Irresponsible Rumormongering

Identifying New York Rangers trade chips

New York Rangers trade rumor season is upon us. This morning, Kevin looked at possible trade scenarios with the Arizona Cardinals Coyotes (I make that mistake way too much). Suit looked at the Rangers trade deadline strategy, which is likely about adding depth on the blue line. The Rangers have already been linked to Mike Santorelli and Antoine Vermette as well. Oh happy days.

No matter who the Rangers are linked to, they will need to identify the tradeable assets within the organization. That’s not an easy feat, as the salary cap looms, and the Canadian Dollar, which was supposed to be around .85 USD, is tanking hard to around .60. Acquiring someone with a large cap hit into next season isn’t doable unless salary goes the other way.

John Moore is the most popular name that appears to be expendable. He hasn’t won the 6D spot from Matt Hunwick, who appeared in exactly one NHL game last season. He’s another RFA that is due a raise (a raise on his $850k salary is mandated by the CBA), and that raise itself might price him out of New York. If Miller or Hagelin are dealt for an upgrade on defense, expect Moore to be an odd-man out for center depth.


On the current roster, any trade conversation that involves a decent amount of salary coming to the Rangers likely means Carl Hagelin heading the other way. Without rehashing the entire post about Hagelin: He’s a solid two-way forward who played on the third line here. He’s due a raise on his $2.25 million at the end of the season.

The Rangers appear to be set at the top-six LW with Chris Kreider and Rick Nash at the moment, and Anthony Duclair is knocking on the door to fill in that gap at an entry-level price. Losing Hagelin would be tough, he’s a valuable Ranger, but he’s probably the best roster asset the Rangers have at the moment and he’s replaceable in the future.

J.T. Miller’s name has been thrown around a lot as well, and it seems all but certain he will be dealt at the deadline for a rental. Trading Miller is something I touched on in October, and the Rangers will certainly regret it if they trade him for a rental like Vermette, someone they know they can’t afford next season. That said, I’m expecting him to be dealt.

There has been talk of Jesper Fast being dealt, at least among those pure speculation discussions. I don’t think this is going to happen though. He’s secured a spot in Alain Vigneault’s “circle of trust” and is a cheap, skilled, great two-way bottom-six winger.

In the system, the Rangers have a bunch of kids that appear to be blocked from ever making it to the Rangers. Ryan Bourque is first and foremost on this list. He’s a projected bottom-six winger, and the Rangers have too many of them to begin with. He appears to be NHL ready, but blocked by the Rangers extensive depth.

Marek Hrivik is another guy in Bourque’s position, but it’s unlikely he has nearly the same value. That’s not saying Bourque has extensive value (he doesn’t, he’s a mid-level prospect), but Hrivik is probably a notch below.

via Blueshirts United

Oscar Lindberg toes the “good prospect” line a bit. He’s been the Hartford Wolf Pack’s best forward not named Chris Bourque this season. He’s getting significant ice time, and will likely be the first call up should the Rangers deal with injuries this season. That said, unless the Rangers see him as a fourth line center replacement –or a 4LW replacement, which they should at this point– in the immediate future, he may be a decent chip that can bring back something valuable.

Guys that likely have minimal value: Conor Allen (25 years old, yet to secure an NHL spot), Danny Kristo (24 years old, yet to secure and NHL spot, UFA after this year), all of the prospects that project to be fourth line/bottom pairing guys (there are a bunch of them).

There are some pretty solid trade chips for the Rangers, who make up for their lack of a first round pick this season with some solid prospects/young roster players and a pair of second round picks this year (TBL, NYR). They have the tools to upgrade the roster, but the trick is using those tools properly.

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  • Dave, what do you think about someone like Adam Tambellini or one of the two Junior goalies the Rangers have? Think they might have trade value?

    Tambellini is having a good, albeit overage, season in the WHL and has NHL bloodlines to go with his over 6 foot frame (some front offices drool over that combo). Someone might be willing to overpay for that? We know the Rangers have tons of depth on the wing, maybe Tambo could be used as part of a package to get a rental?

    Halverson and Shestyorkin are young goalies so I could understand why no one would want them right now, but they did start games for their respective nations at the recent WJC.

    • I don’t think they are too keen on trading either Halverson/Shesterkin. Goalie is a weak position in the farm. Considering how long they take to develop, they are right in line to be NHL ready around Hank’s decline.

      As for Tambo, having a good year in the WHL, I was focusing more on guys in the NHL/AHL, since they are generally seen as “more NHL ready” than kids in juniors.

      • That makes sense. Again, I was thinking that Tambellini ticks a lot of boxes for certain GMs plus, he’s already 20 so he could be closer to the NHL than we think.

        • I’m always wary of guys that light up the WHL in their age-20 year. Too many guys light it up because they are playing against 16 year olds.

          • All the more reason to trade him then if someone shows interest, right?

    • As center isn’t a particularly deep position in the Ranger’s system, I doubt they’d be too keen on letting go of one of their top prospects at the position in Tambellini. Based on his current level, I doubt he’d be the centerpiece of any deal, and I don’t think the Rangers would be willing to throw in arguably their top center prospect as just a sweetener to any deal. I doubt he goes anywhere.

  • Pithy and on-point, David.

    If Hanzal can be had, John Moore and Lindberg going West I think he’s our best target: first, he reasserts some of Brian Boyle’s size at C. Solid face-off man, as well. And foremost he’s a banger.

    I’d like to see Michael Stone come our way, shore up bottom six D. Again, can’t coach size. Gives us more teeth with any Isles or Bruins series.

    • I doubt Arizona would want Lindberg back, it’s rare you see a team get back a prospect they already traded away once before he’s even made the NHL.

