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The rebuild's over?

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Old
07-10-2006, 12:58 PM
  #26
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fletch View Post
I think the prusuit of second (or third) tier UFAs was the result of them targeting two (Elias and Chara), who were arguably the two top free agents out of this year's crop, and them not getting them, as opposed to consciously targeting those guys. The plan, I believe, was to target the high-end, if they won't come for whatever reason, you're targeting the lower end, because the rest of the top and secondary tiers likely moved on as you cannot target Chara, McKee and Jovo at the same time - gotta pick your spots.
Well why not go after the top guys? They just seemed to have a ceiling that they wouldnt go over to pay for Chara or Elias. They couldn't get those guys for what they were willing to pay? Fine, move on

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07-10-2006, 01:02 PM
  #27
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Johnny...

maybe I misunderstood what you said. You said: "This is evidenced by the decision to pursue free agents such as Matt Cullen and Aaron Ward, second tier guys who won't hamstrung the organization in terms of salary cap, rather than someone like Chara or Pronger ". I'm saying that Chara and Elias were 'pursued,' but for some reason, call it the price, or whatever the case may be, they didn't sign with the Rangers so they moved onto those guys. Cullen and Ward were likely not their top targets, but became the realistic ones after others were gone.

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07-10-2006, 01:09 PM
  #28
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SoS...

I agree with all you said, but I want to put words into Melrose's fingers (or mouth).

What I believe is meant by that statement is that there was little way a rookie was going to come in during training camp and outplay Rucchin and get handed that spot. Why? It's simple: Rucchin, 99 times out of 100, will be given the benefit of the doubt. Training camp is different for different players. For Jagr and vets, it's a chance to get to know new people, learn a new system, get into shape and try not to get injured. For youth, it's a chance to get a look and say 'here I am - there may not be a spot now but remember me when there is,' or they are fighting for a couple spots. Personally, I think Immonen outplayed Rucchin. I think Prucha outplayed Straka (remember, Prucha started the season playing under 8 minutes and also landed in Hartford - and not because he wasn't playing well). I thought Staal played well enough to at least play one more game to see if he can channel his energy a bit differently to not take penalties. I'm not criticizing or judging for these actions, but just commenting that they happened, and for a reason, as Sather and Renney, I believe, thought it was very important to get out of the gate fast and as such, much of the lineup was set from the get-go and he needed to get his opening day guys in sync quicly (and it started out horribly, but was quickly worked out).

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07-10-2006, 01:40 PM
  #29
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Originally Posted by Fletch View Post
I agree with all you said, but I want to put words into Melrose's fingers (or mouth).

What I believe is meant by that statement is that there was little way a rookie was going to come in during training camp and outplay Rucchin and get handed that spot. Why? It's simple: Rucchin, 99 times out of 100, will be given the benefit of the doubt. Training camp is different for different players. For Jagr and vets, it's a chance to get to know new people, learn a new system, get into shape and try not to get injured. For youth, it's a chance to get a look and say 'here I am - there may not be a spot now but remember me when there is,' or they are fighting for a couple spots. Personally, I think Immonen outplayed Rucchin. I think Prucha outplayed Straka (remember, Prucha started the season playing under 8 minutes and also landed in Hartford - and not because he wasn't playing well). I thought Staal played well enough to at least play one more game to see if he can channel his energy a bit differently to not take penalties. I'm not criticizing or judging for these actions, but just commenting that they happened, and for a reason, as Sather and Renney, I believe, thought it was very important to get out of the gate fast and as such, much of the lineup was set from the get-go and he needed to get his opening day guys in sync quicly (and it started out horribly, but was quickly worked out).
I shouldn't have put that comment about Melrose in there anyway. I understand why he said it and you outlined it in your post above. I know i'm not well liked and I'm sure it's because of throwing in comments like that into my posts. They aren't needed. I like most of the posters here even the ones i disagree with on a daily basis. We are all Ranger fans which counts for something in my book...

Back on topic

I think rebuilding in New York isn't like rebuilding in any other town. I'm sure Sather would never admit it but getting a 100 points last season could very well be a mirage. I think he sees that which is why the Rangers didn't go after Pronger (The Rangers could've matched that package without taking a major hit) and didn't sign the second tier guys to first tier contracts. (all for signing chara or elias but jay mckee at 4 million and kubina at 5 million is just nuts)

This was a great topic to bring up though Fletch.

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07-10-2006, 01:46 PM
  #30
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The thing is, this team still have a lot of young players.

You've got Lundqvist, Prucha, Tyutin, Moore, Betts, and Hollweg who are only enterting their second full NHL seasons.

