Should the Rangers keep Dubinsky?

May 25, 2012, by

The future of Brandon Dubinsky has been talked about to death. It’s testament to the talent and dedication displayed as a Ranger by Dubinsky that his future is as talked about as it is. However, what should the Rangers do? Should they keep him? How does Dubinsky impact the Rangers immediate future?

Revisiting a Rick Nash acquisition this summer is likely but acquiring the Blue Jacket should only be a serious consideration if the package is reasonable and cap space goes back to Columbus. That would make Dubinsky (once again) a leading contender for a move. At the very least, should Zach Parise decide he wants to explore free agency in July you can bet your house that Glen Sather will be inquiring about and enticing Parise to join the Blueshirts.

If either premier talent becomes a Ranger over the summer there will need to be casualties in either (or both) assets or financial space. This keeps bringing us back to Dubinsky and whether his use to the franchise going forward would best be served as a player or as a trade chip.

Keeping Dubinsky makes sense on many levels. He knows the Rangers way and the franchise inside out. He plays the system and fits the system. He’s young, physical and talented but it’s his maddening consistency that divides opinion. His cap hit is anything but ideal for what he produced this year.

With the emergence of Chris Kreider the Rangers possess a potential All Star forward with better physical attributes than Dubinsky and more offensive upside. Dubinsky’s presence on the roster would be better for the development of Kreider (and Hagelin for that matter) than the presence of either Nash or Parise. Dubinsky can be moved around the roster easier and after all, you don’t acquire a guy like Parise to play third line minutes.

The future of Dubinsky effects so much more than just the player himself and that’s what the Rangers need to consider very carefully before July comes around. What scenario is best for the current roster and the talent on it? What scenario is best for a potential repeat playoff charge? What scenario is indeed best for Dubinsky himself? There are plenty of questions this summer that begin and end with the name Brandon Dubinsky.


  1. Walt says:

    Mark my words:
    Dubi is not going anywhere
    Parise doesn’t come to the Rangers
    Nash is not coming here either

    Now that everyones blood pressure is elevated, would I like to see these others come here, YES, but cap issues, demands for Nash, and Parise’s desire to come here, big question marks. I believe that Zack’s dad said what he said, was nothing but a positioning ploy for up coming FA, and that he stays with NJ, or moves to the Wild!

    Hope I’m wrong on this, but it’s a gut feeling.

    • Dave says:

      I’m with you on Nash, I don’t think he was ever coming here. But I wouldn’t be shocked to see Dubi moved or Parise sign here.

  2. Zen says:

    I was waiting for this post. The answer to this is simple. You have a 3rd-liner, who sometimes is so bad that he more resembles a 4th-liner, making $4M a year. Hockey is a business, so Sather must look to move him.

    In general, this team has a group of young guys who have gotten paid, then automatically taken on a larger responsibility and blossomed into top players. It is quite meaningful to me that Dubi is pretty much the only player to basically cr@p the bed after his payday. There were so many times this season (i.e. Cally injury, must wins, etc.) where I thought… ‘this is the game for Dubi to step up’ and he didn’t do it once.

    By the way, I’m not sure how he possibly helps the development of CK or Hags. There are better arguments for the opposite IMO. There are numerous positive influences in this team and Dubi is not near the top of the list.

    • The Suit says:

      I’m with you Zen, but just to play devils advocate, perhaps its not best to move Dubi after a poor year as his trade value has never been lower. Perhaps next summer, hopefully after he pots 20 goals, he can be moved for more.

      • Zen says:

        Hey Suit. You can look at that two ways. Right now teams could be thinking that he might have a comeback year (which is unlikely). If he has another down year, Sather won’t be able to give him away.

    • Dave says:

      I’m with you. They will need the cap space soon enough, and paying $4.2m a year for a 3rd line player is too much.

      • scrangersfan says:

        I agree with you Dave,my gut feeling is that Sather will try to move Duby but because of the size of hi’s contract,he will not be able to and We’ll be stuck with him for at least another year.

    • Rob L says:

      @Zen “You have a 3rd-liner, who sometimes is so bad that he more resembles a 4th-liner, making $4M a year.”

      This is the clear out front favorite for “dumbest thing I’ve read all day” and it’s only 7:30 AM CST on a Friday before Memorial Day where I won’t be doing much at work.