      • Speaking of shoring up our D with size… I’m not sure how they could ever swing this financially, but the rumor is the Rangers are interested in Cody Franson, who just rejected Toronto’s re-signing offer.

        He’s going to command $4.5-5 a year, though, so not sure how this is even on the table.

          • Would really hate to give up Klein. I think he’s a great value for his contract. Also, moving Klein would only clear half of the cap space required to keep Franson past this season. Franson is looking at at least Staal/Girardi money on the open market this summer.

            Keeping Cody Franson past this season would require a huge roster turnover. Actually, the Rangers are pretty much locked in on the top 5 D through next season. The only moveable piece is Klein, and again, I think his contract is a fantastic value. They’ll find/promote a new 6/7 D and probably keep Hunwick as the other half of the 6/7 combo.

      • I stand corrected, Chris. Well played.

        Forgot to drop the Adderall in my red-eye this morning.

        I’m solidly lining up with Chris A. here: perhaps dangle Tambo at Donny Maloney.

        I mean, didn’t his father, Steve Tambellini don the Fishsticks jersey?

        Bryan Trottier stepping behind our–our!–bench? Drafting the prodigy of Islanders. Gary Hart’s son role in Derek Boogart’s death!

        I know nearly every one of clued-in BSB poster hates Tanner Glass, but if that spare part has any singular, if not critical role it’s to annihilate Matt Martin.

        God bless Chris Nilan, Beuk, Kris King, Tie Domi…

        • I was thinking Edmonton as a destination for Tambo, his father (or it his uncle?) is still part of the “management” team in Edmonton right? Maybe the Rangers can get Petry, Marincin and Edmonton’s 1st round pick for Tambellini?

          (That was mostly a tongue in cheek comment)

          And please, let’s not mention Trottier around here again. The thought of him and his ridiculous 85 page binder that got him hired as a the Rangers Head Coach still gives me nightmares.

          And you forgot to bless Joey Kocur!

  • Looking at the Hartford roster for trade assets, I see at most Lindberg, Haggerty, Bodie, Skapski. And I’m probably optimistic to include Bodie. Ryan Bourque is a fifth or sixth line forward, that’s it. He’s a nice guy to have in case of injury, but he isn’t a top 12 forward on a good team. Remember he cleared waivers at the start of the season – someone could have had him for nothing, you can’t get anything in trade for him. Chris might have a little value since he has played in the nHL and seems to be in good form.

    I don’t really like the idea of trading prospects and draft choices for rentals this year. With the cap crunch, the Rangers need young (cheap) talent and the cupboard is nearly bare as it is.

    • I wouldn’t say the cupboard is nearly bare. The Rangers system is a bit misleading in that it’s best prospects, Skjei, Duclair, Buchnevich, Graves, Halverson and Shestyorkin are all playing outside of the AHL. Don’t forget rookies like Jesper Fast and Kevin Hayes and young but no longer a rookie JT Miller.

      I know you know all that, I guess what I trying to say is the Rangers can afford to move a prospect or three for the right deal.

      • I hate to see youth go the other direction for rentals. I’m not opposed to trading them for an upgrade, but we have to be able to sign, and keep whatever we get in return. Too many occasions we gave away the store for bull crap rentals, and we then had to start all over again!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

        • I hear you Walt, but remember, in those days the Rangers would usually have one, maybe two good prospects in the entire system.

          Like after the Cup win in ’94 the Rangers had Matty Norstrom and Niklas Sundstrom in the system … and pretty much nothing else. They dealt Norstrom who went on to partner Rob Blake for years and eventually became the Kings captain. Niklas Sundstrom ended up being an ok player. Trading Norstrom for Jari Kurri was a terrible move, but if the Rangers had another D prospect in the system at the time it might not have ended up being such a disaster.

          You can’t keep every prospect, you have to make a tough decision at some point and hope that, either you got lucky and kept the right prospect or, you have a big enough stash of prospects that losing one really good player isn’t the end of the world because your system managed to spit out two more good players. The Rangers are currently in the latter situation. They have a good number of strong prospects and can take a chance by moving some guys.

          Now, I’m not saying ship out Buchnevich and/or Duclair, but I think some of the lesser prospects can be moved out if the right deal is there.

          • You won’t get an argument from me on your points. My only issue is don’t give away assets for a short term rental. It just makes no sense at all to me!!!!!!!!

    • Most players clear waivers at the beginning of the year. Teams take stock in what they have. There are no injuries, etc.

  • Word from the Rangers is expected this afternoon about Lundqvist’s condition and there is “seemingly lots of concern.” (McKenzie)……uh oooooh!!!!!!!!

  • New York Rangers ‏@NYRangers 13m13 minutes ago

    #NYR Henrik Lundqvist suffered a neck injury and is out on a day-to-day basis. Further updates will be provided when more info is available.

  • Haglin is a giant part of our team speed for check and pk trading him would be foolish he’s a 3.5 mill a year guy nothing more. Very affordable. And a rfa we know how sather treats rfa. Fast I like alot great for checker hits everything I think moving him would be foolish also. Rangers don’t need to make really any moves a bottom six vet would be nice but not at a haglin cost. Amd hunwick will be very important in the playoffs. Rangers don’t have to do much I would be quiet this deadline. Move low level prospect for a bet role player. Inexpensive vet

  • Got killed in the FO circle tonight by Bergeron . Fast i see as a good 4th liner and PKer that will be affordable for the next 4 years . Biggest problem is Glass and how to get him off the roster .Looks like Kreider is finally starting to figure it out , has looked good pass 5 or so games . Would like Hanzel/Santorelli and Sekere / Methot but at what cost to this roster

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