Feb
13

Rangers musings: Looking ahead to the trade deadline

February 13, 2017, by
kevin hayes

AP Photo/Mary Altaffer

As Sunday turned to Monday the Rangers are in a nice place; they’re riding a five game win streak with Henrik Lundqvist being fresh off win number 400. Without further delay, let’s muse all things Rangers with a focus on the impending trade deadline.

Every team has their needs and everyone around the league know what the Rangers’ needs are which beggars the question; when a team’s need is as glaring as the Rangers (hello right handed blueliner) is it at all possible to get value at the deadline? If the Rangers do make a move to improve the one obvious flaw that they have, it will take something very special from Jeff Gorton to not overpay and/or give up a major asset or two.

Stating the obvious: JT Miller, Kevin Hayes and Brady Skjei should all be untouchable.

Sticking with the trade deadline theme and it’s good timing that Kevin Klein has played better of late. He’s still an adventure in his own end, his positional play is still erratic but when he plays instinctively and doesn’t try to hold the puck he’s at least competent. Don’t think his recent two goal showing will have gone unnoticed around the league.

If the Rangers are willing to move Klein I cannot help but think they can get a solid return. You look at the return some mediocre (or past their best) blueliners have fetched in the recent past and you have to think Klein can fetch something, even if his value is at his lowest. John Michael Liles netted a prospect and two mid round picks last year. Eric Gelinas netted the Devils a third-round pick. Two players that got solid returns despite offering little upside to the acquiring clubs.

Rick Nash is flirting with us. He’s constantly threatening to burst out but can’t seem to put up consistent numbers. I feel like he’s about to break out and have a hot streak though. He’s driving to the net regularly and is potting a goal here and there but can’t really string back to back games together right now. I feel like luck hasn’t been on Nash’s side. Importantly though, he’s playing in the right areas and is always around the goal; that’s how he scored his goal against the Avalanche.

Reflecting on Henrik Lundqvist’s immense achievement this past weekend. Based purely on a player’s body of work with the franchise (so, not what they did elsewhere), is Lundqvist the greatest New York Ranger ever? Does a player have to have won a Cup to be in the mix for such an accolade?

Lundqvist is only the third goalie (Tony Esposito and Marty Brodeur the others) to have 400 wins with one club. Bare in the mind how old the NHL is. That’s such an impressive feat.

I can’t help but love watching Chris Kreider this season. He’s becoming a dominant, consistent presence. He just gets it now. He’s not just using his wheels and his lethal shot but he’s going to the right parts of the ice more than ever before. He’s scored a lot of goals this season around the net. When a goal bounces off you and in, it’s not an accident if you’re getting in the right positions.

I’m intrigued to see what the future holds for Oscar Lindberg. He’s fighting for his place in the line-up and I still think he’s the Rangers best fourth line centre but does he hold more value as a trade chip (a cheap one at that) or in the line-up?

Watching Kevin Hayes this season reminds me of an important principle when deciding how to handle an asset: patience is important. Last summer I thought the best way for the Rangers to address its blueline was to trade Hayes, but I am so happy Gorton showed patience with what was then a player that was stuck in neutral. Right now Hayes is a joy to watch and his playmaking is at an elite level. Had the Rangers followed my suggestion last summer they would have traded an asset at it’s lowest value – I’ve never been happier to be wrong about a player.

Sticking with the main theme of this week’s musings – the trade deadline. The Rangers still need to improve their pipeline. While they need to improve the blueline, Gorton should also be busy elsewhere. If Matt Puempel and Brandon Pirri aren’t going to play the Rangers need to get some draft picks for them. If an injury hits the Wolf Pack can offer up Hrivik, Jensen and/or Nieves who can all easily come up for a game or three. The Rangers are in a nice spot up front; it’s time for some asset management.

Question time:

  • Who will lead the Rangers in goals at the end of the season?
  • Would you trade the Rangers first round draft pick and if so, what for?
  • How far can the Rangers go without addressing their blueline?
  • How many career wins will Henrik Lundqvist finish with?

