Brendan Shanahan Is Thinking New York
According to CSN Philly, Brendan Shanahan is only interested in playing hockey for two clubs next season, the Rangers and the Devils. I'll let you take a wild guess which of the two he prefers... If you guessed the Rangers, good for you. If you guessed the Devils, well I can't help ya. Shanny loved his time in New York. The Garden crowd embraced him as one of their own and there's little doubt in my mind he'd jump at the opportunity to once again play in the Big Apple. Shanny brought a tenacity and veteran leadership that the team had previously not had. When Sather decided to let him go last summer (well not really, he yanked his chain for 4 or 5 months and led him to believe the Rangers were interested when he was never actually in their plans, but that's for another time) the team dearly missed his presence in their locker room and on the ice. I was one of, if not the biggest advocate in the Rangers blogosphere when it came to Shanny returning to the team last season. But that was then and this now, things have changed.
Brendan Shanahan is one of the all-time hockey greats. He combined scoring ability and a blue collar attitude that presently is all his own. A perfect example is when he dropped the gloves with Donald Brashear at the Garden. Even at the age of 38, Shanny felt the need to take matters into his own hands when Brashear had taken a few liberties with Jaromir Jagr. It was incredible. One of the most amazing things I've ever seen during a hockey game. Shanny can still play third line minutes effectively and could be a power play specialist. His veteran leadership is also something the Rangers need, but he's no longer the right option.
Signing Shanny would be throwing the New York version of a youth movement to the curb. Although the team might be better off with Shanny this season than say Dane Byers or Jordan Owens, it's sacrificing their development. Unfortunately Shanny is 40 and is quickly skating off into the sunset. The Rangers future is their young talent, not Brendan Shanahan.
The only way Shanny is a viable option in my eyes is if the Rangers feel Byers, Owens, Lisin, or whoever it may be is not ready to play at the NHL level. Otherwise, as difficult as it is for me to say I don't want to see Shanny don a Rangers jersey next season, they need to look from within.
This time though, let Shanny know early you're not interested Sather.