Preparing for the expansion draft

This offseason is expected to be a busy one across the league, as Vegas expansion looms large. Every team will lose one player to Vegas in the expansion draft, and with the rules set, teams are going to be making moves to ensure they are able to keep the guys they want. Expect a flurry of trades with Vegas and across the league. But the big question remains: Who will the Rangers expose and lose?

Before getting into that, it’s important to understand the rules of the draft. The rules are somewhat simple, but have some delicate intricacies that could make things more interesting. In addition to the rules of the draft, Vegas is allowed to make trades that could impact who they select in the draft.

The Rules
  • Each team must protect either 7 forwards, 3 defensemen, and 1 goalie, OR eight skaters (forwards/defensemen) and one goalie.
  • Any player with a no-movement clause must be protected in the draft and counts towards one of the protection slots. No-trade clauses are not included.
  • First and second year pros (in the NHL or the AHL) as of June 30 are exempt. Everyone else is fair game.
  • Unsigned draft picks are exempt.
  • Each team can only lose one player to expansion.
  • Free agents (restricted and unrestricted) are fair game, although it doesn’t really make sense for Vegas to draft a UFA.

So right off the bat, we know the Rangers –at the current moment– must protect Marc Staal, Dan Girardi, Rick Nash, and Henrik Lundqvist due to their no-move clauses. Brady Skjei, Jimmy Vesey and Pavel Buchnevich are exempt. From Hartford, the only player of consequence that will be exposed is Mackenzie Skapski. I believe the rest of the major names are exempt.

That’s it for the major rules, but there are two additional complications.

  • Teams must expose one defenseman signed through next season and has played either 40 games last season or 70 games the last two seasons.
  • Teams must expose two forwards who meet the same criteria.
  • Las Vegas cannot buyout any player selected in the expansion draft.

The second bullet point is what impacts the Rangers. Assuming the Rangers go the 7/3/1 route, they will likely be looking to protect Nash, Derek Stepan, Chris Kreider, Mats Zuccarello, Kevin Hayes, JT Miller, and Mika Zibanejad (RFA) up front. On defense, it would be Staal, Girardi, and Ryan McDonagh. Obviously they are protecting Lundqvist.

That means the players exposed will be Michael Grabner, Jesper Fast (RFA), Oscar Lindberg (RFA), Brandon Pirri (RFA), and Matt Puempel (RFA) up front. But if you look at that second bullet point, the Rangers would only be exposing one forward signed through next season. That poses a slight problem, but it can be resolved as long as Jeff Gorton inks one of the RFA forwards to a deal before the draft. If not, then the Rangers need to expose one of expected forwards to be protected (Nash can’t be exposed).

On defense, they’d be exposing Nick Holden, Kevin Klein, Steven Kampfer, and Adam Clendening (RFA). Rounding out the exposed players are Skapski and Antti Raanta.

Buyouts and No Move Clauses

This is another interesting aspect of the draft. Using our previous Anaheim example, perhaps they buyout Kevin Bieksa, who has a no-move clause, so that they can protect Josh Manson. In this scenario, they can trade Sami Vatanen as well, and get the most from their assets.

Another option: Simply asking Bieksa to waive his no-move clause for the sake of exposure. It enables Anaheim to again protect someone else over him.


This is an interesting wrinkle. Any player taken by Vegas in the expansion draft is going to have to pass through waivers before being sent to the AHL to start the season. And they will be forced to send at least seven players to the AHL via this method (they are selecting 30 players, only 23 roster spots available). This doesn’t even include any players they sign in free agency or acquire via trade after the expansion draft.


This is where all of the excitement is. Even before we get to the expansion draft, teams are going to be looking to move players to get under the expansion exposure requirements. Anaheim is a team that comes to mind, with possibly five defensemen to protect, but only six forwards that warrant protecting. They will lose either Sami Vatanen or Josh Manson to expansion. Why not trade one for a forward, and protect that forward? It’s a win-win for them.

Nashville is in a similar situation, but they may go a different route than the Ducks. They will likely protect eight skaters (four defensemen) and one goalie. Unfortunately for them, it means they will likely need to expose all three of Craig Smith, Colin Wilson, and Calle Jarnkrok. Jarnkrok is far and away the best of the trio, and on the best deal. Perhaps they send a draft pick to Vegas to ensure they don’t take Jarnkrok? Those deals are on the table as well.

