Glen Sather raised the issue at the general managers' meeting in Chicago two weeks ago, citing CBA Article 8.3 (b) that stipulates that compensatory picks be awarded to teams unable to sign first-round draft picks.
Sather is submitting that the Rangers should receive the 17th selection in the second round of June's draft as compensation for losing Cherepanov, the 17th overall selection in the 2006 Draft who died in Russia on Oct. 13 while playing for Omsk.
"The question is with the one parenthetical phrase in Article 8.3 (b) that refers compensation for an unsigned first-round draft pick who is '… again eligible for the Entry Draft or becomes an Unrestricted Free Agent …'," Rangers assistant GM Cam Hope told The Post. "That language was inserted to clarify that a team would be owed a compensatory pick even if they were to re-draft that player or sign him as a free agent.
"It seems now as if that phrase is unintentionally precluding the deceased from being included as eligible for compensation. We understand that this is a sensitive issue, but with all due respect to Alexei's family and his memory, he is technically eligible to be drafted again next year.
"We are not attempting to capitalize on a tragedy, but there would be no question regarding the Rangers' right to a compensatory pick if Cherepanov had been revived and survived the incident and were on life support"
First of all, beyond the telltale "with all due respect" and hypothetical "if they revived him" scenarios let's take a look at who is eligible to be drafted, per the collective bargaining agreement, Section 8.4:
8.4 Eligibility for Claim. (a) All Players age 18 or older are eligible for claim in the Entry DraftOk fair enough, but they also define a "player"
“Player(s)” means a hockey player who is party to an SPC, a Rookie, Unsigned Draft Choices, and Free Agents.
While Cherepanov remains an unsigned draft choice, it's hard to define him as a "hockey player" at the time of the draft next June when he has, you know, died.
So even ignoring human decency it seems unlikely the Rangers legal request would be approved the way the CBA is written. But even if the obvious is brushed off and the Rags are awarded the 17th overall pick in the 2nd round of the draft, let's take a look back over the past dozen years to see who the Rangers might be in line to select along with their NHL stats, when applicable...
1995: Dwayne Hay (WAS)--LW, Guelph Storm [OHL]....79 games, 2g, 4a, 6p
1996: Jan Bulis (WAS)--C, Barrie Colts [OHL]...552 games, 96g, 149a, 245p
1997: Juha Gustafsson (PHO)--D, Kiekko-Espoo [FNL]
1998: Mike Fisher (OTT)--C, Sudbury Wolves [OHL]...475 games, 117g, 127a, 244p
1999: Martin Gernier (COL)--D, Quebec Remparts [QMJHL]....18 games, 1g, 0a, 1p
2000: Jared Aulin (COL)--C, Kamlops Blazers [WHL].....17 games, 2g, 2a, 4p
2001: Alexander Polushin (TB)--RW, Tver THC [Rus-1]
2002: Alexei Kaigorodov (Ott)--C, Magnitogorsk Metallurg [Russia]...6 games, 0g, 1a, 1p
2003: Matt Carle, (SJ--now PHI)--D, River City Lancers [USHL]...163 games, 17g, 48a, 65p
2004: Blake Comeau (NYI) Ohio State University....54 games, 8g, 7a, 15p
2005: Tom Fritsche (COL)--LW, Ohio State University
2006: Shawn Matthias (DET--now FLA)--C, Belleville Bulls [OHL]....5 games, 2g, 0a, 2p
2007: Dana Tyrell (TB)--C, Prince George Cougars [WHL]
2008: Maxime Suave (BOS)-- C, Val d'Or Foreurs [QMJHL]
Yep, those are the average selection of guys the Rangers set their price for class on....Disgusting. But then we say that "with all due respect" to their organization.