Last week when Glen Sather told John Tortorella he was being let go, it represented a marked shift (we hope) in the mentality of Ranger executives and ownership alike. No longer was simply making the playoffs and winning a few series good enough anymore. Torts in 4 years had guided the team as far as he could've taken them and couldn't finish the job. But what happens if this latest coaching change fails to produce its desired results? Should it be time for Sather to finally call it a career?
For all the very bad occurrences that have happened under Sather's guidance (Jessiman, Gomez/Drury), there have been an equal amount of very good ones (Jagr, McDonagh) that have allowed the Rangers to be just good enough make the playoffs nearly every year post 2004 lockout. But recent successes, player acquisitions and elite performance particularly in the Ranger net, have drastically raised the expectations to the point where the mentality should be ' Cup or bust'.
I am of the belief that Sather pushed all-in on this season as the year to go all the way. Sather instilled confidence in his coach by extending him another 3 seasons at some point after the NHL resumed play in January. Not to mention Sather traded key cogs in the middle of the lineup for Rick Nash, opting for a top heavy team book-ended by a strong defensive corps and the defending Vezina winner. Sather's plan wound up as a colossal failure which ended up in Gaborik being moved for depth pieces and more 2013 draft picks for Ryane Clowe in an attempt to salvage a playoff spot. The Rangers finished the season 9-4 after the April 3rd trade deadline scoring an average of 3.6 goals per game after dabbling around the bottom 95% of the NHL in scoring up until that point.
This offseason is a critical one for a club that did everything it felt that it could to win a Cup but failed to do so. It's imperative that Sather proves that firing Tortorella was the correct decision and that the next coach he picks is a fit for this current roster and its strengths. Personnel decisions on Brad Richards and Ryane Clowe as well as UFA signings elsewhere have to be the correct ones so the Rangers can get the most production out of the roster for their money. Lastly and most importantly, the status of Henrik Lundqvist and his contract which expires after this upcoming season. Failure by Sather to keep Lundqvist in Ranger blue for the remainder of his career would be grounds for termination the second Lundqvist signed on the dotted line in a foreign city.
The room for error in the front office is extremely thin. The time the Rangers had to rebuild and re-tool has expired. Any ace cards Sather has been hiding in his cigar box over the past 13 years need to be exposed. This upcoming season is entirely on Sather to make the right moves this summer to lead the Rangers back to glory at this point one year from now.
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Also, it is almost assured horton will be a UFA. The Bruins have less than 6 million in cap space, and they have to resign Rask and Khudobin there two goalies (Rask will get a huge contract) and other players could be redden, terence, jagr, daugavins. So they have money troubles as well
A couple things... I just watched the Bruins game (one of the best I have seen all year) and I just wanted to get a couple things off my chest.
1) I have been saying it for awhile now, but the best two guys on the ice tonight were Nathan Horton and Evgeni Malkin (goaltenders aside). Both of whom I have been clamoring for the Rangers to acquire in the near future.
My friend from college is a big bruins fan, so I have seen a lot of Horton this year... he is the real deal, and clearly brings his best game in the playoffs. He is 6'2" 230, so a small freight train, and plays a great two way game. Not only that we could even recreate a similar line to the one up in Boston if you throw him with Stepan and Clowe. I have seen enough, we need to get rid of Richards and give this guy a 4-6 year deal at 4-4.25 million a year. This is the kind of depth scoring we need, and he gives us much needed size.
We can talk about Malkin at the trade deadline or next offseason. He is the best player on the Penguins from what i have seen this postseason.
2) Back to the game Bergeron is an all-class superstar... I have so much respect for that guy. He is a winner at every level and deserves all his accomplishments, I hope Step can grow into a player like him.
Mainly this post was about our need for Horton, I take him over Clarkson any day of the week and twice on sunday
Sorry, Neill, your comments don't wash. Yes, Sather has pulled some rabbits out of his hat trade-wise. So, what. Let's not forget some of these trades were to undo the mess he made in the first place. I've lost track of how long this clown has been the GM of the Rangers -- 12 or 13 years -- but the bottom line is that there are no Stanley Cups and most of the seasons were outright playoff misses or making it into the playoffs with a hope and a prayer.... not to mention all of the money pissed away on expensive signings. I liked Slats as a player. As a GM, he's been a horse's ass and I look forward to the day he's gone.
Firstly the Rangers were not good enought to win this year. No way. I posted this in the beginning of the year that anything short of Henry absolutely standing on his head for the entire playoffs would get us eliminated. As it turned out we almost didn't even make the playoffs. Next season could be different as a few of the missing pieces have been solved through trade and, though one or 2 more are still missing, but between prospects and correct UFA signings we can bridge that gap. LGR
Another rule change should be, if a player fights without removing his helmet. he gets an extra 2 min,
Sather is close to leaving on his own anyway. He's almost 70, recovering from cancer, and hasn't been to a Cup final in 23 years. The best way to get him out would be for the Rangers to win a Cup. The second he lifted it over his head he would retire and hold up the famous '94 sign "Now I Can Die in Peace." His legacy has been tarnished by spending 13 years with the Rangers and not even getting to a Final. I think he desperately wants 1 more shot at it, which frightens me because I'm not so sure he will have the best interests of the team's future in mind when trying to build that. We shall see.