Perhaps Dallas simply bribes with a draft pick to take one of their exposed goaltenders (Antti Niemi, Kari Lehtonen). They just acquired Ben Bishop and need the cap space, and Vegas has oodles of space to burn.

Or, perhaps the Rangers send Nick Holden to Vegas for future considerations. To fulfill those considerations, Vegas selects Sami Vatanen from Anaheim and simply flips him to the Rangers for a few draft picks.

Heck, let’s get crazy here. Perhaps the Rangers, desperate to shed money, get Staal to waive his NMC for a trade to Vegas. The Rangers send a pick and a prospect to sweeten the deal, and now are rid of that cap hit. Then Vegas, willing to eat 50% of the contract, dangles him to a team that still views him as a viable stay-at-home guy, but now worth it at $2.85 million instead of $5.7 million.

What does it all mean?

Buckle up. This is going to be a wild ride.

"Preparing for the expansion draft", 5 out of 5 based on 12 ratings.

63 thoughts on “Preparing for the expansion draft

  • May 22, 2017 at 7:26 am

    Vegas will build itself a fair team, with little star power. It has to hit the Cap floor somehow as well. They need to create some buzz with at least one name. Don’t be shocked if they go after an aging superstar. Maybe a Jagr if he is amenable to a move like that.

    As for the NYR, they need to use the draft and other team’s problems to help solve some of our own. It won’t fix all but it may help.

    • May 23, 2017 at 4:15 am

      We’re only a few moves away from going back to the finals

  • May 22, 2017 at 7:39 am

    This upcoming draft is very complicated, but there may well be some light at the end of the tunnel. The possibly of losing one of the twins, to the draft would be a coup. Some of the defensmen mentioned could be wonderful additions if we can work a deal out.

    I know that George Mc Phee is a shrew operator, and won’t give away the shop, so JG has got to do some serious planning, and negotiating with him, but I could see a deal made to improve both teams.

    Let’s get this draft over with,and start next season, I’m missing my team already!!!!!!!!!!!

    • May 22, 2017 at 8:40 am


      • May 22, 2017 at 11:45 am

        He very well could be a “shrew.” We just don’t know, do we? (;

  • May 22, 2017 at 8:12 am

    I have complete faith in Gorton.

    • May 22, 2017 at 11:43 am

      Wish I could say the same thing Jerry.

  • May 22, 2017 at 10:47 am

    I dont want to lose lindberg, grabner or fast in that order…

    Maybe let LV take one and then workout trade before hand to reacquire that player for stepan and pick[s]…….although some people here seem to believe stepan has more trade value than those 3 listed……I hope they are right…..

    I am starting to agree with Rick Dipierto who thinks Nash is wayyyyyy over paid for his production especially in playoffs…..maybe vegas wants some established start power as well?

    • May 22, 2017 at 11:07 am

      You want to trade Stepan … and picks … for Lindberg, Grabner, or Fast. Literally the dumbest thing I have read in a comments section this year.

      • May 22, 2017 at 1:33 pm

        Yes….because he stinks!!!!!
        Lindberg is younger, cheaper, faster, more physical, better defensively, willing to go to boards, hits, better shot , better on faceoffs……….
        Grabner, 27? even strength goals…….it might take stepan 3 years to match that…
        Fast….did you watch this years playoffs??????

        • May 22, 2017 at 4:00 pm


          Your anti-Stepan rants are SO over the top as to be borderline ridiculous.

          Did you read Brooksie’s column on Sunday? He provides a far more balanced and I would say accurate assessment. An excerpt–

          “Derek Stepan should not be turned into a scapegoat for the second-round defeat to Ottawa. Stepan is a perfectly acceptable top-six center for a contending team. His per-game production of 0.25 goals, 0.45 assists and 0.7 points is commensurate with his role. He is one of just 24 active centers to have played 500 or more games averaging at least 0.7 points per. And he does this while facing the opposition’s top offensive match essentially every time out.”

          I doubt seriously that ANY NHL GM would concur with your opinion that Stepan stinks. He’s far more reliable player than Kreider (stink), Miller (stank), or Hayes (stunk), especially in the post-season. None of those four players truly are bad players. ALL of them need to play much better if they are to stick around.