      • Dave says:

        Dubi is a third liner at the current moment. Kreider/Hagelin are ahead of him at the moment.

        • Blueshirt in Paris says:

          He might be on the 3rd line on our team but he is not a 3/4th liner making 4mil.

      • Zen says:

        Odd comment. Must either be a blind Dubi supporter or not watch the games. Dubi is nothing more than a third line PKer (on most teams) at this point. How many years can you talk about ‘potential’ before realizing it just isn’t going to happen? He has been passed in the depth chart by two guys who don’t combine for a year of NHL experience. That should tell you sonething right there.

        • Blueshirt in Paris says:

          A 20-25 goal and 45-55 point player is not a 3rd line player.

          The question becomes is that what Dubi is? Or is he a 10g, 35p player?

          Either way that makes him a 2nd or 3rd line player in the league and on most teams.

    • Comnsnse says:

      Excellent post Zen. While at times he may appear heavy handed,this coach is all the motivating and inspirational force they need. After all they are supposed to be professionals. This season is a tribute to his passionate approach to the game. Get him a little more talent and he’ll keep them competitive.

  3. The Suit says:

    Well said Chris, will be an intriguing story to follow for sure

  4. mhurley says:

    I have it on very good authority that Zach Parise will not sign with the Rangers now or ever. He hates the Rangers. Take it to the bank.

  5. Dave says:

    This will be the story of the summer. I’m still convinced that Mike Sauer’s concussion saved Dubi’s future with the Rangers. I stand by my original prediction of a package around Dubi/Sauer for Ryan.

    • TommyT says:

      Well that deal would have worked before Sauer’s injury, for all we know he may never play again. They have not even said a peep about him (truly Sad). But I for one am all for moving Dubi for whatever including a bag of pucks, his cap hit vs production is to much and we have plenty of young talent to bring up to the team in a 3rd n 4th line manner. I disagree with a lot people when they say Parise wont sign here, if/when he hits free agency we have the best chance to sign him. He fits the style of play to a Tee, he is young and talented plus we have a limitless checkbook for the most part, who else can bury 6.5M in the AHL.

      • Dave says:

        Yea, it really is sad, and it’s painfully obvious how much they miss him (spoiler alert: post at noon addressing this).

        I wouldn’t move him for nothing, but in the right deal, absolutely.

        • Scully says:

          God do I miss Sauer. He’s got Bickel’s size but plays the man and puck 10000 times better. We have 2 defensive liabilities in the defensive zone at the moment (Stralman and Bickel)… having Sauer paired with Del Zotto would have allowed Stralman to play the 12 minutes a game as a bottom defense pairing he should be playing (even if he does contribute offensively I’ve seen him cost the Rangers as much as he’s contributed).

      • scrangersfan says:

        Limitless checkbook doesn’t work in this age of salary cap.My guess is if the Rangers can fit him in under the cap and pay his asking price, he will come.

      • Walt says:


        Have you heard the word CAP, we may be one of the riches teams in the NHL, but we have to live within the limits placed on us by the NHL. There are plenty of teams that can, and would pay Parise his asking price, we don’t have a monopoly on this my friend!

    • Comnsnse says:

      Dave,who else is in this “package for Ryan”? Because a concussed D of average ability and an overpaid wing might get us a few sticks and pucks!

  6. MBN says:

    I think the decision on Dubi’s future with the Rangers may not necessarily be tied to Nash or Parise. It will be difficult to get anything worthwhile for Dubi coming off the season he has just completed. His cap hit hurts his trade value also.

    I don’t know. Hard to predict the future for him.

  7. Blueshirt in Paris says:

    I think Dubi’s future is directly tied to any future acquisition we may get. Mainly from a cap space perspective and depth perspective.

    CK is a 2nd line LW with potential for a 1st. Haggs is a 2nd/3rd LW. Dubi is a 2nd/3rd. If we sign Parise then it makes sense that Dubi will have to go. If we trade fro a scoring LW I imagine Slats will try to include Dubi in the trade.

  8. Eric says:

    I love Dubi but if certain moves are made he is goner. When Dubi plays center he excels. When Boyle was out in the Ottawa series Dubi played great as center. I now a checking center cannot make 4.2 million.

    On this site nobody talks about Dubi’s holdout and torts was not happy about that. Yes the holdout was forever ago but torts has memory like elephant.

