TDR is a working professional in entertainment and is obsessed with the game of hockey. More four years ago, this site emerged as a means (or an outlet) to tell some truth'isms about the game post-lockout, rather than the crud fed to us through knuckleheads like Jimmy Dolan and his lemmings universe. Today, there are a hundred Rangers sites and is thankful and grateful to all those that have come after him, but honorable thanks go to his fellow Dark-writers, Graying Mantis and J_Undisputed. And "Let's Go Rangers!"
Bio of Graying Mantis
Graying Mantis is in fact a graying legal practitioner by day (and sometimes, alas, by night). In the cobwebs of his memory, he recalls starting to follow the Blueshirts in 1970 and remembers watching pivotal playoff games against the Blackhawks on a snow-covered Hartford t.v. channel in their 1972 march to the Finals. Giacomin, Gilbert, Ratelle, and Hadfield seen skating on a small B&W TV screens always will be among his first Ranger memories. He is grateful beyond words for the opportunity to work with his colleagues here in their never ending battle to inform and entertain. Most of all, he appreciates the chance to engage with fellow hockey fans.
Bio of J_Undisputed
"J_Undisputed is an Information Tech Professional; a student, and on and off in his dreams, Mike Richter. He caught his first glimpse of Rangers Hockey when an overtime preempted his favorite pro wrestling broadcast on WWOR-9 one late saturday night when he was 5 and he's been hooked ever since. He's been watching the Rangers for 30 years despite family attempts to make him an Islander Fan (Rest easy...they're out of the will). What started as a minor annoyance has become a life long passion (and at times, a frustration...But he wouldn't trade it for anything). Lets Go Rangers!"
Bio of General Ganz
General Ganz is a cynical yet well-informed student of the human spirit. He's a professional of sorts, with a post-graduate education, some experience working in real companies, and some limited athletic ability. The total small package. He got picked on a fair bit as a kid, and he experienced his first human-non-relation kiss in his teens. He also grew up on the other side of the tracks, thereby helping to cultivate a healthy contempt for dreamers and optimists whose rosy upbringing gave them something to smile about, even when "life produced lemons." Like it or not, his only mission is to point out the potholes you're lucky enough to miss on your drive to work. To find the blemish on your daughter's carefully-stitched (and not-yet-paid-for) wedding dress. To take that little smidgen of hope that your favorite hockey teams fill you with, and pour orange paint on it. Oh, and he is a Blueshirts fan, and takes most of his fashion direction from Ron Duguay (whose name he dropped as a way to close the deal on that first kiss).
The first day of free agency... We'll be checking the Free Agent trackers and rumor mills for signs of life and whats going on around the league.
Lets start this off with some news from yesterday:
Michael Leighton - Resigned in Philly for 2 years averaging out to 1.55 per [TSN's Free Agent Tracker] - Looks like the flygirls want to invest two more year in Leighton to see if he can hone his skills while he splits time with a Vet. Rumors had the Contacting the Nabakov's People and looking into Khabibulin. Affording Nabakov would likely require them to move someone big.
Kris Versteeg - to Leafs with rights to winger Bill Sweatt in exchange for forwards Viktor Stalberg, Chris DiDomenico and Philippe Paradis going to the Hawks [ESPN's Pierre LeBrun via Twitter] -
Martin Biron - From the barn on Long Island to The New York Rangers for 2 years averaging out to 875K per [TSN's Free Agent Tracker] - Looks Like Larry Brooks was right (wow does that phrase leave a bad taste in your mouth or what...) Biron a pick up supports Torts cause in cutting back Henriks work rate. Biron came at a very affordable price for the number of games he can play as a back up... An upgrade over Valiquette and buys time for Chad Johnson to polish his game.
Dan Paille - Re-signed in Boston averaging 1.075 per on a 2 year contract.[TSN's Free Agent Tracker]
Sergei Gonchar- Goes from the Pitts to Ottawa for 3 years averaging 5.5 per.[TSN's Free Agent Tracker] - We knew this was gonna happen. Pittsburgh didn't seem interested in keeping Gonchar. Apparently anyone over 25 creeps out the kiddies. Ottawa gets a vet on their blueline, though there isnt much hope for a return to their defense's heydays. Just for the hell of it. I say they give it a shot. We hear at the the Dark Ranger would like to contend that Redden was the catalyst for that Ottawa defense and they'll need him back if they ever want to get back to those times. Make us an offer... REALLY!
Alex Tanguay - Signed in Calagary for a 1 year deal @ 1.7 mil.[TSN's Free Agent Tracker] - Calgary continues the shuffle and fold waiting for the click that makes the team greater that the sum of their parts.
Zbynek Michalek - Signed with Pittsburgh for 5 years at 4 million per. [TSN's Free Agent Tracker] - Apparently the Yotes were strapped for cash despite prioritizing this kids contract. Clearing Gonchar's money by not re-signing him freed up some cash for the pens.
Marty St. Louis - supposedly resigned with the Bolts for 4 years [ESPN's Pierre LeBrun via Twitter] - Just a rumor at this point as the news was tweeted by the bolts organization. - Not at all surprising seeing as the have seemed quite content to remain stagnant the past few seasons. The latest brass seems to be linked to this mentality.
Alex Auld - Signs with Montreal for 1 year at 1 Million,[TSN's Free Agent Tracker] - I actually liked Auld for the short time he was here. He's not the top guy to have in net, but he won't be the cause of any riots in Hab Land. Don't quote me on that.
