Sunday, September 12, 2010

NYRangers Invite Some Veterans To Camp!!

The New York Rangers have decided to invite some veterans and familiar faces to Training Camp on a tryout basis.  Some of these choices were surprising and others seemed useless.

First news broke that the Rangers invited 2-time Stanley Cup winner Ruslan Fedotenko to camp.  I saw no problem with this at all and in my opinion the more players at camp the better.  But it seems as though a lot of Rangers fans disagree with this move.  Most consider him just another 40 point guy who fits the 3rd-4th line role.  While I am somewhat agree, he can also be much more.  He was a major part of two Cup winning teams and came through in the clutch for Tampa in the 2004 Cup Finals scoring both goals for the Lightning in game 7.  If they had signed him I would be a little upset by the move but it's only a tryout and they can always catch lightning in a bottle.

Join me after this for more....

Then news broke that Garnett Exelby had joined the Rangers at Pre-Training Camp workouts.  Now we know that he has accepted a tryout with the Rangers at training camp.  I and along with most other Rangers fans love this move and hope he plays well and sticks.  I was looking around some Rangers blogs and sites during the offseason and this was a name that brought up a lot.  This is a great situation for the Rangers because if he plays well, they can most likely sign him cheap and if he doesn't then they can easily say bye. 

Exelby was one of the Atlanta Thrashers original selections in their first NHL Entry Draft as an NHL franchise in 1999.  He was selected in the 8th round and is the only player selected in that Draft by the Thrashers who is still playing in the NHL today.  He played six seasons in Atlanta starting in the 2002-03 season before getting traded to the Toronto Maple Leafs after the 2009 season.  He had a tough first season in Toronto and had trouble cracking the lineup at times.  He only played in 51 games and had a career low four points. 

But with all that said, Exelby is that exact player the Rangers need.  He plays a tough physical game and is known for his hard hits and fearless play.  He is not going to put many points up but will definitely strike some fear in opposing players if they mess with the Hank or the front of the crease.  This is a type of player the Rangers are missing and have had a hard time finding.  With Exelby still at a young age at 29 this overall seems like a great move with no guarantees involved.

Next was the news that for a second straight season Alexei Semenov will be joining the Rangers at camp.  This news kind of came as a shock to me as after playing well for the Rangers at camp last year, Semenov was offered a contract to play with the Rangers but decided to reject the contract and sign a two year deal in the KHL.  Rangers General Manager Glen Sather stated that Semenov's wife talked him out of signing the deal.  I figured that was the end of the relationship between the two sides but I was obviously wrong.

Semenov is known for his hard shot that is easily over 100 mph.  But even with that hard shot, he has had a difficult time scoring in the NHL only notching 7 goals in 211 games.  He also is well known for his size standing at 6'6 and 235 pounds.  Even though this is an odd move, I like it as Semenov played great last pre-season and training camp and was 100% worthy of the contract he was offered.  Maybe he is second guessing his decision to play in the KHL and wants another shot at the NHL.

I wouldn't be surprised if the Rangers brought some more players into camp and this is probably just the beginning.

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