It sounds like NHL enforcers won’t have to worry about “The Boogeyman” for quite some time, as word from the New York Rangers indicates that tough guy Derek Boogaard is struggling to bounce back from a December 9th concussion.
Aside from the obvious number one choice that was the Ilya Kovalchuk free agent soap opera, the gold rush for enforcers was probably the oddest development in the often-bewildering free agent frenzy last summer.
In the span of hours, the Atlantic Division became “the heavyweight division” as the Islanders (Zenon Konopka), Flyers (Jody Shelley) and Rangers (Brandon Prust, Derek Boogaard) added to the already stout group of fighters among those five teams. Right after Philadelphia gave Jody Shelley a silly amount of money, Glen Sather upstaged them (and reminded us why people make fun of him so often) by giving “The Boogeyman” an absurd four-year, $6.6 million deal.
What was already a silly signing keeps getting worse, although perhaps a career-ending concussion might bail the Rangers out from his unnecessary cap hit (much like sending Wade Redden’s $6.5 million to the minors). We’ll let you know if Boogaard manages to appear in another game during the 2010-11 season, but it doesn’t look good right now, as John Tortorella notes that he hasn’t even begun working out yet.