Friday, July 03, 2009

Gaborik Leads Change on Broadway

The Rangers are making some waves in the pool in this busy free agency period and they have done some major shifting in the way their team looks going into next season. Marian Gaborik is the big name they have brought into the fold, as he signed a 5-year deal that is worth $7.5 million per year. He will be counted upon to lift the Rangers faithful out of their seats and if he's healthy, he'll do just that. The Rangers have also done a good job bringing in Donald Brashear, who has a negative history with the Rangers, but should provide some quality fourth line toughness to the team.

In 2009, Gaborik had his share of health problems again, playing in only 17 games, but still registering 23 points (13G, 10A). Gaborik is a superstar talent, there is no question, but he has been marred with injury bugs. It will be interesting to see if coming out of the Northwest Division will be a benefit to his health or not. It was quite the grind playing against Vancouver, Calgary, Edmonton and Colorado.

Brashear's 2009 numbers were quite low, as per his normal numbers. He had only 4 points in 63 games with the Capitals and found himself a healthy scratch on numerous occasions. His role in the Big Apple is still unclear, but he should be figuring in somehow.

Chris DruryMichal RozsivalHenrik Lundqvist
Marian GaborikWade Redden
Sean AveryDan Girardi
Aaron VorosMarc Staal
Donald Brashear

The 10 players listed above still have a questionable cap amount of $39.6 million, which means they'll be negotiating hard on their remaining restricted free agents (Nikolai Zherdev, Brandon Dubinsky, Ryan Callahan, Chris Higgins, Lauri Korpikoski and Brian Boyle) to make sure that they all fit underneath the $56.8 million cap ceiling.

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