You've got Staal, Dubinsky, Greg Moore, Immonen, Dawes and Helminen who are going to get some long looks and some may make the team.

You've also got names like Baranka, Sauer, Dupont, etc. etc. who are all developing.

It's not unrealistic to say the Rangers might have as many as 10-12 homegrown players on their roster within the next two years.

But also being realistic, under the absolute BEST, lights-out, can't ask for better scenario maybe about 40% of these kids are even NHL players. Of that, it's pretty unrealistic to think that all of them are even going to be Rangers. Some will be traded, etc.

I think the rebuild is still on-going, the difference is that the new car smell has faded away. Now that the hype of the kids coming out of juniors or the draft if finished, the slow, boring development part has to happen.

But that's the part that the hype usually doesn't extend to so we lose sight of it.

At the end of the day the Rangers have only scraped the tip of the iceburg with their prospects. Their is still a long ways to go and we haven't seen the top kids yet.

Personally I don't want Rucinsky at this point, but if the Rangers stop where they are today I'm pretty happy.

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07-10-2006, 01:47 PM
  #31
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Although there are different definitions for "rebuilding", what I think the Rangers have tried to do is rebuild the organization.

Since the 03-04 trade deadline, the Rangers have for the most part held onto draft picks and prospects and signed free agents to mostly lower salary and low year deals. They have built up their farm system, established a feeder system capable of sending in reinforcements when the big club needs them and given younger players the shot to make the big team and contribute on a regular basis. Trades and bigger dips into free agency will surely come but at least the Rangers will do it from a position of strength. In the past, the cupboard was left bare as part of the "win now" mentality (which wound up really meaning "lose now" and "lose later"). That focus on only the present is why the Rangers roster lacks a healthy number of young vets with a few NHL seasons of experience.

Most successful organizations use all the different channels to acquire talent (i.e. the draft, farm system, free agency and trades). I think the Rangers are on that successful path - but only time will tell.

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07-10-2006, 01:49 PM
  #32
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I think we also have to remember just how young these kids are.

Some of these kids are barely old enough to drink, others aren't even that old yet.

We're starting to enter the time when some of the early bloomers will make it, but realistically some of these kids aren't even going to be challanging for roster spots till 2008.

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07-10-2006, 01:52 PM
  #33
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SingnBluesOnBroadway View Post
My short answer would be that the rebuild should never be over. This team should always have a well-stocked system.
This cannot be emphasized enough.

At all.

Seriously, this is the strategy I think we will be finally employing here as well.

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Old
07-10-2006, 01:56 PM
  #34
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Edge View Post
It's not unrealistic to say the Rangers might have as many as 10-12 homegrown players on their roster within the next two years.

But also being realistic, under the absolute BEST, lights-out, can't ask for better scenario maybe about 40% of these kids are even NHL players. Of that, it's pretty unrealistic to think that all of them are even going to be Rangers. Some will be traded, etc.
And don't forget that even if the Rangers were to put together a mostly homegrown roster brimming with talent, the salary cap and younger free agency rules would probably cause that team to be dismantled before long.

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07-10-2006, 02:00 PM
  #35
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Originally Posted by Fletch View Post
maybe I misunderstood what you said. You said: "This is evidenced by the decision to pursue free agents such as Matt Cullen and Aaron Ward, second tier guys who won't hamstrung the organization in terms of salary cap, rather than someone like Chara or Pronger ". I'm saying that Chara and Elias were 'pursued,' but for some reason, call it the price, or whatever the case may be, they didn't sign with the Rangers so they moved onto those guys. Cullen and Ward were likely not their top targets, but became the realistic ones after others were gone.
No offense Fletch, but most of that is speculation. None of us have any idea what real interest the Rangers had in anyone, including Chara and Elias. The Rangers could have simply been inquiring about their availablity and price (maybe in an attempt to drive up the eventual buyers cost, which would be an excellent idea in Elias' case) or they may have written them both blank checks and got turned down. Maybe its somewhere in between. Regardless, the only thing we are sure of are the results, which seem to fall pretty much in line with what Rangers Mgmt has been saying all along.

Sometimes it seems like speculation is only a valid argument when it goes AGAINST Sather and Co.

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07-10-2006, 02:11 PM
  #36
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I understand it's speculation...

of course it would also be speculation to say the Rangers pursued only Ward and Cullen only and didn't seriously pursue other UFAs, no? Of course you follow-up my speculation with more pure speculation.

And driving up prices is a risky game - what happens when someone calls you on your offer? Do you say just kidding? I don't know if GMs play that game too much.

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07-10-2006, 02:16 PM
  #37
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Originally Posted by Melrose_Jr. View Post
BUT, that is a rebuilding strategy. They do have several young players with a lot of NHL experience and a group of prospects any other team can only dream about.