          There is a more than reasonable argument for trading Stepan. I get that. And I’m all for it for the right deal. But unless there is a way to acquire a 1C, I don’t believe we have any in-house answers at that position at the moment. The odds are, as currently constituted anyway, that we would backslide without Stepan unless we can find an upgrade.

          I say again, think back to what happened in 2015-16 when Stepan went down with the rib injury. The Rangers went through the worst stretch they have ever experienced under AV, and they didn’t fully recover until he was back in top form. I don’t believe that was a coincidence.

          Be careful what you wish for….

          • May 22, 2017 at 6:04 pm


            I read the article your quoting, and Brooks didn’t convince me then, nor you now. I still believe Daisy’s game is soft, and agree with the reason’s Rich stated as reason’s to move him.

            Can you honestly, not for argument’s sake mind you, not agree that Step won’t work the boards? Is he not slow? Doesn’t he have a weak shot? Isn’t as good as Lindberg on the FO’s? Isn’t as young as Oscar? Isn’t as good as Oscar on defense?

            When you break it down, Rich is right, and I’m of the opinion that he won’t be missed as you think. When he went down last season, as much as I loved Brass’ game, we weren’t as strong down the middle as we currently are today!!!! Get the best we can for him, before the NMC kicks in, and we would be stuck with the sweetheart!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

            • May 22, 2017 at 6:24 pm


              You make valid points. Not disagreeing that the Rangers shouldn’t look to deal Stepan. But i do NOT agree that he’s this train wreck center that some make him out to be. Consider the quality of centers that we are matched up against. He’s hardly overmatched most nights. Indeed, we’ve been pretty good at limiting players that clearly have a stronger pedigree. I don’t think he gets enough credit for that.

              Oscar has had very favorable matchups. I like the guy, but I don’t think we really know if he’s better than Step. My hunch is, taking the contract out of it for a moment, that if Stepan and Lindberg were both available and money and term were not an issue, that most every GM would select Stepan over Lindberg. He’d be a dynamic number two center IMO, and he’s passable enough as a 1C.

              I don’t think the Rangers or any team would give away a player like that for nothing. I understand the concern about the NMC, and it’s a valid one. But I think more important than just the saving money element is determining what else you would do with that freed up money and what kind of strength down the middle you would have. They might have to do something you might not like–go with an overpriced aging vet like Joe Thornton.

              I’ll say it again. If the Rangers let Stepan go without adequately replacing him, IMO, we will barely be a playoff team as currently constructed. I am VERY spektical of the so-called young “stars” we have.

              • May 22, 2017 at 6:33 pm


                You have yet to answer my questions about his game!!!!!!!!!!! Everything you posted is opinion, I think my questions are the issue…..

              • May 22, 2017 at 6:39 pm

                Well, your observations are opinions too, right? 🙂

                I think I did answer it. I’m speaking to his overall game. I think it’s better than he is given credit for but clearly, he’s not a star. I just don’t think he’s a liability and in fact, I think he brings intangibles that would be missed if not adequately replaced. And I’m very certain the answers are NOT in house at the moment.

              • May 22, 2017 at 7:11 pm

                Why does everyone’s assessment of Stepan break down in to how he would do in a skills competition? Is he the fastest player on the ice? No. Does he have the hardest shot? No. Does he work the boards the best? No.

                Does he produce at a higher rate than every other center we have? Yes!!!!
                Has he done it for more years than any other center we have? Yes!!!

                That’s what I care about!

                And for the record I have said I would be OK to trading the guy if it upgraded our team. I’m not on the bandwagon (or the Rich S drunk bus for that matter) that it would be addition by subtraction. You don’t add to the team by subtracting a CONSISTENT 50-60 point player by just dumping him for a bag of pucks a a 6 pack of bud ice.

                And to honestly say a 55 point player sucks? What a joke. Argue whether his production warrants his contract but to say the 3rd leading scorer on the team….which is a whopping 4 points behind the team lead….sucks? Why do I even respond to this load of nonsense!

              • May 22, 2017 at 7:22 pm


                At least you see the short comings that we have with Step!

