Is this the start of the great unburdening in New York. Has Glen Sather decided that his crew can't get it done, they're finished, time to get some value for his dead weight.
In what many anticipate is the first of many players moving on the Rangers sent Forward Alexi Kovalev to the Montreal Canadiens. In return the Habs gave up a prospect and a draft pick in 2004, not a bad exchange for a winger, that will add to their offensive output and should help put some distance between them and the ninth place runner ups.
Kovalev makes 6.6 million a year and is about to become an unrestricted free agent, so his time in the rouge, blanc et bleu may be shortlived, but for whatever time he's there, the Habs will all of a sudden become a lot more threatening to their divisional compatriots.
For New York it's possibly the signal that the doors are open, shopping hours have been extended and no reasonable offer refused. With Washington almost done with their Clearance sale, it may be time for the big store in Manhattan to yell Everything must go.
Rumoured to be joining Kovalev in new uniforms by next Tuesday, are the likes of Brian Leetch, Petr Nedved, Tom Poti and if he's cleared to play even Eric Lindros. Best rumour du jour, Mark Messier, one wag suggesting back to Vancouver to finish what he started there. Don't hold your breath on that one, would suspect that if Messier returned to Vancouver (he did get along well with Mr. McCaw) it would be the end of GM Brian Burke for sure.
Six days to go until the trade deadline, Sathermart is just about to turn on the red light specials!