One of the bigger internal free agency decisions the New York Rangers are going to have to make is whether or not they're going to keep UFA Ryane Clowe. Glen Sather traded a second and a third round pick (Florida's) to the San Jose Sharks for Clowe. If the Rangers choose to re-sign Clowe they will give their 2014 second round pick to San Jose as well. If they don't sign Clowe then they will give their 2014 fifth round pick.
The Clowe acquisition has to be looked at as a major failure. Sather payed a hefty price to bring in the playoff savvy forward, only to watch him get injured (reportedly suffer two concussions with the team) and only play in a single playoff game.
Larry Brooks speculated the Rangers were nervous about having to send another second round pick to San Jose for Clowe, especially with the cost it would take to keep him. Personally, the concussions should keep the Rangers away from making a long term investment. They should also keep the Rangers from sacrificing another second round pick to the Sharks by re-signing him.
I still believe Clowe has some value. If he was healthy (and maybe if we got a better look at him during the playoffs) I don't think I would be opposed to bringing him back for a cheap deal, even knowing the Rangers would have to sacrifice another pick. In fact, some days I was able to talk myself into bringing him back despite him not playing in the playoffs.
But the three concussions are too much for me. Especially when the Rangers would have to sacrifice another second round pick for him.
The good news is the Rangers still own his rights. And while it's unlikely that another team would be willing to shell out a good amount for a guy who is about to hit the unrestricted free agent market, Sather might be able to find a team willing to sacrifice a fourth or fifth round pick in order to get a few weeks of exclusive negotiating with him.
That idea, however, is also hindered by the concussions. Would a team be willing to give something to get that exclusive window for Clowe? Maybe. Maybe not.
For me, it's a drop when it comes to Clowe. What about you guys?