                As for the points he gets, he is always with Nash, or Kreider, the leading scorers as far as goals, gets the most time on ice, is on the #1 PP unit, but still isn’t getting the production that other #1 centers around the NHL get. The money being paid isn’t a wise investment, we could do better than what he gets us, and the NMC will tie our hands for a few years to come.

                I didn’t like the way he negotiated his contract, then when he squeezed every ounce he could, he didn’t put out as much as years before. He is too comfortable, isn’t hungry enough, and is soft as a new born baby’s dump!!!!!!!!

              • May 22, 2017 at 7:55 pm

                Yes he doesn’t produce like some other 1Cs but if he is traded that doesn’t fix the 1C issue for this team!!!!!!

                There are 3 ways to add a center. Trade, draft, free agency. It took trading a 40 goal scorer to get Derek Brassard. What would it take to acquire an elite center? There isn’t a marquee UFA center this upcoming season that I know of. There’s a reason point producing centers never hit the open market lately! They are a valued commodity that teams feel are worth the investment. Honestly who is the best free agent center to hit free agency in recent memory? Brad Richards? Drafting a 1C doesn’t appear in the Rangers future (next 5 years ATLEAST). So how exactly are we fixing the elite center issue? Trading the best center to then bump the other 3 up in role, who have never produced even as well as stepan has in this “bad year”?

              • May 22, 2017 at 8:26 pm

                Exactly right Spozo.

                The problem is that before these guys become UFAs, the team has a choice. Pay (or perhaps overpay a bit) to keep them from going on the open market, or lose them. What I would ask Walt and others is, what choice did the Rangers have at that time? Could that money have been allocated in a different way? Based on who was out there, I dont think there were any other better options.

                The same exact thing is going to happen eventually with Kreider, Lindberg, Hayes and Miller. When they approach UFA status, they will also need to be paid or the Rangers need to be prepared to lose them. Stepan shouldn’t be faulted for wanting to be paid fair market value.

                So again, no problem moving on from him–as long as there is a way to replace him.

              • May 22, 2017 at 8:27 pm


                Come on my man, the guy is rated what #30 in the NHL, how much lower can you get and be rated there as a #1 center?????

                I would stay away from UFA’s, they always cost you a fortune, and never live up to expectations. I’d draft one, develop him, and go from there. As I see it, the kids on the roster are no worse that Step, and come a hell of a lot cheaper, why not try them, given the amount of ice time given Step, spread out to the others, we won’t lose any production at all!!!!!!!!!!! I suspect we may gain some at that……….

              • May 22, 2017 at 8:37 pm

                Walt, IMO, if you dont sign a UFA, and you take the draft and develop mode and hope that the guys we have will do as well, or dont replace Step via trade, our depth, which is the very core of why we are a solid top 8 team in this league, takes a huge hit. If those guys dont step up signifcantly, then we will barely be a playoff team.

                I dont think that is Gorton’s plan.

              • May 22, 2017 at 9:02 pm

                The centers on the roster are no worse?

                Throughout their entire careers they have produced worse than Step has. That’s a fact. At the age Hayes, Zib, and Lindberg are, when Stepan was that age, he was producing more than all of them. Simple facts. Contract aside, Stepan been better than all of them at every compareable point in their careers.

                I can’t wait until you start complaining about Zibs production vs the contract he is going to get this offseason.

              • May 22, 2017 at 9:26 pm


                What you fail to remember is when Daisy came up to the NHL, we were terrible at the center position, and the guy had the golden opportunity to play with the top wings we had, and still do. He also came in under another coach who didn’t sit him for passing gas, as our current coach tends to do with the younger guys. Also Hayes played wing in college, if I’m not mistaken, and due to the need for a center, he was played there????, not sure about that though.

                As to Zib, and upcoming contract, we’ll have to see. If he hadn’t gotten hurt, he was on pace for a better year than your girl Daisy, and has more of a shoot first approach than does Daisy, who is slow at getting passes off to the wings, and seems robotic to me. If, and when he doesn’t produce like he should, I’ll call him out the way I have others who go thru the motions……….


                As to your remark about being a top 8 team, that’s the problem with you, and many others, I want to be the top banana. I’m not into being a brides maid, which you seem comfortable being, I want to WIN and Step isn’t going to get us there. He has been a core member too long, and again I’ll state, he’s too darn comfortable, and too damn soft, hence the name I gave him !!!!!!!!!