I think the whole concept of "not rushing youth" is overstated though.
It's entirely overstated. There's a near-hysteria built around the idea that if you expose kids to a losing situation, their careers are over. They'll get burned out; they'll "learn to lose" (a laughable idea); insert next myth here. Generally when I toss off a couple of names disproving this mostly the Ottawa kids) I get, "Well those are EXCEPTIONAL players. Normal guys couldn't do that."

Horse crap. One need only look for the common element of the bad team for which these kids started their careers to label it horse crap.

Mike York - Marc Savard - Eric Cairns - Kim Johnsson - Manny Malhotra - Mikael Samuelsson - Alexei Yashin - Alex Daigle - Pavol Demitra - Sean Hill - Radek Bonk - Dan Alfredsson - Wade Redden - Shaun van Allen - Bob Dollas - Bob Corkum - Paul Kariya - Steve Rucchin - Oleg Tverdovsky.

All these guys began their careers on crappy teams; all have had NHL careers of at least average length; the mix of "exceptional" players, good players, and role players is clear. The list was compiled by looking at three teams. Three. Add in Atlanta, Minnesota, Chicago, Winnipeg, Quebec, Jersey in its losing years, Philly in its losing years, etc, etc, etc and it becomes patently clear that the idea of the damage of "rushing kids" is overblown.

Do you want to want to make a 21-year-old rookie Mike York the guy that saves your team? No. But the assumption too often seems to be made that if you're playing a young guy, he's going to "have the pressure of saving the franchise" on his shoulders.

Nonsense. He'll have as much pressure as the coaches put on him.

Dubinski is 20. Greg Moore is 22. Dawes is 21. Helminen is 23. Baranka is 21. Immonen is 24.

These are not weaklings or wallflowers or little children who are going to be destoyed by playing for a .500 team.

I'll write what I've written before. The Rangers are doing EXACTLY what the Flyers are doing: hanging on to their youth while picking up vet talent to help their season. The Rangers choose to call this "re-building." The Flyers will not.

Anyone here inclined to say the Flyers are a rebuilding team? Because if they are not, neither are the Rangers.

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07-10-2006, 02:17 PM
  #38
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Son of Steinbrenner View Post
What i can't stand is the "you must lose in order to rebuild" posts or worse "Youth MUST BE handed jobs" posts. As if competition is ever a bad thing and my stance of let them earn spot has been ripped apart by people forever. I can remember during the first preseason game last year Melrose mocking me for saying "kids need to earn there ice time" Oh well the good news is the Rangers seem to agree with me on this point.
My perspective was, and is, a team in the infancy of it's rebuild should be committed to measuring the development of prospects who are approaching the beginning of their NHL career. "Handing" a player a spot is not the same as leaving a spot open for someone to earn.

Hey man, last year was a lot of fun and probably just the kind of PR season the Rangers. At the end of the day, I think the team could have done more for it's future by focusing a little more on development without dramatically compromising the product on the ice .

Dislike you? Who dislikes you?

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07-10-2006, 02:28 PM
  #39
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SingnBluesOnBroadway View Post
My short answer would be that the rebuild should never be over. This team should always have a well-stocked system.
Right on... like how the Avalanche always seem to have a rookie come in and put up big numbers for them thats how it should be done.

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07-10-2006, 02:56 PM
  #40
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Originally Posted by Jon Prescription View Post
This cannot be emphasized enough.

At all.

Seriously, this is the strategy I think we will be finally employing here as well.

I agree with this as well. It's not enough to have a few good years at the draft table - it has to happen consistently.

Smart asset management is the only thing that leads to a "dynasty."

While there may never be any true dynasties again, we can hope to become perennial contenders in the mold of the Detroits and New Jerseys of the league. We can only dream that our worst years are as 8th seeds, and best years as Cup champs.

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07-10-2006, 03:00 PM
  #41
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Originally Posted by Fletch View Post
of course it would also be speculation to say the Rangers pursued only Ward and Cullen only and didn't seriously pursue other UFAs, no? Of course you follow-up my speculation with more pure speculation.

And driving up prices is a risky game - what happens when someone calls you on your offer? Do you say just kidding? I don't know if GMs play that game too much.
I wasnt speculating at all. I have no idea what the Rangers were thinking, as is the same with most people here. It could be anything, and there is no sense in getting in a tizzy over it. The people on here who scolded fans for being too happy about Maloney and Sather "saying the right things", are the people who are bashing the Rangers for a bunch of offers the Rangers may or may not have made. As I said, all we have is what actually happened.

