NHL free agent Paul Ranger could remain in AHL

Elsa

Paul Ranger will have an opportunity to play in the NHL if he so desires.

Toronto Marlies defenseman Paul Ranger might be inclined to remain in the American Hockey League rather than sign with an NHL team once the lockout is officially lifted.

With several teams interested in acquiring NHL-caliber defensemen, Ranger has garnered attention after an impressive showing with the Marlies this season. Considering the 28-year-old is an unrestricted-free agent in terms of NHL employment, it is believed that teams will be gauging his interest.

However, Ranger hasn't released comment on the situation, which has some questioning whether he wants to play in the NHL.

This potential decision would stay consistent with Ranger's unique career choices from the past.

After being drafted with the No. 183 overall selection by the Tampa Bay Lightning in the 2002, Ranger played in 270 games with the team before taking a personel leave during the 2009-10 season. Prior to joining the Marlies this season, Ranger spent three years away from the game and left many with the impression that he had retired.

Once the lockout is lifted, it appears Ranger will have opportunities to re-join the league if he so desires. If not, he can continue playing with the Marlies.

As he has shown, he will make the decision that best fits his needs.

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