Monday, February 27, 2012

Wolski traded to Panthers

While all the hoopla surrounding Rick Nash continued entering last night's game versus Buffalo, Ranger GM Glen Sather was able to make one deal. Slats sent forward Wojtek Wolski to the Panthers in exchange for minor league blueliner Michael Vernace and a third round pick in the 2013 Draft.

The 26-year old Wolski was acquired last year from Phoenix for defenseman Michal Rozsival. After a promising start on Broadway, the former '04 first rounder finished with 19 points (6-13-19) over 37 contests in '10-11. He had a good camp but a sports hernia limited him to nine games- falling out of favor with John Tortorella. Even after surgery, he only was given three games by our Keenan-esque coach before becoming a healthy scratch following an AHL conditioning stint with Connecticut. Tortorella's liking to John Mitchell and his continued insistence on playing seven defensemen when Ruslan Fedotenko was out, proved to be the end of the road for Wolly.

Wolski had three helpers in nine games this season, finishing his brief Ranger career with 22 points (6-16-22). The likeable winger never complained and thanked his former teammates on Twitter. The always classy Henrik Lundqvist wished him the best with Florida. In his first game Saturday, Wolski forced OT before the Panthers prevailed in a shootout to remain tops in the Southeast. Following the season, he'll become an unrestricted free agent. The Polish kid needs to impress and help the Cats make their first postseason since Pavel Bure starred in 2000.

Somewhat fittingly, like all trades with Don Maloney, the player we dealt is still contributing while the guy we got fizzled out. Lauri Korpikoski for Enver Lisin still irks me. :P Oh well. Rangers West prevails yet again.

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