Rangers acquire Clowe from Sharks, get offensive boost, theoretically
Ryane Clowe unleashes a gob of spittle in an unfortunate and gross photo.
The New York Rangers added size and superfluous E's to their forwards corps Tuesday, acquiring Ryane Clowe from the San Jose Sharks in exchange for a big bag of draft picks, according to several reports.
Clowe comes to New York for three selections: A 2nd-rounder, a 3rd-rounder, and conditional 2nd rounder that becomes a 5th unless the Rangers reach the Eastern Conference Final again or Clowe re-signs in New York.
That's a pretty decent haul for Sharks GM Doug Wilson, especially when you compare it with what, say, Iginla and Jagr went for. Or if you compare it to the big ol' pile of nothing Wilson would have received if Clowe simply left the team by his own choice in the summer.
Speaking of Clowe's choice, in what will likely be horrible, horrible deja vu for Canuck fans that remember 1994, the battle for Clowe came down to the Canucks and the Rangers, with Clowe having the hammer by virtue of his no-trade clause. He chose New York, as many often do.
There is, of course, an amusing irony in the fact that the Rangers, a team in desperate need of offence, added a guy that has scored a grand total of zero goals this season. But Clowe hasn't just forgotten how to score. He's still getting shots on goal -- he leaves as San Jose's fifth-most prolific shooter -- but he's been struck by some remarkably bad luck. It seems reasonable to assume that the scoring is on the way.
That said, while the Rangers should get a theoretical offensive boost of some sort from this deal, Battle of California isn't so sure Clowe will ever be a 20-goal type again:
Injuries and bad luck have combined to severely limit Clowe this season, and while he is undoubtedly better than the 0 goals and 11 assists he has contributed in 2013, I would not bet on him reaching the 20 goal mark again in his career. As Fear the Fin pointed out in their season preview, Clowe had a disappointing season last year as well, even though he didn't face the toughest competition.
At his best, Clowe is a versatile power forward with playoff experience and several productive years ahead of him. At his worst he's an old-before-his-time Cheechoo-esque figure who had his numbers inflated playing with rising star Couture. With this trade the Sharks are clearly betting that the latter case is closer to the truth than the former.
Still, even if Clowe doesn't provide big-time offence, he'll still provide big-time bigness, as well as toughness in the top six. Granted, considering what they gave up and how badly they need the scoring, if Clowe doesn't produce then the Rangers seriously overpaid, but here's how needed the grit factor is: the Rangers' penalty minutes leader is Stu Bickel, who has only played 16 games this season.
Second to Bickel? Rick Nash.
Thankfully, Ryane Clowe takes a lot of penalties, so that will get sorted out in a hurry.
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