Tuesday, July 06, 2004

Can Renney resuscitate the Rangers?

Tom Renney’s temporary gig on Broadway has been given an extended run. The Ranger assistant who took over the reins of the team late last season, will be given the opportunity to mould the young Ranger club into a contender.

President and GM Glen Sather, who turned the team over to Renney as the season was winding down, felt that Renney was the best choice for the job. It’s reported that Sather interviewed Joel Quennville, Paul Maurice, Ryan McGill and Bobby Francis before settling on Renney.

Not coming back will be Ted Green and Terry O’Reilly who have been given their walking papers, allowing Renney the chance to bring in coaches he may be more comfortable with.

Signaling the start of a rebuilding era for the Rangers, Sather lauded Renney’s ability to teach and his work ethic as the key attributes that helped him make his decision. The rebuilding task won’t be an easy one, the Rangers finished out of the playoffs for the seventh straight season and managed only a paltry 69 points last year as the team was purged of its stars and highly paid players. His job will also be watched under the glare of a New York media that loves its controversy, never fails to find the story and if it can’t find one isn’t against creating one. Into that storm will step the former head coach of the Vancouver Canucks and former vice president of Hockey Canada. Most importanlty though may be his time in the Western Junior league, since this Ranger team is going to be made up of many youngsters, a solid guiding hand is going to be required, perhaps that is the reason Renney was tagged today for the job.

He had a small glimpse of life in media circus with his time in Vancouver, but nothing can prepare you for the New York scene. Renney’s biggest adjustment may not be in trying to get an underperforming hockey club to find success; rather it may be buying the time in New York to get the job done!

No comments: