Redemption for Chris Drury? His 2022 report card says so


Of all the newsletters this site will distribute this summer, I expect Chris Drury’s performance to be the most debated. Because whether you think Drury did a good job or a bad job will probably depend on how much weight you place on Buchnevich’s trade. But there was redemption for Chris Drury last season, especially at the deadline.

From reading comments on this site and interacting with fans on Twitter, there is no gray area with Drury. People either think he did a fantastic job in his first year as GM or he’s a Jimmy Dolan lackey and will sabotage the franchise. There isn’t much between the two. Sure, Twitter is an echo chamber of polarizing people and ideas, so maybe the bulk of the Rangers fan base that doesn’t ring true on the internet is more neutral? Hard to know.

For me, having worked for sports organizations for many years, I can say with confidence that there is no black and white in the decisions. There is only gray. There are so many variables and nuances when it comes to building a roster, staff, and an organization as a whole.

If you look back to the 2021-22 offseason and in-season moves, there was a lot to dissect. Let’s recap the major decisions made and why there was redemption for Chris Drury.

Hiring of Gérard Gallant: A

Gallant was my first choice to fill David Quinn’s seat last offseason, and I’ve been really happy with the hire. Tocchet got an interview (it would have been a disastrous choice). Boudreau (a good choice) and Claude Julien (not a fan of his systems) were also available, along with others. However, Gallant and his hands-off style was just what this team needed after Quinn managed to force his way through the gate.

Hiring the right coach at the right time is a massive decision for a general manager and Drury understands that.

Barclay Goodrow signature: B

Last offseason, Goodrow was one of my free agent targets. I’m not going to recap all the reasons I thought we should sign him here. However, in short, I felt Rangers really needed an uncompromising player who could perform a utility function. Goodrow did just that playing top to bottom in formation and all forward positions. He also scored 33 points, which is great for a bottom six player.

I don’t like the contract in terms of length (6 years), but free agent signings are still expensive. The reality is that he has always paid the same price or less than Brandon Tanev, Joel Armia, Zack Kassian and others who were all around the same age and production when they signed their contract.

Buchnevich’s Trade: C

A lot of internet ink has been spilled on this trade, so I’m not going to beat a dead horse here. In short, a top RW should have earned more than Sammy Blais (a 4th career line) and a 2nd round pick. Apparently no other offers materialized, and Drury wanted to move him so Lafrenière and Kakko would have more ice time. This started the need for redemption for Chris Drury.

At the time, I understood the logic, but I felt that it would have been better to wait until the deadline or the past offseason to act. However, with a flat cap, it looks like player acquisition values ​​are still a little muted, so maybe we were never going to get more than we did.

Commercial Deadline Acquisitions: A

Frank Vatrano and Tyler Motte for the 4th rounds, and Andrew Copp and a 6th for Morgan Barron, conditional 1st and a 2nd were all good deals that pushed the team to the top. If it weren’t for those trades, the Rangers are out of the playoffs in the first round.

Drury was aggressive and he didn’t give up on any prospect. That’s all you can really ask a GM to make moves at the deadline. If you were upset about his offseason, the Chris Drury buyout has probably arrived at the deadline.

Other Considerations: A

It should be noted that I like the contracts awarded to Ryan Lindgren, Igor Shesterkin, etc. Although they all seem obvious, much worse contracts have been awarded to local players over the years (Staal, Girardi, Skjei, etc.) and none of these put us in a difficult situation now or in the future. ‘coming.

Overall rating: B


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