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Rangers Make Their Off-Season "Splash" By Adding Vet Blueliner Dan Boyle

Dan Boyle

Day 1 of NHL free agency came and went with little surprises for the Blueshirts. Anton Stralman (5 years/$22.5 mil with $2 mil signing bonus & a modified NTC) & Brian Boyle (3 years/$6 mil) went south to join former captain Ryan Callahan in TB. While Stralman priced himself out of NY, Boyle’s deal might seem like a number Sather could’ve ponied up. He made it clear to AV though that he was looking for more responsibility & decided the better opportunity was with the Bolts. Benoit Pouliot is officially an ex-Ranger as well, inking a laughable 5 year/$20 mil contract with Edmonton. Also, the recently bought-out Brad Richards found a nice new landing spot in Chicago on a friendly 1 year/$2 mil agreement.

The one UFA the Blueshirts did keep was, in my opinon, the most important. Dom Moore stays put for 2 years/$3 mil & will be joined by Tanner Glass, former Pen, for 3 years/$4.5. There’s plenty of evidence to show Glass may very well be the worst hockey player in the NHL – but he’s a legit tough guy who hits everything that moves, contributes on the PK and should benefit from playing alongside Moore instead of fellow plugs he had in Pitt. The Rangers biggest “splash” though was getting Dan Boyle, who will be 38 when the season opens, to snub better offers from teams like the Isles & Sabres and ink a 2 year/$9 mil deal with a NMC. While it looks like a move to get excited about, let’s be realistic. Yes, he’s a right-handed shot who’s the next acquisition responsible for bolstering the power play. Is he really at a point in his career where he can do that though? We’ve seen others fail up front in a similar spot, and the almost-40 Boyle won’t be playing with Marleau/Thornton/Couture/Pavelski anymore. It’s the “right” move – I don’t hate it – but I’m not convinced he’s a difference-maker.

Assuming Miller/Lindberg/Fast make the upcoming roster, there’s about $12 mil for RFA’s Zuccarello, Kreider, Brassard & John Moore. Barring a trade, the Rangers will rely heavily on a couple of kids stepping in and filling out bottom-six roles. No one in the East has done anything to change the balance of power though, so they’ll have just as good a shot to get through the conference again. They’re still incredibly weak up the middle, but coming into free agency, odds were there wasn’t enough cap room to help there. All in all, after Day 1, the West had all the fun while the Blueshirts & the rest of the East kept it pretty low-key.