Tuesday, July 17, 2007

It's Again Hurricane Season for Cullen

From The Blueshirt Bulletin:
The Rangers today traded Matt Cullen back to Carolina for defenseman Andrew Hutchison, prospect Joe Barnes, and a third round draft pick. In what is primarily a move to shed Cullen's remaining three years at $2.875 million out from under the salary cap, the Rangers also pick up a player in Hutchison projected as a power play quarterback, but who has yet to become an NHL regular at age 27 because of concerns about his defensive zone play and his lack of strength. Barnes, 21, is a center with size and offensive upside, but his first pro season last year was cut short after 15 games due to a major concussion.

The Dark Ranger says:
This will free up some cap room to allow the Rangers to solidify both Sean Avery and Hossa to avoid arbitration -- one would hope, because arbitration creates indifference with two sides pitted against each other, which typically leads to one year contracts and free agents jumping ship. In speaking with a source attached to the Hurricane franchise, Hutchinson was a rotating defenseman -- not someone of strength and generally the last option of defense - not someone to solve the Rangers defensive weakness. I think most people felt that Malik was going to be traded before others -- perhaps with Nylander out of the picture, the Blueshirt Brass didn't want to completely upset the European-card too much this NYR trading season, making our good friend Jamomir feeling 'not-at-home'.

Matt Cullen never clicked here in the Big Apple. It was probably a good move. The Dark Ranger approves this one.



  1. 1) A deal that works for both teams. Cullen back in his comfort zone will probably regain his pre-Ranger form and assist the Canes to get back into the playoffs
    2) For the Rangers they jettison almost 3 mil in payroll. They didn't get back too much, but they didn't need to right now. They have their sites on first getting Avery signed to a multi year deal(avoiding arbitration) and hopefully beefing up the defense before October.

  2. fauxrumore,...agree on all counts. Additionally, that 3 million plus change leaves open more room for New York to establish that defensive need -- I hear that Peca is considering the job.

    Could work.... TDR likes it.

    It's too bad about Cullen because I liked his level of play, but at certain points he was thrown into our rag-tag defense and penalty killer. Strange, but that probably helped him in the long run and Carolina will benefit because of it.


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