Yes Ozo was a premier defenceman, nominated for the Norris Trophy at San Jose, won a Stanley Cups at Colorado, and was part of the stingy defence that took Anaheim to the finals. But athletes lose it and some know when to quit and some don't. If he's still got it, then he can contribute a lot;if not, say good-bye.
San Jose had 44 hits, with Ville leading the way with 15, and a number of these were hard slams on Pronger. Dumping him was stupid if the Rangers even then were serious about the playoffs, it was even worse than giving up Garth Murray, who filled a similar role with the Habs, for absolutely nothing.
he started the season aggressive, went to the box a lot early, and played tentative for much of the way as a result - while still heading to the box. He had a tough time adjusting to the new rules - and I wouldn't say he was dogging it out there at all.
He def showed up last night... He threw a few really good ones, i was shcoked to see him out there double shifted to end the game, considering he was never used in that role with the Rangers. Kinda weird how a player is used differently team to team. But then again he didnt show what he showed last night with the Rangers. Why not VILLE!!!!??
He'd have added "Noozolinsh" to the team. Little known, but very valuable and effective player. In the end though it doesn't make any difference to the final result because the Rangers couldn't score anyway.
it's not really what he would've added instead of Hollweg, but what he could've provided in addition to Hollweg, especially after Ward went down. Hossa did pretty well, but would the Rangers have been better off with a guy like Niemo (considering Hossa did generate zero points). Obviously it would not have changed the outcome, but one could make an argument that he may've been a decent fit to play on Betts' left side.
Nieminen's play was subpar at least half the time here. He was sat several times. He never really found his niche. FWIW there was logic to the deal that brought Ozo here--it just didn't work out either. We tried to pick up a pwp qb on the the cheap maybe underestimating how well he would fit in or maybe Ozo's game is just declining--he's been around for a while. Whatever the reason I'm pretty sure the way other things went that even if that deal hadn't been made we'd had been knocked out pretty easily anyway with losing Jagr and Ward and with Kaspar, Lundqvist, Prucha, Rucinsky and Rucchin as banged up as they were.
I liked Ville while he was here, but as the season wore on it was apparent that he didn't really bring anything we didn't already have. We had Hollweg, Orts, Moore, Ward and Bets who played pretty similar to him, at least Orts and Hollweg, and he wasn't really skilled enough to be an offensive threat. However, after looking back at how Ozo self destructed and played some of the worst professional hockey I have ever seen, I take Ville over Ozo anyway.
Oh yeah, I'm also one in the majority who want absolutely nothing to do with Ozo, I wan't him gone.
look niemmen became expendable because hollweg was doing what niemmen could not do here on a regular basis, play every shift, throw his body around, and be smart in the defensive zone and avoid penalties
niemmen took far too many penalties and was very lazy at times here, hollweg was the reason he was moved
i wont say that niemmen wasnt motivated because i dont know that, but he became expendable when hollweg began to do his job and not take bad penalties
i wish niemmen well, i liked him and wanted us to sign him, but him being dealt (essentially for ozo) is hindsight, which is always 20/20
slats always makes a good deal followed by a bad one, this year it was drats for sykora followed by niemmen for ozo (even though it was niemo for a pick and the pick for ozo)
hes due for a good trade so his next one should be a good one
It's the way it goes, teams need alot of different elements to work right. Sometimes players go on to do very well elsewhere, but I'd rather have a ex-Ranger do very well somewhere else, than drag the team down. Niems wasn't working here, so I'm not missing him any.