68 comments

  1. Richter1994 says:

    Skjei is not untouchable if Trouba is in play, as he would be mandatory in that deal. Otherwise, if not for Trouba then Skjei stays.

    Miller has reached untouchable status and I thought that 2 months ago. He has been their best player so far this year.

    My untouchable list, meaning they are not being traded for anyone: King, Raanta, McD, Miller, Hayes, Kreider, Zib, Buch, Vesey.

    Almost untouchable: Skjei (only traded for Trouba).

    Available for the right deal: Stepan, Zuc, Grabner, Holden, and Nash (probably not tradeable at this point).

    PLEASE TAKE THEM: G, Staal, KK.

    “Throw in” fodder: Lindberg, Fast, Pumpel, Pirri (who?), Clendening.

    • Jerry says:

      Hey Richter.
      On board with your categories with some minor changes.
      I would keep Grabner, save for a “blown away” offer, so elevate him to the “Almost Untouchable” category. Besides from his goal scoring and speed, his very cheap salary for next year is a reason I’d make him almost untouchable.
      And feel Lindberg and Fast, shouldn’t be classified as “throw in fodder”. In my humble opinion, Lindberg is the perfect 4th line center. Good on faceoffs and defensively responsible.
      And I guess I’m one of the few on here that appreciates Fast for a pretty good defensive player.
      One issue I have with this team is it being one dimensional, and I see a need for a fourth line that is as close to a shutdown defensive line as possible. Lindberg and Fast add that defensive element. The playoffs are coming and when we play a team in a seven game series I think a good defensive fourth line will be a much needed commodity. Now that I said that out loud, AV isn’t a line matching coach anyway, so………..
      All that said it takes two to make a trade and GM’s around the league know the Rangers are desperate for D help on the right side. So whoever, if anyone, we get will not come cheap. Breaking up an extremely good forward group might be a mistake.
      The upcoming few games will tell us a lot about this team, Columbus, Islanders (greatly improved), Caps (best team by far in the league), and Montreal. All teams that will show us who the Rangers are.
      Now I will end before this becomes Eddie in length……

      • Richter1994 says:

        Hey Jerry.

        Grabner is a very interesting case. As of this second, he is not protected for the draft. Neither is Raanta or Holden or Fast. Do the Rangers do deals with Las Vegas to keep them from drafting these players? I think the start date to allow such deals is coming up. But do you do those deals as opposed to just losing one player? I heard that the rangers might do this type of deal to keep Raanta.

        So unless a top 6 is traded then this is the case. I do think that Stepan might be the odd man out in a trade but that weakens the C position and forces Miller off Hayes’ line into a C position. Not ideal for sure.

        I have floated the “trade Zuc” mantra only because he is 30, does not have a NMC of any kind, is valuable for trade, and I believe that Buch would fill his spot on the Rangers just fine. Vesey also remains in the top 9 then as well.

        Of course all of this is moot if the trade cost the few true sellers are asking for is through the roof. In that case no major deal for the Rangers.

        • AZgene4240 says:

          hey buddy, The Rangers and all teams can begin talking to the Vegas Knights on March 1st. in regard to trades.

          If Gorton wants to keep Grabner which I truly believe they too. Same goes for Fast to an degree. I say Gorton will expose Holden or Klein (if not traded), Lindburg, and believe it or not, depending on who they truly want to protect, I can see Zucc unprotected. As much as that would suck, if they want to protect all their young players and feel they have to keep Grabner, that the 30 yr. old Zucc would b exposed.

          I am not sure if Zucc has one or two years left on his contract. Either way, if this does play out and Zucc is gone in the draft, we can just re-sign when his contract is up and have Zucc play until he wants to retire as a Ranger. I know this seems crazy because zucc is the heartbeat of this team in my opinion, However, if we just need to re-tool the defensive and Gorton wants to keep the young core and forward depth in tact, than this might be the sacrifice Gorton has to make

          • Richter1994 says:

            Hey bro, looking less and less likely that a major deal gets done now, though you never know.

            The D may be dealt with after this season and before the expansion draft.

    • craig says:

      Richter, some great points but, have to disagree about trading Skjei for Trouba. Is Trouba really that much better or an upgrade? How much are we really improving our defense with a move like that? Both around the same age, Skjei has 23 assists and hasn’t been bad at all on defense. He is a great skater with size, and is getting better as the year goes as he plays with confidence. In a year or two, Skjei has the potential to develop and become a top player. He may even end up better then Trouba in the long run, so is it really worth it to make a move like that?

      • Richter1994 says:

        Hi Craig, the answer to your Skjei/Trouba question is definitely “yes” meaning Trouba is on a different level, and I am a huge Brady fan.

        A McD-Trouba pairing becomes one of the best in the league, not an exaggeration. After a slow start after his holdout, Trouba has been fantastic. His D #s are ok but on a bad team. Put him with McD and it makes both players elite.

        Don’t forget that Skjei and Trouba are about the same age. Trouba is light years ahead on both sides of the ice, yes, even the offensive side. Read Travis Yost as he did an article on TSN on Trouba back in September, 2016. Great insight and one of the reasons why I became a Trouba believer that he could help solve our D problems here.

        Trouba becomes a star here, IMO. Skjei will not or if he does not for a long time.

        • paulronty says:

          Richter, I’m with you, Trouba is far better than Skjei, but it will take far more than Skjei to get Trouba & I doubt the Jets want Stepan. A multi player deal is possible with both the Jets & the Wild, but the Rangers seem to be heavily scouting the Kings & their AHL team. I’m not very impressed with what’s available from the Manchester Monarchs, so who knows what’s up there.

          • Richter1994 says:

            I just heard today, major trade “unlikely.” Doesn’t mean it won’t happen but Gorton does not want to give up a top 9 forward at this time.

    • Bloomer says:

      Skjei is not only a better defenceman then Trouba, he has more upside. Anyone who thinks Trouba is better, hasn’t watched the Winnepeg Jets play. They have one of the worse blue lines in the league.

      Why is Nash not tradeable? There are playoff teams with capspace and the Rangers could take some contract back in return.

      • paulronty says:

        Sorry to disagree Bloomer, but Skjei is not in the same league as Trouba, especially in the D-zone where Skjei is easily moved off the puck. I can’t help but notice how timid he is for such a big guy. Beuke wants him to play more physical, but I’ve yet to see it.

      • Richter1994 says:

        Hey Bloomer, yeah we’ve talked about this. But I don’t think that you can take all that at face value. Our D may be worse than the Jets’ D.

        But you pair Trouba with McD and I think that you really have something.

        No one will take Nash with an almost $8M cap hit.

    • Fran says:

      You never Girardi for anyone without a cane

  2. Chris F says:

    This entire discussion misses the most crucial piece of the puzzle, which is expansion draft protections.

    Rangers can only protect 7 forwards and 3 defensemen. McDonagh must be protected, and Staal and Girardi have NMCs which precludes them from being exposed. Unless there is a buyout, or a clause in which either can waive their NMC and be exposed, then the whole discussion is void. Can’t bring in defensive help other than a rental until after the draft.

    • Jerry says:

      100% agreed Chris. Super important consideration.

    • Walt says:

      Your spot on, and for the mentioned reasons I wouldn’t make any major moves, unless G, Staal, or Klein are moved, or bought out.

      I’m in the camp that Step can be moved for a top right d-man, along with Nash, or Zucc, sick, but for the right return.

      Now let’s look at Skjei. Why would we want to trade him away for another defenseman? That only creates another hole to fill in later. The kid can play both sides, skates great, and is learning quickly how to really play the game well.

      About trading our #1 pick, NO NO NO way. That would be four years in a row without a #1, and look at how weak we are in the system. No defensmen to speak of other that Graves, no forwards of any quality, meaning top six player, just makes no sense to me. I believe that Gorton won’t be that stupid, he appreciates the value of drafting early, hell he ran the scouting department, and look at some of the late picks he got us.

      I see us doing nothing, or a major trade, but it centers around getting rid of at least one, if not both of the pylons, and that would take a magician !!!!!!!!!!!

      The biggest issue still is the draft, can we protect whatever return we get????

    • paulronty says:

      You are very right about this & a buyout of G will put us in cap hell for several years I fear.

      • wwpd says:

        G’s buyout cap hit over the next 6 years would be 2.6, 3.6, 3.6, 1.1, 1.1, 1.1 (vs 5.5 for the next 3 years) so it’s a great deal if you are in the camp that he shouldn’t be on the ice anyway or a decent deal if you think you can replace him for less than $3M per year

  3. bsbarmchairgm says:

    The Rangers are not contenders with the current black hole of a defense.

    If Gorton could get any team to take on the contract of Staal without any retention and without sending a bad contract in return, then I could just maybe consider including a first round pick. Could this be done after the expansion draft?

    Furthermore, I would buyout Girardi, since I guess there is no other way to move that contract…?

    I would also make some forward moves before expansion draft, because I do not want to lose a high value asset like Grabner for free.

  4. Anthony Merrill says:

    Here is what the Rangers need and can get it done, JUSTIN FAULK, enough said.

    • sherrane says:

      Seriously? What would you think it would cost the Rangers to acquire Justin Faulk?

  5. SalMerc says:

    Add some defensive depth and speed with a defensive specialist. He can be a 6th or 7th man but a shutdown guy who can be matched against the league’s best.ay have to sit Klein or Girardi but a guy who can shadow the best.

  6. amy says:

    the rangers played a good game Saturday night but tonight is the test against the blue jackets game should be on NBCSN and MSG good luck tonight boys

  7. Bobby B says:

    Trade deadline always makes my juices flow, our team is in the mix for a Cup run, in my humble opinion we still lack the overall grit and toughness for the long play off grind, with the upgrade on Defense being a top priority ( as long as we do not Mortgage away our future picks, as per Walt.) I am all in for Trouba, but if the price is too high lets go after Dustin Byfigulien ( a beast of a D-man who will immediately put an end to any team sending out intimidation messages.) The other guy right for the pickings is Evander Kane ( 17 goals this season on a Buffalo team going nowhere) You put Byfigulien and Kane on this current Ranger team, no other NHL team will want to play us come playoff time , the D-issue is upgraded,( no more opposition staying overnight in Hanks crease) and you add a forward who can score, check, and fight if need be. Go Jeff Gorton, put your stamp on this team that you already have done a masterful job on.

    • Walt says:

      Bobby

      Unless, and until you rid yourself of the pylon twins, we aren’t going to make the trades mentioned. How do you protect these two players? Another question, Kane is a cancer, has been everywhere he’s been. Do we really need that type of person on this team, in our locker room? Lastly, both come with big contracts, what do we do with the guys like Z, and others who are due for a major pay increase???

      I don’t see anything like you mentioned happening now, or down the road, unless we get cap relief from the pylon twins. Man, it always gets back to these two doesn’t it???????????

    • Bloomer says:

      Dustin Byfigulien is another overrated defenceman who would make things worse not better for the Rangers.

    • Kris says:

      Bobby,

      Byfugliens contract is brutal, infact Im not sure Id want to make that trade if it was him for Staal straight up and Im a huge Byfuglien fan. He just resigned last season, if he didnt want to be there he would have went to UFA.

      Kane seems like hes a huge off ice and locker room problem, not sure I want that around all the kids on this team. Also Byfuglien and Kane dont see eye to eye, while in Winnipeg together after something Kane did like miss a meeting show up late, Byfuglien responded by throwing Kanes clothes into the shower.

  8. jerry maley says:

    It’s outrageous the even the King’s 400th could not get the effing Knicks off the backpage of the New York Daily Rag..

  9. Al Dugan says:

    In all these trade discussions, just remember that TAYLOR HALL, one of the best wingers in the league, was traded for Adam Larsson. So, if you think NYR can get a top player for one of our discards, keep dreaming.

  10. sherrane says:

    1– Who will lead the Rangers in goals at the end of the season?

    Grabner as long as he stays on the same line as Miller and Hayes. That trio has been the Rangers’ best line on most nights since AV put them together.

    2 — Would you trade the Rangers first round draft pick and if so, what for?

    No.

    3 — How far can the Rangers go without addressing their blueline?

    It depends who they play. They can get to the ECF as long as Lundqvist continues his quality play if they get the #1 wildcard and come through the Atlantic. I think they can beat Washington, not Pittsburgh, with Columbus being a toss-up in a 7-game series. I think they can beat Anaheim, St. Louis, and Nashville with San Jose and Los Angeles (because they will need to get red hot to get there) being a toss-up for the Cup. They lose to Minnesota and Chicago. If they come through the Metro, they need to finish ahead of Pittsburgh (and play Columbus in the opening round) to have a chance to do anything.

    4 — How many career wins will Henrik Lundqvist finish with?

    Provided there is not another strike during his career, I think he passes Roy and finishes with about 560 wins.

  11. joe719 says:

    I don’t really see them doing anything major, unless they want to reshape the team going forward: meaning dealing a Stepan, Zuc or a Nash. I don’t see that happening. I see them adding some depth players on the backline, maybe a Matt Hunwick or a Johnny Oduya type. I know a lot of people are talking about parting with Stepan. Fine, you’d get Defensive help I guess, but you’d create another hole up front—unless you think Zebanejad and Lindberg could step up to fill the gap. Right now, I don’t think they can.

    Whats this rumor I heard the other day that Pit was willing to deal Hagelin and Maanta to Col for Landesgog? Interesting.

  12. paulronty says:

    1) Kreider
    2) NO,NO,NO
    3) As far as Hank can take them
    4) Somewhere between 525-550

  13. Andy says:

    First thing I would try to do is package Girardi and Raanta in a package to a team like Dallas in exchange for say Niemi and Oduya or maybe to Calgary for a package of Wideman and Elliott. Not that I want Niemi or Elliot, but you can offer them up in the expansion draft. Wideman and Oduya(shoots left which may be an issue) will be a UFA next season so cap space is cleared. Even if you have to retain part of Girardi’s salary; that is less painful than the buyout penalty. Losing Raanta would suck, but getting rid of the Girardi contract would be worth it.
    Next I would explore Stepan for say Trouba. Maybe you need draft picks back and forth, but Trouba would fix a lot of problems and losing Stephan would be tough, but with Zibanejad and Hayes trending upward and Nieves in Hartford and Lindberg there’s a gap but it’s not insurmountable.
    Trade Klein. Not but he’s worth something and it clears cap space and positions.
    Then try and bring back Brian Boyle for a late round pick or maybe Puempel or Pirri.
    Now you have some cap space and positions available on D to bring in Shattenkirk as a UFA next year. Assuming he is not traded and sign with the 12 teams he is suddenly rumored to be interested in.
    Your D would be: Next Season
    Mc D Trouba Mc D Trouba
    Skeji Wideman/Oduya Skeji Shattenkirk
    Staal Holden Staal Holden(assumes not taken in expansion)

    Clendening as the 7th

    It’s a lot to ask for between now and the draft. but it’s achievable.

  14. Kris says:

    If they arent going to address the first line defense then they shouldnt do anything at all. Personally I dont think the price changes in the offseason for them.

    Based on Shattys comments that he is hitting UFA, his price surely dropped. I dont think hes the answer but I stick by offering a first for him to test drive him. This is not to increase this seasons chances, its to see if he is going to be worth the contract hes going to command.

    If Stepan is the player moved for a dman, I feel like that happens in June before his NTC kicks in. Personally, I think you can make a case why you should or shouldnt trade one of these players for the first pair rhd. The younger that dman is the more costly he gets. You gotta give to get and your better off dealing from strength then weakness.

    IMO drafting in the second half of the first round isnt as valuable as getting proven talent. You could get someone that slides for the wrong reasons, you could get a bust, or you could get someone that refuses to sign. It doesnt matter how deep or weak the draft class is. Even with a first or second overal pick you can mess up Eric Johnson and Jordan Staal with Toews going 3rd in that draft. Remember Isles/edmonton fans wanting to ” fail for Nail”, howd that work out. Unless im sitting with solid chance of having the most chances at a first pick when a generational talent is available, I’ll never have a problem with giving up a first for proven talent.

    • wwpd says:

      ^^^ found Glen Sather

      “offering a first for him to test drive him”

      • Walt says:

        that put a smile on my face !!!!!!!!!!

        • kris says:

          Im not gonna lie, I chuckled at Sather joke. However, I’ll say its only half right. Sure Sather gave away 4 first round picks, but Sather also waited and signed the big fish free agents. Which has worked better Nash/St Louis/ Yandle or Richards/Drury/Gomez/Redden? No amnesty buyouts to save Gorton on a swing and a miss at Shattenkirk, theyd still have Richards at 6.66 for another 3 seasons.

          Shattenkirk has never played top pair assignments. Id much rather give up a first to find out a player doesnt fit or isnt the answer, then getting stuck with a 7 year 6 plus NMC contract for a second pair defense man.

          • wwpd says:

            I pick c) none of the above 🙂

            I think you may be presenting a false dilemma here in suggesting that the only two options are (i) trade the future or (ii) sign big UFAs to high risk contracts.

            • Kris says:

              If you need a first pair rhd defenseman, you can develop one which there are none in the system. You can trade the future (draft picks or young kids with value) or via free agency. Anyone player that is a true first pair will cost money term and nmc, in free agency. Any first line defensemen in trade will cost assets with value. So with doing option C how would you get a first line RHD?

  15. Plaidshirtbro says:

    Who will lead the Rangers in goals at the end of the season?
    – It’ll probably still be Grabner, but with Kreider close in tow.

    Would you trade the Rangers first round draft pick and if so, what for?
    – Yes, for a RHD that we intend on keeping. Obviously this is not straight up, but a 1st with a forward for Vatanen, Trouba, Barrie, or a similar good RHD with a contract longer than 2 months.

    How far can the Rangers go without addressing their blueline?
    – Depending on our luck and match-ups, it’s either a 1st round exit against any Metro team, or we could even make it to the ECF going through the Atlantic division. But this is a bleeding team.

    How many career wins will Henrik Lundqvist finish with?
    – I think he hits 500, he could potentially topple Roy and hit 552, but the Rangers need to hold up their end of the bargain for that (assuming he can get at least 30 wins a season, this requires 4.5 more seasons of starting).

  16. pas44 says:

    Who will lead the Rangers in goals at the end of the season?
    It’s not going to be Stepan or Nash, I can tell you that!
    More on your Nash is going to break out theory, the last 2 times he did this he got injured. I would trade him before he starts to break down with more frequency. He is paid to put the puck in the net, grant it he has played well in all zones, but, the Rangers should have a deadly guy… other teams have them, so should we.

    Would you trade the Rangers first round draft pick and if so, what for?
    I don’t know, but its amazing to see some of the youngsters at the top of this years stats… really cool!

    How far can the Rangers go without addressing their blueline?
    Early Exit First Round – F-ing DEJA VU

    How many career wins will Henrik Lundqvist finish with?
    good one, I hope he can keep climbing the list of the best, he deserves them all!

    nice post!

  17. SalMerc says:

    Will everyone stop putting Girardi in any trade – IT AIN’T HAPPENING!
    Either AV decides to put him in a rotation or he plays until he is hurt – end of story.

    And the Taylor Hall / Adam Larsson trade was by a desperate team, and will not be repeated. Have some trust that Gorton is Not Phil Jackson. Raanta plays tonight and I expect some rust.

    We will be okay either way. Maybe not a Cup team as is, but we knew that anyway.

    • Walt says:

      Funny how for almost four years I’ve been on the get rid of Girardi bandwagon, and now every trade mentioned includes the guy. He is soooooo wash up, that the local laundromat closed from over use of the man.

      Bottom line, your right, and Marv won’t know what to do without him !!!!!!

  18. Peter says:

    The expansion draft is the elephant in the room folks. I doubt the Rangers make a splash of a move unless a clever end around the draft bogey is created.

    No, trading your best young defenseman, Skjei, to get a defenseman when your blue line corps is thin and old makes no sense at all.

  19. Bayman says:

    While still a great accomplishment, the King’s 400 wins should be put in historical context (‘Keeping in mind how old the NHL is’). Unlike the past, every game is now played to a W/L conclusion. How many games has Hank won that would have been a ‘T’, instead, in earlier days? Also, the teams plays many more games per season than in earlier generations.

  20. Bayman says:

    Criticism of Klein’s defensive play is fair, but I’d hold onto him for other reasons (no, not the two goal ‘explosion’ vs. Colorado). Without a true enforcer on the team, Klein has picked up the slack…being the first to defend teammates from cheap shots and illegal hits. As a result, I imagine he’s a stud in the clubhouse and it would be bad karma to deal him. Unless a potential deal is a no-brainer, I think Gorton should think twice before moving KK.

  21. Rich S says:

    Couldn’t disagree more with all the trade talk…Not since 94 has it helped us to win a cup …
    With the best, deepest group of young talented in the league, why not be sellers for once and try to get teams to over pay in draft picks for Stepan and Nash…
    Or package girardi with one of them and take less … addition by subtraction….
    Grabner should be resigned long term and we need to see what defenseman is available in the draft or free agency…..
    Trying to win every year and mortgage the future …..has not and will not work!!!!

    • Walt says:

      agree 10000000000000000000000000 % on your last sentence !!!!!!!!!!!!!

    • Jon says:

      Because all of the bad contracts have NMC or NTC attached to them. The Rangers would at the best be trading from weakness with limited trade partners.
      This team isn’t going to be competitive forever. They have some good young players but not the best in the NHL. I wouldn’t be afraid to trade Nash if the Right trade came about but I doubt his list (modified NTC) would have a team on it that needs a guy like him on it. There’s room for Gorton to retain part of his salary (up to 50%) but unlikely that his list has one of the few teams Gorton can do business with.

  22. Jon says:

    What makes Skjei an attractive piece to acquire for other teams is that he’s Exempt from the expansion draft. I think if the Rangers wanted Trouba, they should be able to do it almost straight up. Maybe a mid round draft pick would have to be included but that’s debatable.
    I think Vesey should be included in that list of “untouchable” Ranger players. He’s also exempt from the expansion draft with only 1 year of NHL service. The Rangers will also have other players that meet the criteria.

    A player I’ve had my eye on is Brett Pesce. A righty defenseman from the Carolina Hurricanes. He’s cheap, young, skates well, and moves the puck very well. He plays on a very good possession team but if I remember his relative stats were pretty good and if applied to the Rangers defense he’d still be at or over 50% mark. He’s not going to set the world on fire but he should be a good “under the radar” trade Gorton can make without giving up massive assets or over paying for a trade.
    Still of the idea that Kevin Shattenkirk is the best fit for the NYR. He’s young enough that a 6 year extension would end with him still in his prime. I think the Blues know they’re going to lose him in the expansion draft or in free agency. They have Petrangelo signed long term on the right side and Shattenkirk is a luxury on the 2nd pairing. He’s a top pair guy that would help the Rangers in a big way but flies behind Petrangelo in STL.

  23. 43 says:

    We’re in need of a right handed defenseman, so trade one of our right handed defensemen…?

  24. HARLEMBLUES says:

    I wouldn’t trade Brady for Trouba because Brady will be Trouba and at a lower cost. Trouba isn’t worth three to four million a year more than Brady. That would be another bad deal. Keep the young guns and use Stepan as the the chip to bring in a young RHD. Sign Shattenkrik at years end and don’t give up assets for him.

    • mojoguru says:

      Agree 100%

    • Richter1994 says:

      I love Brady for sure, but he’s no Trouba, if nothing else that Trouba is the righty the Rangers haven’t had since Rozival before his hip injury.

      • tanto says:

        Trading Skjei + in a deal for Trouba solves one problem and creates another. Then you’ll be looking to make a trade for a left handed d’man.

        • Kris says:

          Tanto,

          This may come off as a negative about Skjei but it is not meant to be, its just facts. His minutes/assignments are easier to get a suitable replacement than the minutes/assignments Trouba would get. The fact that Graves is close (some say yes, some say no, I dont watch AHL so I dont have an opinion) could fill his assignments.

          Skjei has vaule and is a good dman, but fixing first pair is most important. Graves and Day are in the system for LHD.

          If Im GM of the Jets and your calling about Trouba I hang up if I dont here one of these names, Skjei, Kreider, Miller, Hayes, Buchenvich, probably stay on the line if its Zibaenjad.

          • tanto says:

            I understand where you’re coming from, but 1) Skjei is exempt from the draft, Trouba isn’t … which means the Rangers need to find a way to expose Staal or Girardi …. we are already at risk of losing Holden or Klein in the expansion draft … 2) Shattenkirk will be available at the end of the season as a UFA pick up for nothing … 3) Day is a long way away and you can’t count on Graves just yet (he will go through the process — as AV is so fond of saying) … 4) Staal has had a bounce back year, but he isn’t getting any younger and like Girardi has suffered through you years.

            We just can’t afford to lose a good young d’man to get one, even if you’re getting extra value due to Trouba being a righty. Besides, Skjei has evidenced some flashes of brilliance with the way he can skate the puck into the offensive zone, it would be nice to see how he develops that talent over the course of the next few years.

            Rangers should stand pat. You don’t fix problems by creating new ones IMO.

            • Kris says:

              Im not sure Shatty is the answer, just because it doesnt cost assets to get doesnt mean its the best move. The only reason Skjei is an option IMO is Mac is ahead of him and possible replacements behind him, with no replacement in the void hes filling. Its not giving him away, its upgrading him to what we need.

              • tanto says:

                Point taken Kris, but adding Shattenkirk for nothing bumps the rest of our D’ back and gives us depth. Moving a good young expansion EXEMPT d’man for Trouba may be an upgrade (maybe less than people think) but it isn’t adding depth. Look at our forwards, we have a couple of guys on the 4th line that could play on the 3rd line of many teams and we have 9 Top 6 forwards (including Grabner based on his production this year). Quality depth is the way to go.

        • Richter1994 says:

          You can replace Skjei with Graves who is a lefty.

          • tanto says:

            The kid hasn’t played ONE game in the NHL and he’s replacing what we’ve seen from Skjei? Have always been a big supporter of Graves and believe he will develop into a good d’man, but he still has a way to go and has to prove it over time. I would rather keep Graves and hope Skjei will slot in behind McD when Staal breaks down and Graves solidifies his role as the 3rd pairing d’man.

            • Richter1994 says:

              Don’t forget my friend, you are replacing Skjei with Trouba, not Graves.

              McD-Trouba
              Holden-Clendening
              Staal-KK/G

              And then Graves can come in next year if some how G and Staal are gone.

              • tanto says:

                Given their relative ages you’re taking an awful big chance with Holden, Staal, KK and G — and Clendening is a 3rd pairing d’man. So sure, now you have a real good 1st pair but after that you’re playing with loaded dice.

                Shattenkirk on the other hand, at the end of the season is a true ADDITION with no subtraction.

  25. tanto says:

    Everyone needs to stop mentioning the expansion draft as a big issue in deciding what to do. Give Vegas the player you don’t want (preferably Pirri) plus a draft pick (not a 1st of course) to not touch the guys you want to keep. It’s been done countless times before. We also have 4 pretty good goaltending prospects that are all 2-4 years away, that might do as well.

    All I know is that I don’t want to lose Fast, he’s the perfect TEAM player and his value far exceeds his goal and assist totals … and yes, Lindberg is the perfect 4th line center (don’t underestimate the value there).

  26. craig says:

    Pleeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeese, no more trading away number 1 draft choices!
    Maybe some day, we will land a McDavid, Matthews or Crosby type of player for New York. When draft time comes, maybe NY fans can get excited for a change!

    • tanto says:

      We would have to really suck for that to happen and I don’t foresee us being a non-playoff team with a chance to win the lottery any time soon — besides, generational players don’t come along every year in the draft, Matthews following McDavid was an aberration. That said, yes we should hold on to our #1 this year.