As for driving up prices on players, I would imagine it happens quite frequently, from both sides. Elias just mentions he would consider playing for the Rangers and whats the result? Both sides go wild. I dont think you need to go so far as to offer a player a contract and then snatch it away at the last minute, so much as you need to feign interest. Of course thats just speculation...

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07-10-2006, 03:01 PM
  #42
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Originally Posted by BigE View Post
While there may never be any true dynasties again, we can hope to become perennial contenders in the mold of the Detroits and New Jerseys of the league.
Naysayers and disappointed NHLPA shills (I'm looking at you, Brooks) like to cry about this, but I just don't see it. The NFL works under a more stringent cap and it certainly didn't stopped the Pats from building a dynasty. To a lesser extent the Eagles have been highly competitive for years.

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07-10-2006, 03:06 PM
  #43
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dedalus View Post
Naysayers and disappointed NHLPA shills (I'm looking at you, Brooks) like to cry about this, but I just don't see it. The NFL works under a more stringent cap and it certainly didn't stopped the Pats from building a dynasty. To a lesser extent the Eagles have been highly competitive for years.
Hopefully players will take discounts to be on our team like the Pats have the luxory of.

I'd love to see that. It seems as if Shanny did that for us, so hopefully the Yoots see that as something they can do in the future.

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07-10-2006, 03:19 PM
  #44
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Elias mentioning that he'd play for the Rangers...

and Sather offering Elias a contract purposely to drive up the cost of Elias to the Devils are two totally different concepts. The agent will always try to play an offer off another, and at times will make offers up to drive up the price of his player, but both are different than Sather throwing in a bona fide offer with the main goal of driving up the price for the competition, since, if the offer is accepted, he drives up the cost for himself, no?

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07-10-2006, 03:22 PM
  #45
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fletch View Post
of course it would also be speculation to say the Rangers pursued only Ward and Cullen only and didn't seriously pursue other UFAs, no?
I think you're right. They did and failed. How come Shanahan signing coinsided so much with Havlat trade? I think Slats couldn't get Havlat for some reasons and settled with Shanny instead.

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07-10-2006, 03:37 PM
  #46
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Originally Posted by Jon Prescription View Post
Hopefully players will take discounts to be on our team like the Pats have the luxory of.
The same thing has happened with the Eagles in football and the Lakers and of course the Yanks (where there is no cap). I'm sure there are plenty of other examples.

Dynasties aren't dead but they might be tougher to build/maintain.

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07-10-2006, 04:13 PM
  #47
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Originally Posted by Fletch View Post
and Sather offering Elias a contract purposely to drive up the cost of Elias to the Devils are two totally different concepts. The agent will always try to play an offer off another, and at times will make offers up to drive up the price of his player, but both are different than Sather throwing in a bona fide offer with the main goal of driving up the price for the competition, since, if the offer is accepted, he drives up the cost for himself, no?
Who said anything about a "bona fide offer"? I assume there is a difference between offering a player a contract and inquiring about a players willingness to play for a team, as well as finding out what the player expects in terms of money, years, no-trade clauses, etc. Just hearing that the Rangers would be interested in signing Elias, (and of course that that Elias would be willing to sign with the Rangers) might be enough to make the Devils step up their efforts to get Elias signed, in turn making them up their offer.

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07-10-2006, 04:24 PM
  #48
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Sorry...

somehow misunderstood you. Not sure why I thought it, but thought that the Rangers were offering and thus driving up prices, not inquiring. Agreed about inquiring, but of course these guys get inquiries from nearly every team (didn't Chara say he fielded offers from 21 teams?) so it's tough to say the real effect, but I would agree that there is an effect.

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07-10-2006, 04:38 PM
  #49
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Fletch- Good quality post and a great read, keep em comming!

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07-10-2006, 06:20 PM
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Originally Posted by dedalus View Post
The same thing has happened with the Eagles in football and the Lakers and of course the Yanks (where there is no cap). I'm sure there are plenty of other examples.

Dynasties aren't dead but they might be tougher to build/maintain.
Being highly competitive for many years and winning consecutively for many years are two very different things.

No one would consider the Eagles a dynasty, and most have a hard time even calling the Pats a dynasty (although 3 trophies in 4 years is certainly worth consideration).

My point was, and I'm not sure that you're actually willing to disagree, is that the Rangers (just like every other team) can only hope to become the new Devils, Red Wings or Avalanche, by drafting well, managing their assets well, and by using that tried and true development system that keeps adding young players every few years.

Players are no longer the slaves that they used to be, especially with UFA status dropping to 25 in a matter of years. And it seems foolish to expect the manufactured loyalty that you once saw.

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