Tim Thomas Re-signs with Rangers; Rangers ship out Willsie

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  1. SPG

    SPG Registered User

    Feb 27, 2002
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    Utica, NY
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    NEW YORK (HFAP) -- The New York Rangers organization announced earlier today that Tim Thomas has been inked to a two year contract extension. Terms were not disclosed. Thomas was slated to become an unrestricted free agent this offseason had he not agreed to terms before this summer's free agency period.

    New York's goaltending situation becomes more clear with Thomas in the fold beyond this season. David Aebischer, the team's other goalie currently on the pro roster, is set to become a Resticted Free Agent this summer.

    "Thomas has been with the organization for a number of years. We signed him as a free agent a long time ago when he was toiling in the minors looking to catch on with a pro club. After we signed him, he left for Europe for a few years before we decided to bring him back over before last season. He gained a lot of confidence playing overseas and his hard work has really paid off for him. He deserves this contract."

    Now that Thomas will definitely be back with the Rangers next season, it's Aebischer whose future is clouded. The Rangers were shopping Thomas, but it looks now that Aebischer may be the one on the way out.

    "We've been looking at several possibilites to improve our club. Aebischer is still a Ranger, but I'm not going to rule anything out. With our playoff hopes dwindling, David has made it no secret that he wants to play for a team with a shot at a championship. He'd make an excellent upgrade as a starter or as a backup for a number of playoff bound teams."

    When asked if he plans to make any other moves, Gaffney announced that he had just completed a couple smaller deals.

    "As a matter of fact, we just completed a couple of minor trades. I just got off the phone with Mr. Niece in Detroit and we've agreed to send him a 4th round pick in the 2008 draft for goaltender Joey MacDonald and winger Adam Henrich. MacDonald will give us flexibility and depth between the pipes next season.

    I also approached Mr. Archer in Atlanta this afternoon to see if he had any interest in (Brian) Willsie. I knew from previous discussions that he was looking for another winger. We were able to come to an agreement fairly quickly. We sent Willsie and a 5th pick in 2008 for his 3rd in this summer's draft. "

    Gaffney had to cut the conversation short as his phone rang and he had to take the call.

    Other moves could be in the works, although according to the organization, nothing appears to be imminent as of Thursday afternoon. With the trade deadline only a couple days away, however, that could change in an instant. Stay tuned for further updates...

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