’t think anyone thought they’d be 2-6 going into their final road game. So it’s time to ask the questions “what’s wrong with this team?” And “what do we do to turn the season around?” Here’s a few routes we can take (no, I will not include trading Henrik Lundqvist again, so don’t freak out).
First, this is more of a pipe dream than anything, get rid of Glen Sather. He’s been part of this organization for 14 years now and has yet to put together a championship caliber team, a team that has the scoring talent and the depth to consistently go deep into the playoffs. ie: Chicago Blackhawks, Boston Bruins, Detroit Red Wings. But, considering that Sather will probably stick around forever, I’ll explore other options.
The second option is to fire Alain Vigneault. Now look I understand if you don’t want to jump on the “Fire Vigneault” bandwagon already, and I was the biggest supporter of Vigneault coming to New York. However, maybe we were wrong, I understand that his system differs extremely from John Tortorella’s so it takes time to adjust, but the team is not getting it and is flopping around like a fish out of water on the ice because of it. Instead of stamping his feet around and saying “my teams compete, my system works, my teams are hard to play against” get out there and do something, SHOW us, or get off the bench.
The third and most probable option here is to trade, there’s a few options (and a rumor that the Rangers are shopping for Thomas Vanek). Some pieces we should consider.
-Michael Del Zotto and Benoit Pouliot. Seriously what do they do on the team that makes them desirable?
-Dan Girardi and Marc Staal. Woah I know. I was viciously opposed to this idea when it was first brought to my attention, but think about it, the two of them look LOST, scary lost on the ice now and it’s embarrassing, Carolina would probably jump at the opportunity to complete their Staal collection, and Girardi still has some trade value.
-Derek Stepan, someone sit down and have a talk with Stepan, let him know that if he doesn’t improve his game and EARN the money he so strongly fought for, he’s gone.
The fourth option is a painful one, and would be strongly benefitted by going through with the first and second. Admit defeat and start the rebuild. The team only has 8 players signed into next season. You can trade those away or build around them. Focus on the youth, they have some solid depth and scoring talent in Hartford and have the pieces to trade for more. However the talent we do have down there will one day be able to do great things with players like Chris Kreider, JT Miller, Oscar Lindberg, Brandon Mashinter, Dylan McIlrath, etc. Get some draft picks, draft good names and build.
The last option? Bring back Sean Avery. I’m only half serious, but he would bring a much needed spark to the team.