Colby Armstrong - Signs with Toronto for 3yrs at 3M per.[TSN's Free Agent Tracker] - Good player that can score or sit back in a team dynamic. It may have finally sunk in that All knuckle draggers all the time won't work for the Leaves in the "new" NHL.
Antero Nittymaki - Signs with San Jose for 2 years at 2M per. [TSN's Free Agent Tracker]. This may be good move for Nittymaki as the bolts were just hanging on at best towards the end of the past season.
Joel Perrault- Goes from the scorching deserts of Arizona to Vancouver for 1 year at 510K. [TSN's Free Agent Tracker]Just enough to buy a sweater and a cup of Tim Hortons in one those resort towns up there.
Sean O'Donnell - To Philly for 1 year at 1 million.[TSN's Free Agent Tracker] - From LA to Philly.. let us know how that sub tastes with wheat grass and a soy latte. On second thought, don't...Blech.
Manny Malhotra - Signs with Vancouver for 3 years averaging 2.5 per.[TSN's Free Agent Tracker]
Derek Morris - back with the Yotes for another 4 averaging 2.75M. Something about the desert and warm weather makes this guy play better. Well that and Jovanowski.
Jody Shelley - After telling Sather to cram his 100k raise, signs with those cheapshot artists in Philly for 3 years at 1.1M per.[TSN's Free Agent Tracker] I knew there was a reason I didn't like this guy. This Rivalry just got uglier, for us anyway. We need a heavyweight who isn't on the slide, can actually skate and patrol the ice and send a message. Instead we'll get someone like that douche, Andrew Peters... Thanks again Slats..$%^#$@%!@
Derek Boogaard - The Boogeyman is a Ranger! 4 yrs @ 1.625 each. Ok, I may have been a little hasty in calling Sather a tightwad that would get us Peters instead of a Name enforcer. No I wasn't, even a blind chicken finds a worm sometime. Anyway, Stogie Face went out and got us the BOOGEYMAN, BOOYAH! At least this evens the odds in the division rivalries a little and reunites Master (Gaborik) and Blaster (Boogaard). Can we hold those preseason bonding exercises at his fight school?
Dan Ellis - Heads to Tampa Bay for 2 years @1.5 each. [TSN's Free Agent Tracker]
Paul Martin - has left the barren industrial wastelands of Newark for the Barren industrial wastelands of Pittsburgh for 5 years at 5M per. [TSN's Free Agent Tracker]If nothing spectacular, Martin has always been a solid defenseman. His transition from trap to run and gun will either highlight him or expose him.
Toni Lydman - To the ducks for 3 yrs at 3M per.[TSN's Free Agent Tracker]
Ray Whitney - Signs with Phoenix for 2 years at 3M per.[TSN's Free Agent Tracker]- Whitney was a sought after guy by a few teams.
Curtis Sanford -Resigns in Montreal for one more year at 550K. [TSN's Free Agent Tracker]. Rumor has it, Hab fans threatened to torch a Cop car if he didn't.
Henrik Tallinder signs with New Jersey for 4 years at 3.375!?!?! [TSN's Free Agent Tracker]umm ok..
Kurtis Foster - is off to Edmonton to be coached by Mr. Rogers err. Tom Renney for 2 years at 1.8M.[TSN's Free Agent Tracker] Kurtis, every time he says "battle level" just nod and smile. If he pisses you off, refuse to shake his hand, he hates that...
Dan Hamhuis - the wait is over and he's headed to the Nucks for 6 years at an average of 4.5M.[Pierre Lebrun, then TSN's Free Agent Tracker]. What, no hometown discount? For that type of money, he better perform for the nuck fans... No pressure though, just ask Naslund.
Chris Mason - is headed out of saint Louis and over to equally obscure Atlanta to tend goal for 2 yrs at 1.85M.[TSN's Free Agent Tracker]
Olli Jokinen - is going home to Calgary, where they apparently have a short memory, for 2 yrs at 3 mil a piece. [TSN's Free Agent Tracker]Yowsa. Glad our name isn't on that deal. Perhaps for him and Iggy the distance has made the heart and hopefully the hands grow stronger. I won't besmirch him. When he first got here, he seemed to quickly grasp the situation that our team didn't have any balls or worked hard enough at playing a well rounded game... and quite frankly, for that its better that he's not here if he wasn't given a role where he could do something about it...those would be big skates for him to fill anyway... Noone shrugs like Drury.
Anton Volchenkov - Signs in New Jersey for 6 years averaging 4.25M per.[TSN's Free Agent Tracker]. Don't really know what to make of this. Its a good sign but considering the mass exodus out of Newark, is this the foundation for a rebuild or case of having the money and desperation at the same time... Considering they brought Arnott back, I'd guess the latter.
Alexander Frolov - Apparently we are singing this guy a song, but he can't hear us over the cash registers sounds in his head.[ESPN'S Pierre Lebrun via Twitter] We're either too hoarse or too broke to sing any louder.
Vinny Prospal - He's back for another season as a Ranger. 1M up front and the other 1.1M in bonuses. - As predicted, he got the Shanny treatment and we'll see how much he has left. With Frolov being a Gold diggin' !@#$@!#$, this is a secure move to make, I suppose... because of how he responds to Torts and as secondary scoring he still elite enough on this team to do some primary scoring.
Johan Hedberg - Licking the spoon in New Jersey with a patchwork contract, that includes bonuses and a no movement clause... amounts to about 1.5M for a year.[ESPN'S Pierre Lebrun via Twitter] Adds another piece to the Newark Puzzle. Could all this be a ploy to keep money free to sign Kovalchuk and bait him with being able to play with Volchenkov?
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