              • May 22, 2017 at 9:47 pm

                During the first 4 years of Stepans career he only had an average time on ice that led the centers on the team once (his 44 points in 48 games lockout shortened season). So without seeing a chart that says who he played with, that tells me that 3 out of his first 4 seasons he wasn’t not seeing top line minutes and therefore not playing with the best wingers on the team.

              • May 22, 2017 at 10:59 pm

                That’s actually not correct Walt. I am most definitely not satisfied. I am just being realistic about where we are at the moment. You are saying we will be a better team without our current 1C by simply spreading the responsibility to everyone else. How does that get us closer to being the top banana? It doesn’t. We likely regress with that approach and might not even be a playoff team.

                I’m with you on the idea of dealing Stepan….IF we can find a better 1C. Be prepared then for the possibility a Joe Thornton kind of signing to fill the gap.

                As for the whole Torts vs AV thing re: young players…ask Kreider which coach believed in him more. Torts, who banished him to the minors after he pretty much saved him from an embarrassing first round exit in 2012, or AV, who has been in his camp virtually from the beginning. Hayes made an immediate impact as a rookie and has gotten more minutes every year. The only guy who’s any good that he didnt take to right away was Miller, but it turns out there were reasons. And go back to the articles that were out there when Torts was fired. Torts was also crticized for not giving Miller much of a chance.

                The whole “AV doesn’t play the kids but Torts does” narrative is significantly overblown, if not outright false. This whole year was about getting younger, was it not? Skjei, Vesey, Buch. AV played the kids and the team actually improved a bit.

              • May 23, 2017 at 7:22 am

                Spozo & E3

                If you watched the game last night, you both would have seen your theory that a team needs an elite center to go all the way made to look foolish. This was blown away by the Preds last night, who by winning put enough holes in it to make Swiss cheese.

                I saw a team that was missing two of their best centers Fisher, and Johansen sit out the game due to injuries. I saw a team with an above average goal tender. I saw a team with an outstanding defense. I saw a team that had a great fore check going, fought every battle along the boards, would not be denied. I saw a team that wanted the win more so than a much more talented team. I saw a team coached by a winner.

                I hate to say this but my team doesn’t have these qualities. We don’t impose our will on others. We for the most part won’t battle along the boards. Our defense is suspect, and they depend on Hank to bail them out time, and again. We have a coach that lacks the fire in his belly, to lead a team like Pete does. We have a team that more times than not refuses to play a 60 minute game. We have a #1 center who never mixes it up, won’t go into dirty areas, who would rather pass off the puck than lug it into the O-zone, who has contact aversion, and simply is a pussy. I would rather dump this garbage than go thru another season watching him do what he does.

                I don’t see us going after a big Joe at all. That would run counter to what JG is doing, why should he, he has the kids in house? Bottom line, trade Daisy, get the best we can, hopefully a player who is hungry, and could fill out his jock strap, rather than that wimp Daisy!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! That’s all I’ll say on this matter…………………………..

              • May 23, 2017 at 1:59 pm


                First of all, the Preds have not gone all the way yet. They are nothing more than the 2014 Rangers at the moment.

                Regarding the 1C, what I said was you need at least two of the following to win a Cup–

                1) A top tier 1C
                2) An elite shutdown pair spearheaded by a Norris-caliber player
                3) Defensive depth
                4) Great goaltending

                The Preds are very strong with 2 and 3, and Rinne was much like Hank–not a great regular season but really came on in the playoffs. So they have at least 2 if not 3 of the qualities necessary to win.

                The Rangers have one–the goaltender.

                As for the coach, Peter Laviolette is an excellent coach. Always thought so. But he’s a winner because he’s winning. Just like AV was a winner when he took the Rangers to the Cup finals in 2014. I’m not so sure the Islanders thought he was a winner, or the Flyers following their 2010 campaign when they consistently fell short of expectations.

                Was Julien a “winner” this year when he was ousted by the “loser” AV?

                As I’ve said before, winning a Cup doesn’t mean anything about what you will do in the future, nor does not winning one mean you won’t win it next year.

          • May 22, 2017 at 6:08 pm

            And in the following paragraph:


            Trade him if you can, expose him if you can’t.

