Thursday, October 9, 2008
The Battle Over Brendan
Now Sam over at Rangers Report has been staying on top of the Brendan Shanahan situation and giving update after update but the bottom line is that a day before the season starts, we still don't know what the future holds for a certain Brendan Shanahan. When I was a kid, for big decisions my mom always said that I should write down the two options, and then scribble the pros and cons of each one. It was an easy device to analytically choose which way to go. So which way should the Rangers go with Shanny? Let's take a look at the pros and cons of each situation:
Brendan Shanahan Is Re-Signed
*Adds 20 years of experience and three Stanley Cups to the locker room.
*Capable of playing in all situations.
*Will give everything he has every shift he takes.
*Almost certain to score 20 goals through his wicked shot on the power play.
*Handles media pressure well and will take some of the 'bullets' headed towards Drury.
*Even though the results of the Trial were inconclusive, the Garden faithful will certainly give Shanny a warm reception (and keep buying Shanahan merchandise).
*Has slowed down in his advanced age.
*Getting more susceptible to injury.
*Will likely take a while to get into game shape after missing preseason.
*Missed Europe, which the team has already said was a tremendous bonding experience.
*Takes a roster spot from a player with potential.
*Could limit the development of the current younger leaders by taking the media pressure unto himself.
Brendan Shanahan Is NOT Re-Signed
*Less jockeying to be done to get the team under the salary cap.
*Captain Drury is forced to speak up to the media, something Jagr didn't have to do with Shanny around, leading to more accountability.
*More movement on the power play as Shanny won't be there just sitting in the circle waiting to unleash his predictable one-timer.
*Don't have to worry about changing team chemistry at this point.
*Younger players have less competition for ice time - is Petr Prucha a NHL-level player?
*Is Petr Prucha a NHL-level player? I'm not so sure.
*Fan backlash after Sather led Shanny on for so long.
*After seeing them during the preseason, who will score for the Rangers?
*If Drury doesn't step up and take responsibility in the media, the papers will likely hammer the team hard the first instant things go south.
*Shanahan signs somewhere else (Jersey) where he can come back and make the Rangers regret not signing him.
To be honest? I just don't know. Going over this list, I think that the right decision is to not re-sign Shanny. Frankly, I think that call sucks but the home opener is on Friday and you should dance with the date you brought, you know? The NHL doesn't have player/coaches anymore and that would be a perfect role for him to step into, especially on a team in transition like the Rangers. I am a big fan of his and would hate, hate to see him become a Devil or - even worse - outright retire. The man has done so much in his career and has done so much for the sport of hockey that he deserves a farewell tour. Let's hope he gets one ...