Ranger Analysis: Why all of the fuss over Gaborik?

On July 1stthe Rangers made a splash in the free agency by signing Marian Gaborik to a 5 year deal work 7.5 per year. Now why everyone is under the assumption that the Rangers were stupid for signing Gaborik is anyone’s guess, but today I found something that I just cannot ignore. Thehockeynews.com writer John Grigg wrote an article that claimed that Marian Gaborik was the worst free agent signing of the 2009 off-season. Not Brian Gionta for 5 years 5 million per, not Hossa for 12 years 62.8 million but Marian Gaborik.

Let’s just get down to what he had to say.

After managing to move one onerous contract out of town (Scott Gomez), GM Glen Sather simply took on another. Gaborik will count for $7.5 million towards the cap (tied for seventh in the league), more than any other player signed this summer. Unfortunately for Rangers fans, you can expect him to not put up numbers worthy of such a cap hit. Gaborik will be a point-per-game player, but expect that to mean 60 points or so on average. He’s electric on the ice, but can’t stay healthy. Even more discouraging, Gaborik demonstrated a me-first attitude while working to get back to the battling-for-the-playoffs Wild when he admitted to not watching Minnesota games and worrying only about his return. A health risk and a seemingly selfish player; not a good mix.

This isn’t the only person to have a problem with the signing, but every one of them cites the same reason: he is injury prone. Okay great guys, thanks for the news flash; now let me drop some knowledge on those of you who think this way.

For starters before Marian Gaborik was signed he was evaluated by (and let me bold this to show importance) New York Ranger team doctors. These doctors deemed that the hip surgery was a success—as if his final 11 games with 10 goals and 8 assists wasn’t enough—and that there would be no future problems. So they gave Sather the green light and he went ahead with the move. All of a sudden Sather is a moron for trading Gomez—as pure passer—to make cap room for a pure scorer. Who will feed Gaborik the puck? We are doomed!

If you haven’t realized Gaborik is one of the only snipers who doesn’t need a playmaker to be effective, he does most of the work himself. Look atthis youtube video on awesome Gaborik goals if you don’t believe me, 90% of the goals he does all of the work.

And whats with being upset with offloading Gomez? He was a square peg in a round hole, he just didn't fit. And the Rangers badly needed a sniper and Gaborik was just that. So why wouldn't they use the money they got to address the issue? I don't see this as anything but a good move, you?

As for being a selfish player thing let’s look at the quote: "When he admitted to not watching Minnesota games and worry only about his return." Oh my goodness! How can he be so selfish? To think that he wants to get onto the ice to help his team as fast as possible so he doesn’t watch all of the games! I don't know about you but to me this is such a minor detail that it isn't even worth saying. Who cares whether or not Gaborik was watching games while he was injured. All of a sudden him worrying about coming back instead of games where he cant help makes him selfish? Oh my I would rather have Terrel Owens on my team than this team cancer! Obviously I am being facetious but you can see what I am talking about.

Thus far we have had two unbelievable posts on staying positive this off season. I just wanted to show you how crazy much of the NHL world is. I realize there are tons of Ranger haters out there, but sometimes it just gets ridiculous. So before we deem that Gaborik is a lost cause and will only play in 14 games this year lets let the season actually start. For the first time in as long as I can remember—aside from the one year of Jagr— the Rangers have a quality pure sniper on the roster. Not a player they pay like one, a player who has the skills.

Don’t forget that many of you hated this team last year and deemed that they wouldn’t be efficient—and they weren’t. This team is going to be a lot more fun to watch then last year’s team, this much is certain. So let’s relax and let’s drop the puck.