Gaborik and the trade deadline

Few details have emerged concerning the status of winger Marian Gaborik. To date there’s still no clear cause for the injury -- John Tortorella initially said he didn’t think Gaborik sustained the concussion during Sunday’s 4-2 loss to the Philadelphia Flyers -- and his return is not yet known.

To fill the void in the Rangers forward corps, the team recalled C Kris Newbury from Hartford. Newbury has been up and down throughout the season, posting one assist in eight games with the Blueshirts.

The Deadline Cometh

Once rumored to have interest in Edmonton Oilers/Hershey Bears D Sheldon Souray, the Rangers did not place a claim on the hulking D with the smoking slap shot by Monday’s noon deadline, nor did any other NHL team.

ESPN’s Pierre LeBrun reported yesterday the Rangers were turned off by the extra season remaining on his contract.

That’s not to say the Rangers will continue to sit on their hands before the Feb. 28 league trading deadline. While the talented, but very, very young, blueliners have held their own since the trade of Michal Rozsival for Wojtek Wolski, it was thought GM Glen Sather may attempt to bring in a more veteran D to steady the group come playoff time. According to ESPN’s Rumor Central, Bryan McCabe has had his name mentioned in conjunction with the Rangers.

But now that Gaborik is down and his return is uncertain (see Sidney Crosby for just how iffy concussions can be) it seems more imperative than ever that the Rangers try to improve their offense. The only problem is that it’s seemingly a weak market for forwards and particularly centers.

If made available, and healthy, Brad Richards of the Stars would headline the class -- but also carry a huge price tag. While the Rangers’ system is better stocked than it has been (No. 9 according to Hockey's Future), it doesn’t quite trump the prospects boasted by the Los Angeles Kings and Washington Capitals, two teams also in desperate search for a boost to the front line.

Ales Hemsky, Stephen Weiss (availability unclear) and Tim Connolly have also had their names emerge in trade rumors. Across the Hudson, Jason Arnott’s name has also surfaced.

Time will tell if any of them will be wearing a blue sweater before the start of March, but my bet is the Rangers will try to make a deal of some kind.