Barnaby and Barnaby63, you might want to
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01-02-2004, 10:37 AM
Join Date: Mar 2002
Location: Helsinki, Finland
Okay, I might as well dip in here to lay my two cents about Marek again on the table.
Marek was visited in Finland by Rangers staff well before the 2001 Draft, as I quite clearly remember there being an article in the finnish paper about Rangers being interested in him and having talks with him. As always in the case of overage draft picks, the NHL team came to negotiate first to make sure the player is willing to come over. Marek was willing to come and the Rangers drafted him. After that, Rangers never made an offer good enough to bring him over (meanwhile shoveling ludicrous amounts to likes of Oliwa for example) so saying "never wanted to sign with New York and didnt need his type of play anyway" is a bit over the top. And if we "didnt need his type of play anyway", then how come we shipped Mike York to Alberta for the services of Tom Poti ? In the words of Glen Sather, 'because we needed a puck moving defenseman who can work the powerplay'.
I admit I didn't post any updates to the original thread after somewhile and yes, Marek tailed off from the point-per-game start he had. I've still followed all the boxscores and reports from the Predators' games to see how he is doing but posting updates in here would be just opening old wounds in these discussions. So has Marek gone sour now after the hot start ? Well, if playing 20 minutes a night means Nashville has lost confidence in him then yes. Last I heard he was improving his defensive game and adjusting to the North American rink while still doing his thing on the PP as usual. And as he did in Finland, he still continues to play bigger than his size, something that cannot be said from a few "defenseman" that hang around the MSG blueline.
So far this season Marek has racked up 8 goals and 15 assists for 23 points in 37 games. Out of those points, he has 6g 10a on powerplay which leaves us with 2g 5 assists on even strength (no pk points for him this season). He is still tied 5th in points for defensemen and considering the fact that Marek is averaging 19:41 a game while others in the Top-20 of D-men scoring are mostly going 25+ mins a game, he is doing okay. And last night, two assists (on PP) in a 3-2 win and the 2nd star of the game
I'm just happy he is doing fine and crafting a promising looking NHL career for himself. It's just funny to look around the NHL nowadays and see lots of players making decent careers out there after being traded away from the Rangers in "steals" and "great trades" that have gotten our team so far these past few years....Yes, the bottom line is that we haven't made smart trades to improve the _team_ but rather gone for the "big names" others were trying to offload. I can't really credit Sather for improving much these past years. We have more "names" and "stars" but where has it taken us so far ?
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