            • May 22, 2017 at 6:31 pm

              I think he is worth something, and I wouldn’t put him out there just to rid us of his contract. As for his game, I think anyone who has read my post on the subject, I think it smells to high heaven!!!!!!!

      • May 22, 2017 at 4:39 pm

        I could not agree more, Rich S. is quickly becoming the name to pass over when you see it. It isn’t possible he really believes the crap he spews.

        • May 22, 2017 at 4:47 pm


          If I may, I do think in fairness to Rich, he is extremely knowledgeable and a passionate Rangers fan. Some things we agree on. Other things not so much. He lives a bit on the extremes about who is horrible (Stepan) and who is great (McIlrath, Kreider, Stepan and Hayes). But that’s cool. Passionate fans will often have extreme views.

          But that’s why we are fans and not GMs, who are usually a little more cool, methodical, patient and calculating then we fans can ever be.

    • May 22, 2017 at 12:02 pm

      Lindberg can get protected at the expense of exposing Stepan. Reading Dave’s other conditions, Gorton may have to expose Stepan or Zucc if one of the forwards expected to get exposed is not extended. I think LV would jump all over drafting Stepan because he could be their #1C next season… so why trade him and picks?

      • May 22, 2017 at 1:29 pm

        Addition by subtraction…..
        Stepan is an anchor to any line he centers………his wings always underperform…….
        I would trade stepan if possible in order to protect lindberg and grabner and fast in a heartbeat…..
        If some GM is foolish enough to trade for stepan , great…….

    • May 22, 2017 at 4:02 pm

      You can not get back a player that LV picks for at least a year . No trade to reacquire him can be worked out between LV and the Rangers no matter who they pick

      • May 22, 2017 at 7:17 pm

        The only other team that is willing to pay a 6D were when the Flyers picked up McDonald.

  • May 22, 2017 at 11:02 am

    I think something to consider is how much would we give up to be rid of Staal or Girardi through the expansion draft? We really need to move both, expansion drat for 1 and buyout for the other has the potential to be a good solution for us.

  • May 22, 2017 at 11:15 am

    I would love to see Gorton move Stepan this offseason. Has started to show signs of wearing down and moves to methodically. Also another thing is he never ever wants to shoot.

    • May 22, 2017 at 11:53 am

      Gorton needs to move sooner rather than later if he thinks Lindberg can move up the center foodchain. Stepan or Hayes needs to go to make room to protect Lindberg. Whomever of the two can bring back a larger return and not leave a large hole at 1C and get us a first pair righty defender would be awesome.

      Still think it is too expensive to buy out Staal.

    • May 22, 2017 at 2:34 pm


      He also suffers from “Contact Aversion Syndrome”, he is a puss!!!!!!!!!

  • May 22, 2017 at 11:52 am

    Trading picks to get rid of certain players is just a continuation of making the cupboard more & more bare. In the long term, draft picks are the royal road to success, even though the impact may not be evident in the short term. We iced the worst team in the AHL last season for a reason. Over X period of time, the Rangers will end up as bottom feeders, which will result in some plum drafts like Chicago & Pitt benefited from. As an aside watched the Windsor-Seattle game yesterday. The most noticeable thing about Ryan Gropp is that he likes to shoot all the time. He never hesitates. He was robbed of a sure goal when a D jumped across the net & blocked his shot into an empty net. Same criticism of him I had before, needs to keep his feet moving all the time. Sean Day made one spectacular end to end rush that reminded me of Brian Leetch or Paul Coffey. One of the fastest smoothest skaters you’ll ever see. Doesn’t carry the puck up often enough though & I still think he needs to up his intensity level.

    • May 22, 2017 at 2:38 pm


      Music to my ears, a young, puck moving d-man, who can skate!!! A far cry from our trio of the Twins, and Klein……….As for Gropp, this is something we as fans will have to make a mental adjustment to, a shooting center, WHAT???

      • May 22, 2017 at 7:53 pm

        Gropp is a winger Walt.

        • May 22, 2017 at 8:19 pm


          Goes to show you how much I know about our prospects!! Still, it’s going to be refreshing to see a shoot first guy in the line up…

          • May 22, 2017 at 8:28 pm

            On that we are in complete agreement. Our pass happy team lacks a true sniper. A true finisher. A REAL weapon. Not staying Gropp is that guy, but we need to find that guy at some point.