    All this said Dubi makes top 6 money but right now plays on the bottom six. Coming off a so so season his trade value will not be what we all think it is. His cap hit will also hurt his value. I feel he should start the season with the Rangers unless the Rangersnacquire an elite sniper. Hopefully he will have a bounce back next year and help then team on the ice or acquire the key piece for cup run.

    • Comnsnse says:

      Eric,respectfully your definition of “excels” please. Your comment can be summed up by one word,which BTW applies to many on this roster. “Hopefully”! There’s an old saying which applies to this organization. “We live in hope and die in despair”!

  9. Comnsnse says:

    Only if Sather is planning on cornering the market on overpaid third liners,which of course he’s already done!

  10. Scully says:

    Dubi played a great game 5. I can’t wait for him to play a great game 6 and 7. We’ll worry about the off-season after we hoist the cup (see what I did there :D).

    Now…If I can just get to the Rock in time to show Coach Tortorella I can be a better bottom pairing or 4th liner than Bickel etc.. I think I could contribute 7-8 quality minutes tonight!
    (meant to post this quip on this thread)

  11. Mikeyyy says:

    After reading everything.

    Good thing we didn’t try to move gabby when he had a bad season. Same with mdz.

    Dubi needs just a little more maturity. He plays a good power forward game. Give him one more year then move him. They say power forwards take longer to develop.

    • The Suit says:


    • Dubirocks says:

      I couldn’t agree more. I firmly believe that all these Dubi haters are just Flyer fans trolling on these sites. Indeed, he hasn’t been a scorer this season, and his year has been an off-year, but that’s the way it goes sometimes. Even if he is a 3rd liner, well someone has to be a third liner!! I listen to this nonsense, and I think “okay, well maybe the Rangers can just play with Kreider and Hagelin and just two lines.” I mean it’s ridiculous. I love the way Dubi plays notwithstanding the goal drought. And there’s now way you can say he totally choked after he signed the contract, because he’s had one good and one bad year since he signed. I’m actually way more disappointed in Gaborik’s gigantic fail in these playoff games than I ever am in a player like Dubinsky who plays his heart out game in and game out. All you haters are NOT RANGER FANS!! If you were, you’d be rooting for a homeboy like Dube to just pick it up for next season!! GO RANGERS!!! Kick Parise’s ass tonight!!

  12. ehche says:

    Don’t think Dubi should be moved. He brings grit and forechecking ability to the team. This team needs that,especially in this series. He had a down year as far as goal scoring but I think he’ll bounce back.

    • Fotiu is God says:

      To all of you insightful Blueshirt blogger/posters/Monday morning GMs:

      Who roared across ice to the crime-scene that was Brian Boyle’s assault by Ottawa’s designated thug? Dubi.

      Clearly, from Torts displeasure over Dubinsky’s holdout, to all of you who understandably have soured, given the kid’s disappearing act: I get it. We all get it.

      Inasmuch, isn’t this club’s identity built around playing for teammates? As Adam Graves had Messier’s back, Dubi clearly had Boyle’s.

      Glance down that bench and tell me who else would’ve stuck up for a 6-7/260-lb. teammate getting rag-dolled?

      I don’t care how many goals he had–didn’t have–culture-identity-esprit de corps mean as much if not more.

      Closing out, please save the Parise-Nash ruminations for June 1.

      Parise’s destined to become a Wing, perhaps joining Ryan Suter.

      Rick Nash? He suits up alongside the playmaker he never had, Joe Thornton.)

      Let’s go Rangers.

      • Dubirocks says:

        That’s what I’m talking about! These posters are not NY fans. They’re looking to stir up dissention in the ranks. In the section where I sit, the fans are lifelong season ticket holders together in the same section. And I’ll tell you that, collectively, one of their favorite Rangers is Dubinsky, for exactly the reasons you just stated.

    • scrangersfan says:

      This team is loaded with gritty and forechecking players. (I call them grinders and muckers.) We need players who con put the puck in the back of the net day in and day out.I like Duby but he does not fit into a consistant scorer category.Therefore if he can be moved, he must be moved.

  13. Arnie Caruso says:

    Dubinsky is a tried and true NY Ranger. He provides naximum effort every minute and the opposition knows when he is out there. A trade to bring in another so so guy will not help. A little respect for his hard efforts is warranted. I can imagine him scoring 20 goals for some other team.What to save 2 million a season?

