12:12PM: Pierre LeBrun says that the Rangers were discussing whether to put a claim in for Hamrlik before Marc Staal was injured last night.
12:04PM: Bob McKenzie notes that the Rangers have claimed Roman Hamrlik off of waivers from the Capitals.
Hamrlik has been a healthy scratch for 16 of the 20 games the Capitals have played this season.
McKenzie said yesterday that the reason for Hamrlik being scratched was because there were four left handed defensemen ahead of him on the depth chart and Adam Oates refuses to play defenseman on their off-sides.
Hamrlik, 38, is 6-2, 206 and appeared his 68 games for the Capitals last season.
He averaged 19:13 with two goals and 11 assists with 149 blocked shots in the regular season last year.
In 14 playoff games he had one goal, three assists, a plus eight rating, 20 hits, 37 blocked shots and 22:17 per game.
He is a UFA at the end of the year and has a cap hit of $3.5 million.
Hamrlik has played over 1,383 regular season games with 155 goals and 483 assists.
He has played in 111 playoff games in his career.
Adam Rotter: I’m not sure there is a direct parallel between Marc Staal’s status and the Rangers claiming Hamrlik. On the surface it indicates that something bad is happening with Staal, but you can’t overlook the fact that the Rangers have been searching for a defenseman all season long and trying to add to their depth. This is a veteran player who the Rangers have seen a lot of over the past few years and who might be a better bet to play consistent minutes than Stu Bickel, Steve Eminger or Matt Gilroy.
Maybe the Rangers were considering a claim for Hamrlik and the injury to Staal clinched it. Still, the Rangers were looking for defensemen and Hamrlik is a veteran who is a UFA and doesn’t cost them anything via a trade.
NEW YORK, March 6, 2013 – New York Rangers President and General Manager Glen Sather announced today that the club has claimed defenseman Roman Hamrlik off waivers from the Washington Capitals.
Hamrlik, 38, was the first overall pick in the 1992 NHL Entry Draft and is the current active leader in NHL games played, having appeared in 1,383 career regular season contests. The three-time NHL All-Star (1996, 1999, 2003) has registered 155 goals and 483 assists for 638 points, along with 1,402 penalty minutes over 20 seasons with the Tampa Bay Lightning, Edmonton Oilers, New York Islanders, Calgary Flames, Montreal Canadiens, and Washington Capitals. He currently ranks third in career goals, assists and points among active NHL defensemen. Hamrlik’s team has advanced to the playoffs in 14 of 16 seasons since 1995-96.
Last season, Hamrlik led Washington in playoff plus/minus rating with a postseason career-high, plus-eight rating through two playoff rounds against the Rangers and Boston Bruins. He also ranked second on the team in blocked shots (37), fourth in average time on ice (22:17), and tied for first among team defensemen in assists (three) and second in points (four) in 14 playoff games.
The 6-2, 206-pounder has registered one assist in four games with Washington this season. He made his NHL debut on October 7, 1992, against Chicago, and registered his first career point with a goal on October 20, 1992, against Edmonton. Hamrlik established career-highs in games played (82), goals (16), assists (49), points (65) and power play goals (12) during the 1995-96 season. He also tied his career-high in goals with 16 as a member of the Islanders in 2000-01, tying for fourth in goals among NHL defensemen that season.
In postseason action, Hamrlik has registered three goals and 37 assists for 40 points, along with 85 penalty minutes in 111 career games with the Lightning, Oilers, Islanders, Flames, Canadiens, and Capitals. He established playoff career-highs in games played (19), assists (nine) and points (nine) with Montreal in 2009-10, while helping the Canadiens advance to the Conference Finals.
The Zlin, Czech Republic native is a two-time Olympian, having represented the Czech Republic at the 1998 Winter Olympics in Nagano, Japan, and the 2002 Winter Olympics in Salt Lake City, Utah. In 1998, he recorded one goal in six games to help the Czech Republic capture an Olympic gold medal. Hamrlik has also represented the Czech Republic in the IIHF World Championship (1994, 2004), the World Cup (1996, 2004), and the IIHF World Junior Championship (1992).