It's still early in the Rangers off season,but never too early to explore off season options. This is a quick post just on some forwards the Rangers could take a run at.
1) Ryan Malone- Not only could the Rangers bring him in but he could also apologize to Chris Drury for costing them the series. He's a hell of a young player with good hands and hulking size on the wing. It's obvious that the team lacks size and with Shannys possible exit,the team could lose some more. One argument is that Malone has had a breakout year playing with Malkin and Sykora,but does that mean that Drury or Gomez can't play? Having Malone on Drurys flank may provide some extra room for the center to find space and score some late min game winners. If the home town kid can't stay in Pittsburgh the Rangers may have an open # 12 ready with Slats holding it.
2) Mats Sundin- Ok, ok it seems like a stretch but it's worth looking at.32 goals and 46 assists would fit in nice on the Rangers second line with Drury on the wing. Winning face-offs usually wins games,and having two players that are great on the draw in the same circle is better. Mats has always played well at the Garden and there is the Swedish factor. Although not as extreme as Detroit,the Rangers may have THE premier Swede in Lundvist. Mats may like the idea of playing in front of some goaltending stability for a change. If Shanny leaves adding his veteran leadership and his large frame in the opposing crease may look great in Prague next year.
3) Markus Naslund- Maybe a change of scene is what Naslund could use. He's a speedster and may be a cheaper alternative to Hossa on Gomez's flank. He also had 9 PP goals and and extra 13 PP assists, enough said. The only negative is he still lacks the size the team needs.
4) Marian Hossa- If the Pens don't lock him up it's a no brainier. He looked very comfortable playing wing with Gomez in this years All-Star game. There was a lot of smiles on that line and a few points to boot. Hossa has always dominated at the Garden and having him skate with Gomez on the top line followed by Dubinsky/Jagr ( if he's back) could be the lethal punch the team needs. Hossa is strong and with a core of players in their mid- late 20's Hossa fits in for the long term.
5) BIG SPLASH - Corey Perry- Ok So Ducks fans are going to really love this one,but the Ducks may not be able to keep this guy on the books. There are a few road blocks to this happening,the major one Sather and Burkes relationship. The both of these guys are in the Good Old Boys club and have done business in the past. After the Oilers made the offer to Penner last year this could be a touchy play for the Rangers to make. However if Perry can't get a deal done the Rangers would have to take a shot. The team's stable is full of prospects on the rise,so missing a few from next year won't burn at all. Having a young power forward that scored 11 PP goals last season is exactly what the Rangers need. It also is crazy to think what Dubinsky an Jagr could do with him on the wing. That's a lot of size and a lot of skill,plus lots of room for # 68.
If the Rangers take a year to step back,they may find more riches in their yard. Evidently Hugh Jessiman has finally grown into the power forward the team has been looking for. If he works on his skating all summer he may be a nice fit playing next to Betts on the fourth line. Partying ways with Hollweg may be an option and a California team willing to bring his speed home may be a good fit. That's Betts, Jessiman,and Orr/ Korpikosky on the fourth line. Size and grit with PP options for Renny not bad.....