2012 NHL Offseason: Making The Case For Alexander Semin

The New York Rangers need a goal scorer. This has been the clarion call since the New Jersey Devils ended the Rangers' season and there have been a lot of options being tossed around for the Rangers to acquire another top-6 goal scorer via trade (Rick Nash, Bobby Ryan) or unrestricted free agency.

One name tossed around a lot in cyber space is the Wasington Capitals' UFA Alexander Semin. Semin is a polarizing figure around the hockey world. The 28-year-old, right-handed shooting left winger is known for having one of the most lethal wrist shots in the game and can light the lamp with the best of them as well as being one of the best skaters in the league.

The problem is a perceived "lack of commitment" on the ice and that he's a "streaky" goalscorer not worth the money.

I happen to think that Alexander Semin would love playing in New York, with players like Brad Richards and Marian Gaborik on his line, and will bring the scoring touch that the Rangers need criticism be damned.

After the jump I make my case in much more detail.

Over at Russian Machine Never Breaks, Neil Greenberg tackled the idea that Alex Semin is a streaky scorer using three models and 10,000 situations (Alexander Semin, Mr. Consistency and Mr. Streaky) and...well...it turns out that Semin is actually pretty consistent:

For one, Semin doesn’t appear to be as inconsistent as many fans believe– at least not when it comes to scoring goals in the NHL. That’s not to say he doesn’t go through scoring droughts (or make bonehead plays in the offensive zone), but when looked at in terms of what we can expect from elite scorers just by random chance alone there seems to be some real consistency there: Semin had more goal-scoring streaks and multi-goal games than the consistency model– with fewer zero goal games to boot!

While Semin's point production has gone down in the last three seasons (84, 54, 54) most of that can be attributed to Bruce Boudreau making a radical shift to a defensive system in an attempt to get deeper into the playoffs and we know how that blew up on the Capitals.

I know a lot of the fanbase seems to recoil away from Semin because they think that he may shy away and hide from Torts demanding system and that only players who play a grinding style will be successful. I don't buy that since that would mean that Gaborik would also struggle since he too is an offense-first player.

For two years at around 4.5-5 million per year I don't see the harm in signing Semin at all.

Your thoughts guys?