With his DUI and cocaine possession issues now sorted, Ryan Malone is looking to get his career back on track — and, according to the Minnesota Star-Tribune, he might have a suitor in the New York Rangers.
The Trib’s Mike Russo reports that the Rangers have spoken to Malone, who became an unrestricted free agent this summer following his buyout in Tampa Bay. The decision to amnesty Malone’s contract came a few months after he was arrested in late April for driving under the influence while carrying 1.3 grams of cocaine — last week, Malone plead no contest to the DUI charge and agreed to a pre-trial intervention program for the possession charge.
Also last week, Malone’s agent — Mike Liut — said a couple of teams have expressed interest in the six-time 20-goal scorer and former U.S. Olympian. That the Rangers are one of those teams shouldn’t come as a huge surprise; the club is pressed up against the salary cap and has been adding veteran skaters on the cheap all offseason, inking the likes of Lee Stempniak, Chris Mueller and Matthew Lombardi for less than $1 million each.
Malone, 34, could join New York on similar terms and be reunited with a number of his ex-running mates, including former Tampa Bay Lightning forwards Dominic Moore and Martin St. Louis.
GM says Blue Jackets are ‘off the rails’ right now
Apparently Blue Jackets management is a little shaken by the second 0-3-0 start in franchise history, however.
Columbus GM Jarmo Kekalainen shared his shock and dismay with the Columbus Post-Dispatch on Tuesday.
“I’m surprised how, in just five days, we’ve gone from a very confident group to something that’s the opposite of that,” Kekalainen told The Dispatch on Tuesday. “Our confidence, our game … it’s off the rails right now.
Maybe losing to the Buffalo Sabres stings a little bit extra?
Kekalainen said “there’s no excuse for how we played in Buffalo,” pointing out that every team in the NHL is a “good team.”
Indeed, just about every squad boasts some dangerous weapons if they catch an opponent sleeping.
The Post-Dispatch goes deeper on Columbus’ recent history of stumbling out of the gate, but consider the foreboding stretch coming up.
Next four games: Three out of four at home Eight games following that: Seven out of eight on the road.
As you can see, winter is coming for Columbus, so they best get things together. All things considered, this is the right time for a wake-up call.
For bonus chuckles, here’s a photo of Kekalainen on a railing.
He entered the building considerably later than usual, but his presence at least opened the door for the possibility of No. 8 suiting up against the San Jose Sharks.
Instead, the Capitals will face the hot-starting Sharks without Ovechkin (personal reasons) and Nicklas Backstrom (injury).
That’s a tall order, yet it’s also an opportunity for Barry Trotz to prove his system is a difference-maker … and that the Capitals have the young players to take up the mantle when the big stars are out
This is how Washington’s forward lines may look tonight:
With Ovechkin out, Caps lines look like this: