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Should the Rangers Look at Parise If He Makes Free Agency?

Some people don’t think the Rangers need another big name winger, some think they do. Some think they need someone short term until the likes of Chris Kreider matures. What is clear to everyone though is the quality that New Jersey Devil Zach Parise possesses. This week, Parise agreed to a one year deal worth $6m with the Devils, in what looks like a compromise of a deal for both sides.

This deal seems similar to the situation that Henrik Lundqvist found himself in a few years back when he signed a short term deal before signing a new deal at the turn of the year – when he was officially allowed to re-negotiate with the Rangers. In all likelihood the Devils will continue to work towards a deal with Parise over the coming months and hopefully for them, come to a conclusion and announce something long term after December. However is he a viable option for the Rangers if Parise doesn’t come to an agreement? He’ll be a UFA next summer.

Thinking only about the cap maths, the Devils may have removed Brian Rolston from their cap but they still have issues to negotiate as only three defensemen have contracts beyond next season (not including potential rookie Adam Larsson) while a certain New Jersey goaltender will require replacing sooner rather than later. Even if Brodeur stays, his contract is up after next season too. As you can see the Devils won’t have much money to spend on Parise.

So, do the Rangers need him and can they afford him? In all honesty, in the short term Parise is absolutely a need purely down to his elite level. When a player of that ability becomes available he upgrades almost every team. However the Rangers are blessed with a ton of organisational hope on the wings so Parise may be a luxury that they could ill afford… Until you look at another area of Rangers the organisation.

With the impressive depth on the blueline, starting next season Dan Girardi is a luxury. He’s a good player but Pavel Valentenko and Tomas Kundratek should be NHL ready and Dylan McIlrath will be that much closer to the big leagues as well. That’s without considering any other prospects. Would you trade Dan Girardi to accommodate Zach Parise? There are not many fans that wouldn’t.

Removing Girardi’s deal as well as those of Erik Christensen (not needed), Ruslan Fedotenko (aging and replaceable) and Steve Eminger (replaceable depth) and you already have nearly $6.5m dollars in cap space and that is without accounting for the expiring deals of Wolski and Sean Avery who in the event of a Parise acquisition would certainly not be invited back. That would be another 5+ million in space. As you can see, the Rangers could afford to go after Parise if he became available. The only deal the Rangers have to worry about (as of now) after next season is Brandon Prust’s although Prust won’t command a major salary.

Parise will have an important decision to make next summer. Can he win a Stanley Cup in New Jersey? Can his club replace their legendary goalie and upgrade the roster to become relevant again or would the impressive young team across the river be more able to match Parise’s own ambitions? If a cup is his priority, Parise will surely at least consider alternatives even if the Devils manage to keep him.

Imagine a top 6 for the Rangers boasting Zach Parise, Brad Richards, Marian Gaborik, Dubinsky, Callahan and Stepan or Anisimov. Given the talent in net with Lundqvist and the depth on the blue line Parise makes this team one of the very best in the league and a cup that much more realistic. To reiterate; Parise may not even get to next summer. However if he does, the Rangers should think very carefully about grabbing the talented winger. Or should they?

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  • This article should have a sub-title that says “Duh!”. Parise is the perfect type of elite player for this team. He does absolutely everything on the ice and he fits a LW need for the team. There is absolutely ZERO doubt in my mind that Sather would do everything humanly possible to get ZP in Ranger blue if he became an UFA. And yes, he would move people (i.e Girardi) if needed to make cap room to pull it off. You just can’t pass on a player like Parise. He is the type of guy that puts you in a position to win the Cup.

    Take note here that (as mentioned) Parise could easily sign an extension in NJ and this would all be moot. Though, you have to wonder why he would want to. He would probably be the most coveted UFA in league history if he makes it there… meaning that he would get a hell of a payday. It is also is worth noting that if Lou can’t get him to sign by the trade deadline, you can absolutely bet that he will shipped out of town for a ridiculous ransom. And that team would then have a couple months to negotiate with Zach. I think Toronto would trade their entire franchise to get Parise… lol.

    So, all in all, this is one of those scenarios that most Ranger fans would dream about, but I’m not sure it is worth putting too much thought into yet. There are just too many hurdles along the way.

    • Toronto would definitely be big players for Parise whether by trade or as a UFA but I believe if he makes it to FA (no sure thing) then he’d surely go to the club that gives him the biggest chance at a Cup – making the Rangers a viable option.

  • Zen
    Your right on the money with your post. Lou will do whatever it takes to re-sign Zach, or get a ton in return for the kids services. You can bet on one thing for sure, he won’t trade Zach to the Rangers!!!!!!!

  • if the rangers trade the house for him at the deadline or persue him heavily in the offseason – which i doubt theyll have cap room for – ill find another team to root for.

    • don’t worry. there’s more chance in me suiting up for the Rangers (I’m a terrible skater) than there is LL trading his crown jewel to NYR. The only way the Rangers have a chance at Parise is if he made it to free agency.

  • I have always been a big fan of Zach and the way he plays, a truly elite LW that this team could use right now, but who is to say Kreider or hagelin won’t become an elite LW in the league?I’d also just like to ask why everyone sees girardi as a luxury. He led our defensmen in points last season, led in blocked shots, and played against the league’s best with staal. I hope we never lose that guy until his play stars to slip.

    • Hagelin may become an elite NHL’er but probably not an elite scorer. Kreider may well become that type but what’s the harm in having a couple of elite LW’er?

    • It is not about wanting to trade Girardi… it is just that he makes more money and he would reap a larger return than other d-men on the team (other than Staal… who won’t be moved). To me… the only d-men you don’t trade are Staal & McD. All others are fair game, given the potentially incredible amount of young defensive depth in the organization.

  • 1) Parise and his father HATE the Rangers with a passion.

    2) There’s no trading at the deadline with the Devils because in the history of both franchises WE HAVE NEVER traded.

    3) We don’t have the cap space.

    4) If he hits the open market he will be one of the most heavily pursued UFA’s post-lockout.

    So the odds of getting Parise are very slim, but hey i’m all for it if we don’t give up EVERYTHING.

      • You seem to be ignoring the fact that “all that cap space” is completely unknown, because a new CBA could roll the cap limit back significantly.
        And even if it doesn’t, you have to re-sign Brandon Prust, and presuming that he progresses, Michael Del Zotto. Neither will break the bank – but with a 64mm cap, you’re down to around 12mm available. With that you have to accomodate 2-3 forwards, a backup keeper (Biron’s contract is over @ end of this season), and a 7th D. With the depth in defense and the prospects presumably being more ready for full-time NHL duty, acquiring a “star” left wing is certainly possible.

        As I argued (with many in late June), I see no way that Parise isn’t locked up by the NJD. I predicted that they would protect him by means of arbitration, and suggested that a short term deal (with continuing negotiations for a long term deal – just like Lundqvist) was likely. He will be a NJD when all is said and done.

        • I think he’ll re-sign there too. BUT, if loyalty is trumped by ambition he’d be wise to look elsewhere. Once Brodeur finally calls it a day that franchise will a good few years away from deep playoff runs.

          • Do you guys seriously think Parise will go to another team let alone the Rangers?????

  • Our history with Debbie sloppy seconds has not been stellar.

    See how he does this season first. Coming back from two big injuries.
    But I am sure we could always scratch another Debbie mark on our headboard.

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