  14. wwpd says:

    parise. can we bring back bryan trottier and bob clarke to take over as coach and gm? maybe Dennis Potvin can step in for bick as D6 with MDZ?

  15. Tim B says:

    Dubinsky can still play d. And look what happens without him. He is very good on faceoffs

  16. Rob sahm says:

    I think dubi,s trade value is really low right now the only place I can see him going would be for nash but they are going yo insist on kreider I say no I would rather package anisimov before dubi and I agree parise is not coming to the rangers he is scaring the devils to fork over the cash. what we really need to look in is about getting shea webber packaging dubi for webber and maybe getting iginla makes sense

  17. Bobby Tux says:

    You mean Dumbinsky correct?

    He is the most overpaid player on the team by a long shor. He has no potential. The only reason he had a good year 2 back was that Gaborik was forced to play with him. How many of his goals were tsp ins from Gabi? A lot!

    Trader Glen might be in a difficult spot here considering his success with Gomez , but I am sure there are fools disquised as GMs that will look at the potential of DUMBINSKY and take him. Fingers crossed!

    All that aside, Dubinsky will serve a much greater purpose in beating the Devols in the next 2 games. We all agree he is an overpaid 3rd liner. I suggest to make him a really overpaid 4th liner.

    Rangers need to counter the quickness of the Devils 4th line do I suggest adding Mitchell for Rupp and going with the historically most successful line combos

    Hags BR Gabi
    Krieder Stepan Cally
    Feds Boyle Prust

    And finally a high speed quick 4th unit

    Dubinsky Mitchell AA

    Let’s Go Rangers!

    • The Suit says:

      I’m all for trading Dubi in the right deal, but I cant say I’ve ever agreed with anything you’ve written about him.

      • Bobby Tux says:

        then you clearly do not understand the salary cap or hockey played in the cap world

        It is pay for play nobody can be overpaid

        To boot Dumbinsky was never a good player. He was a hustling player that played on the top line of an untalented team

        Age injury and the infusion of players of skill unwrap the success of a hustler.

        Have you noticed that Richards has hardly played a shift all year with Dumbinsky? Richards clearly has Torts ear and send please never send him out with me – confirmation that Dumbinsky is a dumb player

        I rest my case

        Let’s go rangers!

        • Spozo says:

          Why do you feel the need to insult

          • The Suit says:

            Because obviously anyone who doesn’t agree with him doesnt understand hockey haha. It’s the go to line for every negative nancy on this site.

        • The Suit says:

          Actually they did play together when Gabby and Richie were initially split up earlier in the season. But that’s irrelevant in the grand scheme of things. I think he’s a 40 pt player having a bad season, you just hate him for some weird reason and are obsessed with talking about him.

          • Spozo says:

            exactly if you don’t agree with home than you know nothing about hockey. He portrays his OPINION as fact. Maybe he would get a little more positive feedback if he didn’t use opinions to back up his original opinion.

            • The Suit says:

              He hasn’t backed any of his opinions this week or offered what his strategy would be. Just hating, nothing more….

              • Bobby Tux says:

                you guys have opinions too

                Yours are correct?

              • Spozo says:

                have I ever finished an argument by saying “you obviously don’t understand this game”? I have my own opinions but don’t insult other readers and speak in a condescending way. You do.

              • Dubirocks says:

                Tux–you are a troller. Not a Ranger fan. We fans don’t need a jackass like you slandering our team. Go back to PHilly.

  18. sean says:

    This is post season talk and it’s not post season yet

  19. Dubirocks says:

    And my final thought–Dubinsky may get too much $ for the goal production, if that’s what people think, but he hustles his heart out every game, and that’s worth a lot for passionate fan who enjoys the game. We don’t need him to be insulted and maligned. He’s one of many talented players on our team, and we support our team and our players — when they’re flying high as well as when they’re slumping. In my opinion, the most colossal fail of this amazing season was Marion Gaborik’s ill-timed lack of leadership in the playoffs despite his regular season scoring abilities. These last two games, Gaborik had nothing on Brandon Dubinsky. And still, I’m not gonna make up insulting names for Gaborik the way some neanderthals will because he’s a Ranger, and I’m a Ranger fan.

  20. glaz1281 says:

    Who should be moved are Gabby,Richards, and Boyle. Big stars ,game breakers NOT.