Potential trade dealine target: Ian White

February 28, 2013, by
Rick Osentoski/Associated Press

Rick Osentoski/Associated Press

The Rangers are in desperate need of a reliable defenseman to shore up the bottom pairing. Right now, it looks like a competition between Steve Eminger and Matt Gilroy, and neither really instills confidence in the Rangers fan base. Eminger has been steady in previous seasons, but he hasn’t found the lineup consistently so far. Gilroy has had flashes of good play, but he has too many question marks defensively to be a solid option for 10-12 minutes nightly.

We spoke about the possibility of acquiring Douglass Murray a few weeks ago, and the same requirements of potential targets applies here. The Rangers are going to look for a defenseman from a team with a surplus of guys on the blue line. They are also going to look for a player with an expiring contract. The Red Wings have nine defensemen, and two (Kent Huskins, Ian White) are on expiring contracts. Huskins doesn’t do much to address the depth issue, but White does.

White is in the final year of his deal that comes with a $2.875 million cap hit this season, and has been relatively healthy throughout his career. He’s not much of a point producer, but he’s been a steady presence on the blue line for the Wings this season. His GVT sits at 0.8 (0.9 DGVT), which isn’t exactly terrible for a bottom defenseman, and still better than the Eminger, Gilroy, and Stu Bickel trifecta.

As for his deeper metrics, White is off to a decent start this year. The 28 year old defenseman is facing the toughest competition on the Red Wings (.070 QoC), and has been okay with a -3.9 RCorsi (0.25 CorsiON). His 53.7 OZone start % seems high, but it’s actually the second lowest on Detroit. All of his metrics compare favorably to the trifecta.

Since we are victims of small sample size (14 games for White) this season, we have to look at last season as well. White finished with a 10.4 GVT (6.6 DGVT) last season, which is pretty stellar for what the Rangers would use him for. White also finished with a .061 QoC (2nd on the team), 5.7 RCorsI (13.06 CorsiON), and 57.7 OZone start %.

Side note: Not a single Red Wing defenseman has under a 50% offensive zone start (following a whistle). I find that to be absolutely amazing.

On paper, White is a decent fit for the Rangers, especially when you throw in the fact that White is a right-handed shot. He may not throw the body around much, but he’s solid positionally and is a decent skater. But it all comes down to two issues: The cost to acquire White, and the Wings desire to deal the defenseman.

Right now, Detroit is in 10th in the West, but they are tied in points with the 8th seed. There’s still way too much hockey to be played before the April 3 trade deadline to determine if the Wings will be sellers. If they slide, then Ian White may be one of the players that becomes available.


  1. Chris says:

    I have an issue with this and only that its Detroit. From what I have read they are not happy (despite the number) with their own defensive depth so I can’t imagine they’d trade White unless they absolutely free fall which is unlikely.

    That said, I like him as a depth offensive guy.

    Think you’re under selling his offensive ability. When he’s healthy he can be a 30 point guy which is nothing to sniff at. I don’t know his PP numbers but pretty sure he has extensive PP production for Toronto once upon a time.

    He’d be a nice add for the right price.

    • Bobby G says:

      I agree. I’d like to see White in a rangers jersey but from what I understand (from a diehard DET fan I go to school with) although they have a lot of DMen, they aren’t really happy with the overall depth. I’d be surprised to see them deal White unless they reaaaally tank (which is possible).

    • Dave says:

      If Detroit winds up falling out, then White is a piece that can be used in April to get some return. This is all about at the deadline.

  2. mikeyyy says:

    This just seems like a quick fix to a bigger issue.

    We rotated a very large part of our roster and are still developing several promising young players.


    There is a learning curve, they will get better, but there has to be more youth in the lineup.

    We lost a lot in Prust, Anisimov, and Dubinsky. Not bashing the Nash trade…I would have made it too. (Seeing Erixson play more too now)

    But we did pay more than we got back. And we have to re-develop what we lost. After some time we will be better off, but the point is not to panic yet…right?

  3. Fotiu is God says:

    On point, Mikeyyy.

    No panic yet. But depth has certainly become a frontburner issue.

    Though I like Powe’s game, I’m still vexed by the Mike Rupp move; especially given the fact we’ve lost as much Blueshirt identity as our lunch-bucket brigade in Dubi, Prust, Michael Sauer and even John Mitchell’s departure.

    I’d hoped Mashinter would’ve slotted in.

    If Hacksaw Douglass Murray is available he’d be this club’s Rich Pilon. Whitey doesn’t have much left. Pass.

  4. Walt says:

    I don’t know much about White, but I believe we need some hitters back there, and White isn’t the man. It appears that our D doesn’t do a very good job of clearing the slot, we need someone who will pound anyone there. As we approach the tradeing deadline, some other options may become available, let’s not panic just yet!!

  5. Walt says:

    Chris Kreider is being sent to Hartford today. It appears that Torts is uncomfortable with the kid in certain situations. Kreider is a crushed young man, and I feel bad for the kid. Maybe he can develope some down there, and get enough playing time to reaquire some confidence, which is obviously missing.

  6. Ray says:

    I think the Winnipeg game changed everything. Eminger played second pair defense, did well, and Torts had confidence in him! Eminger played over 20 minutes. This is really the first time all year that Torts has felt comfortable with one of the trio. I think Eminger is the sixth defenseman and, assuming the injuries to McDonagh and Del Zotto don’t linger, the Rangers will be focused on the forward situation, not the defense.

  7. James says:

    Stop with your rumors already!!!!

  8. supermaz says:

    First off Eminger is better thanWhite .
    Second, if you want a physicalpresence why not call up Mcilrath for a couple of games and see what happens. I know most say he is not ready, but you don’t really know until you try.