Maybe I am a dreamer and it is wishful thinking but I believe that things are going to be different for the Rangers under John Davidson. I just have a hard time believing that JD is going to let Jeff Gorton continue the Glen Sather method of running the Rangers.
I say that because JD didn’t run either the St. Louis Blues or the Columbus Bluejackets the way Sather has run the Rangers. Yes JD signed free agents and made key trades but he built a homegrown core with his teams developing his own stars. Both the Blues and BJs were messes when JD took over and he tore them apart to rebuild the entire franchise.
The Rangers were a mess before JD got here with the rebuild already underway when JD accepted the job of Rangers President. What will change how things are run with the Rangers. For starters, JD will ensure that the rebuild remains the top priority and not try using shortcuts.
It might be a dream but JD won’t overpay for anyone as he saw firsthand the days of first Neil Smith and then Glen Sather overpay for free agents that were failures as Rangers. No more over paying for free agents when the Rangers are bidding against themselves.
No more of these four for one trades as if it is not reasonable then JD will just say NO. Yes JD will sign free agents and make trades but I think you will see them come in as reasonably priced and not those long-term killer deals.
I have more faith in JD if he decides to bite the bullet and buyout Kevin Shattenkirk and Brendan Smith. I also don’t think you will see Chris Kreider be left twisting in the wind like we watched Mats Zuccarello go through last season. Expect a decision on Krieder’s fate to be made before the draft this week.
I do believe JD will tell Jeff Gorton to ice the best possible team but not to rush any of the youth that has been signed so far. Hiring Tanner Glass strongly indicates that JD is going to push for more teachers among the Rangers staff than before.
I can see JD going “old school” and bringing in mentors for his youngest players something that Sather repeatedly failed to do. I remember that JD had former Rangers first round pick goalie Dan Blackburn live with him and his family in his first year as a Ranger.
Expect to see that happen more often on JD’s watch as it is the right way to develop instead of having 18-year-olds running around New York (hello Michael Del Zotto). I have faith in John Davidson bringing in stability as well as accountability to the Rangers.
It is either that or this dream of JD that I am having will turn into a nightmare.