He really mostly is a figurehead now anyway. Jeff Gorton, & Gordie Clark are doing most of the leg work it takes to find players & build the team. Sure Sather has final say but do you really think it was Sather who made the Gabroik trade? That it was he who did the scouting & investigative work on Brassard, Dorsett, & Moore? How? He barely leaves Palm Springs or Branff any more. For all intents and purposes its Gorton's team now. It goes like this. Glenn here is who I think we should trade Gaborik for "Brassard, Moore, & Dorsett? Sather "Are you sure thats the best deal we can get?' Gorton "yes" Sather "is that what the scouting reports say?" Gorton "yes" Sather "Ok let's do it" I will tell Dolan.
Sather is just keeping the GM title so he gets the credit for any success the Rangers have.
did sather take stephan's advice from snl weekend update and go to new yorks hottest new club where you get to hangout with fat, bearded don draper? I fully expect like 1 person to get this joke.
Bottom line. 13 years, no Cups. Needs to be gone if Rangers don't at least make it to Stanley Cup Finals. As Neill says, this upcoming season is 100% on Sather.
Sather needs to retire. Yes, he's done some very good things of late, but some of his decisions were SO poor that we're still feeling the residual effects of them. It's time for a fresh point of view at the top and Sather is way too old to learn new tricks at this point.
"there have been an equal amount of very good onesthat have allowed the Rangers to be just good enough make the playoffs"
No, there haven't. Sather has done far more stupid moves than intelligent ones. It just so happens that he made one lucky move that brings our crappy team to the playoffs every year: Lundqvist.
@Josh6 In what universe do the Pens even consider getting rid of Malkin? I see zero chance of that happening. They can't trade Crosby - he's face of the franchise and fans would burn the Consol Center to the ground - but given Crosby's health history, they can't trade Malkin, either.
Even if they could trade Malkin, they'd want like 5 guys/picks in return. But there's no way Shero even wants to trade him. Ever. Please share your drugs. :)
Can you share some of whatever it is you're smoking? Sure, let's go sign Horton for $4.25M. I'm sure if he hits the open market that would get him, right? He will easily be north of $5.5M, probably more. As far as Malkin, if you think he EVER makes it to free agency, you are delusional. Pens will trade him for a boatload if they don't think they can sign him. I doubt the Rangers have a legit package that the Pens would take that wouldn't cripple the Rangers. Nice dreams though!
@JoeNYR yes sir. and so was a certain MAF. currently BENCHED.
@AnnoyingJoe He's been gone so long I think Messier might have more coaching experience than him now!
@AnnoyingJoe Wow, there's a name I completely forgot about, but would be mighty interesting to explore. Nolan was great in his stint with the Sabres and was let go not because of his coaching, but for, shall we say, "retribution"?
@GLENsatherVSglennDANZIG people still watch SNL?
maybe Sam Rosen was right. the 1994 cup "will last a lifetime" until everyone who was alive for te 94 cup is dead. them they will win a cup.
@Zelrio for all the bad free agent signings Sather has gotten himself into, he's had good drafts as of late and has made excellent trades to balance it out. He's far from the worst GM out there.
@gravey94 2 concussions in the last 7 months, he wont be getting 5.5, and also you have to remember with the cap going down this year, people are not going to get as much... Also he would rather have 6 years at 4.25 than 3 years at 4.75 in my opinion.
@gravey94 What? You don't want to trade McDonagh, Stepan and a first round pick for Malkin?
one out of 100 skits are funny. I watch for that one. plus it's good to watch while hungover on the DVR!
@GLENsatherVSglennDANZIG i was born 2 months later... that is cutting it real close...
Good drafts must be credited to Gord Clark the Rangers cheef scout, not to Sather.Rangers draft ,picks improved dramatically after Clark came aboard from Detroit.
@Josh6 @KevinDeLury @gravey94 So let me get this straight, Horton is not going to get $5.5M because he's had 2 concussions in 7 months, yet you, as GM, are going to give him close to $30M for 6 years. And on top of that, you are going to get the Pens to accept 3 underachieving players and a late 1st round pick for one of the top 3 scorers in the entire league? Wow, is pretty much all that comes to mind.
@KevinDeLury @gravey94 As for Malkin, yea it will probably take a trade, which is why I mentioned the deadline.... I would be fine giving away Brassard, DZ, Boyle, and a first for him. If we get Malkin we do not need Brassard (an undersized center) especially if Lindberg or Miller steps in next year.
@scrangersfan pretty easy to say considering clark has been in the NYR organization for all but 2 years sather has been GM