Tag Archives: Ryan McDonagh

Rangers Roundup: Is Klein Retiring, Mika Arbitration and More

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Klein Heading for Retirement?

A few weeks ago, Larry Brooks broke the news that Rangers defenseman Kevin Klein was leaning toward retirement. Klein went from being one of the more dependable Rangers defensemen to a nightmare in his own zone. He has been bugged by back issues that may have contributed to his decline and will be in the last year of his contract next season.

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Rangers solidify blueline by signing Brendan Smith

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According to TSN Insider Bob McKenzie, UFA defenseman Brendan Smith is closing in on a four-year deal with a $4.35 million AAV with the Rangers. Smith was acquired by the Rangers at the deadline last season for a second and third round pick from the Detroit Red Wings and brought a nice snarl and edge to the Rangers blueline. He formed a nice tandem with Rangers defenseman Brady Skjei toward the end of the regular season and playoffs.

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No Surprises From The Rangers

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In what has been a hectic week and a half for hockey fans, the Vegas Golden Knights finally know which players they can poach from the NHL’s thirty other teams. And when it comes to the Rangers list of protected players, there really were no surprises when the list was revealed this morning. Jeff Gorton and his staff were left with two options to decide which players to protect. They could either go with the seven forwards, three defensemen and one goalie option, which would allow them to protect the maximum amount of players possible. Or they could go with the eight skaters and a goalie option, in hopes of protecting more forwards than defensemen.

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Why Kevin Shattenkirk Is NOT The Answer

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Around the trade deadline, all of the conversation amongst Rangers fans was about acquiring then St. Louis Blues defenseman Kevin Shattenkirk. He certainly has value to the Blueshirts being a right-handed shot who is good both offensively and defensively. And while he would certainly improve the blue line, the cost at which it would come might not be so worth it.

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Defense Season Recap and Grades

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Entering the 2016-17 season, the biggest concern for the Rangers was their defensive corps. Aside from team captain Ryan McDonagh, the entire back end was a giant question mark. Would Kevin Klein be able to sustain his successful play from 2015? Could Dan Girardi and Marc Staal bounce back from very sub-par campaigns? How would Nick Holden and Adam Clendening fit into the Rangers defense? And finally, how would Brady Skjei develop in his first full season on Broadway?

And then you have the moves Jeff Gorton made during the season. Was trading Dylan Mcilrath the right move? How would Brendan Smith adjust to the Rangers system after being brought in during the trade deadline? All of these questions left the pundits to question how well the Blueshirts would do this season. Now that the dust has settled a bit, let’s look back on how the Rangers blueliners fared this season.

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The Rangers Expansion Draft Primer

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On June 20, 2017, the expansion Las Vegas Golden Knights will draft 30 players left unprotected by the rest of the teams in the NHL. The next day, the results will be announced during the NHL awards show (unless they are leaked earlier, of course). There promises to be a lot of player movement in two high-stakes games, chess and “chicken”. Golden Knights GM George McPhee could bluff his way into a treasure trove of draft picks and prospects, by claiming to be picking a player he may or may not have any intention of taking. He could tell Rangers General Manager Jeff Gorton that he is deciding between Michael Grabner and Anti Raanta. If Gorton feels strongly about keeping one or the other, he may have to pay a price to dissuade McPhee from taking the player he would like to keep.
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Blueshirts at The Worlds

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The 2017 IIHF World Championships have come to a close with Sweden ultimately taking the gold in an absolute nail-biter over Canada. It’s not a stretch to say that the World Championships play second fiddle to the Stanley Cup playoffs each spring but with the Rangers getting eliminated earlier than expected this year it gave fans some incentive to watch since four them joined their national teams. Kevin Hayes, Brady Skjei, Oscar Lindberg and last but certainly not least Henrik Lundqvist all participated with two not earning a medal and two taking home the gold.
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