Steve Zipay at Newsday spoke with former Columbus Blue Jacket GM Doug McLean about what type of player the Rangers are getting in Rick Nash…
“Where do you find a 6-4, 235-pound guy with hands, who can skate, is entering his prime, with limited miles on him — although every night he was the No. 1 focus, tightly checked, man-on-man, because teams knew if you shut down Rick Nash, you beat Columbus? Now people are telling me he’s overrated. Are you serious?”
…seen a lot of Nash haters pointing to the fact that his goal totals have dropped in each of the last three years. But this quote by McLean should have every Rangers fan pumped for next season, as Nash is either going to attract so much attention it’ll open up the ice for his linemates or Nash himself will finally receive less focus allowing him to take his game to the next level.
…the Rangers got themselves a stud Blueshirts fans, make no mistake about it.
On why New York is the perfect spot for Nash, McLean added…
“It’s worse in a small market sometimes. Rick couldn’t walk around Columbus without being recognized. New York? I think he goes there and excels.”
…couldn’t agree more with this statement. While there might be more media scrutiny in New York than most markets (although there is absolutely no threat of him being negatively portrayed on the back page of any of the daily papers), he’ll be able to travel around New York City virtually unnoticed. Unless of course he’s walking next to Derek Jeter.
So when Nash finally pulls the Blueshirt over his head he’ll be on a line centered by Brad Richards, right? Aaron Portzline at the Columbus Dispatch isn’t so sure…
“Most expect him to step in with Brad Richards, a playmaker extraordinaire. My hunch is he’ll fit best with Derek Stepan, but – as a guy who sees the Western Conference almost exclusively – I’m not entirely keyed in on Stepan’s game. Nash needs the puck to be successful. He doesn’t find space in the offensive zone and rip one-timers; he hauls it to net. This will be interesting.”
…oh uh. Wasn’t this the same reason why Richards and Gaborik didn’t work so well together?
Portzline also notes that to complete the Nash trade, the Rangers made a last minute addition…
“…sources have told The Dispatch that the Rangers’ offer changed the Friday before the deal was agreed upon. Erixon was added into the mix on the Rangers’ side, and the Jackets countered with a third-round conditional pick.”
…if all it took was adding Erixon to the mix, Sather should have done it weeks ago. As I’ve had more time to reflect on the trade, the Rangers GM deserves so much credit for bringing one of the game’s best players to the Blueshirts for two role players and a prospect who’s not even a lock to be a servicable NHL defenseman. Not as much of a steal as McDonagh for Gomez, but damn close.
Speaking of Nash, he has a message for Rangers fans…
To watch on Blueshirts United, click here.
…can someone get Nash to work on his on-camera skills. That was shaky at best.
And finally, Nash was interviewed on WABC-TV Eyewitness News last night…