Thread: So What's Next?
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08-12-2006, 10:17 AM
  #12
jas
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fletch View Post
I agree about the center (and thought that was a position that should've been targeted in the UFA market), but I think at this point there's enough depth all around to fill in the position. The second line center position is really in question. If it's not Immonen, it's easily Cullen. If the third is not Immonen and the second is Cullen, then the third is Betts, who did it last season. And when he went down, the team did fine as Ward, at times, showed he can play there and Hall too can play there. I'm sure there's a fourth line centerman, even if it's Hollweg, who can play center, within the system. Not perfect, but there are a lot of scenarios for centermen. While there's no way of knowing what player may become available, with the quality of wingers and goaltending, this team hopefully can afford to see what it has at center, at least in the first couple months, prior to making a move.
I think the Rangers will see what they have in camp, see what's available from other teams at the end of the pre-season and move accordingly. Truth be told, I'd LOVE to see Dubinsky impress the staff enough to become a viable option for 2nd line center at some point during the season. And, what I'd ideally like to see at some point is a lineup as follows:

Prucha/Nylander/Jagr
Shanny/Dubi/Hall or Ward
Dawes/Cullen/Ward or Hall
Hollweg/Betts/Moore

My insertion of Prucha would be the likelihood of Straka avoiding the injury bug two years in a row.

I'd also love to see Baranka take enough of a step forward during the season and force management to move some like Rozsival or Malik to make space.

(Note: this is not what I see happening; rather, it's what I'd like to see happen.)

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