Rangers signs Jeff Halpern 1 year / $700 000
— Renaud P Lavoie (@RenLavoieRDS) July 10, 2012
The 36-year old Halpern had 4g, 12a in 69 games last season for the Capitals.
Wonder when the Rangers are going to start signing players that, you know, actually score goals.
Having said that, I know it’s frustrating to see the Rangers signing every fourth line player in the league, but Halpern has a lot of value as a stud faceoff guy. An area the Rangers needed a serious upgrade on. Plus at $700,000 the Rangers almost had to sign him.
This also could be an insurance move in advance of Sather trading away a center for Nash.
No, he’s not a scoring forward. The sooner we get over that, the better. I think we all remember the times Tortorella was short on forwards and had to resort to sticking Bickel or Eminger on the fourth line wing. Depth is important and Halpern is a solid depth guy to have. He finished fifth in the NHL in faceoffs last season and the Rangers were hardly elite in that category last season. Defensive zone faceoffs especially were an issue. The big concern with Halpern is that he is, at this stage of his career, very slow. Slow players can get by in John Tortorella’s system if they compensate for it with hard work, much like Ruslan Fedotenko did. He’s not going to wow anyone but he’s reliable defensively, will contribute some PK minutes, will win faceoffs, and will battle every shift. In essence, he’s John Mitchell’s replacement. For one year at a marginal price it’s hard to have many qualms with his addition.
I’ll fill you in on who Adam is later this morning.
In other free agency news, the Panthers have signed Rangers minor league tough guy Andre Deveaux.