  • May 22, 2017 at 11:52 am

    You know, a month ago, I would have been bent out of shape over the prospect of losing Grabner. He was my answer to losing Hagelin. But I think we saw the REAL Grabner over the last few weeks and into the Playoffs. He wasn’t nearly as effective as he was earlier. Did he bottom out? Is this what we’ll get if he stays?. Still productive, but nothing like the “all-world” forward he was earlier in the Season.

    If that’s the case, I’d rather keep a Lindberg and Fast, and look to free agency to replace Grabner. Hey they found him, there’s gotta’ be somebody else out there to fill that role.

    • May 22, 2017 at 2:53 pm

      He stopped shooting 30%.

      • May 22, 2017 at 3:16 pm

        And he stopped cashing in on his opportunities. Felt like he had lots of breakaways, and mostly came up short.

  • May 22, 2017 at 12:03 pm

    Trade Stepan
    Trade Kreider
    Trade Staal

    Target players like:
    TJ Brodie
    David Savard
    Bryan Little



    • May 22, 2017 at 3:45 pm

      This is not a very good bottom 6 nor a good bottom pair.

      • May 22, 2017 at 5:52 pm


    • May 22, 2017 at 6:42 pm

      I would say there is ZERO chance that Clendening will be back. He may not even be an NHL player next year.

      • May 22, 2017 at 7:16 pm

        There’s a good argument to be made that he wasn’t this year, either. (;

      • May 22, 2017 at 7:57 pm

        AV keeping Clendo over DMAC was so stupid it was beyond comprehension. The excitement people had about him at the beginning of the year was laughable. He’s too small, too soft & was a liability in the D-zone. He’s not a good defender at all. Period.

        • May 22, 2017 at 8:31 pm

          Again, all on AV? Gorton and your defensive whisperer Beuke had nothing to do with it. I’m sure they fought AV tooth and nail. 🙂

          Neither are anything more than borderline NHL material at this point. Next year? Will be interesting to see if either are playing in the league in any meaningful way.

          • May 23, 2017 at 10:39 am

            your defensive whisperer Beuke

            This is you just trying to goad one into a useless debate.Not biting, enjoy the phishing!

  • May 22, 2017 at 12:37 pm

    One thought is to buy out Staal and then trade Brady Skjei to Nashville for one of their defensemen. This is a big win for Nashville since Skjei does not require protection. That could induce the Preds to give the Rangers very favorable terms. Skjei for Subban even up is too much to hope for I would imagine, but the Rangers might get a deal otherwise out of the question.

    I like Skjei, but you have to give to get, and if the Rangers buy out G or Staal, the fact that Skjei is draft-exempt is a wasted asset.

    • May 22, 2017 at 3:21 pm

      If you’re going to get rid of one or both of Staal and Girardi, why would you trade Skjei? You then would have to expend another asset to replace him. Plus, he’s the lone bright spot back there.

      Yes, you have to give to get, but you don’t give what you really can’t afford to lose. Unless the deal is so overly one-sided in your favor.

      • May 22, 2017 at 3:49 pm

        He’s saying that the opportunity cost of not trading Skjei for a superior defensemen on a team that is expansion-draft prone (like, NSH for example) probably exceeds what he’s likely to become.

        Because he is both promising (and doesn’t need to be protected), the rangers might be able to get a great player for him that they otherwise may not have gotten. The ability to hide Skjei for free allows a team like the predators to protect 10 skaters (instead of just eight).

        The only reason not to make the trade is that you genuinely believe that the kid’s a future Norris trophy winning type… because that is the sort of talent NSH possesses.

        Which, while I think he has great (maybe McD lite?) potential as a top 2, I’m not quite sure if I’d go so far as to say he’s (potentially, one day of course) Norris caliber.

        • May 22, 2017 at 7:14 pm

          Like I said—if the deal is overwhelmingly in your favor, then you do it. But really, how often does that happen? I’m pretty sure he’ll be manning the blueline next October.

        • May 22, 2017 at 8:01 pm

          To be of Norris caliber he will have to upgrade his play majorly in the D-zone. Too often I saw him get ridden off the puck too easily for a guy that size. Offensively he was a dynamo which was the complete opposite of what we were told to expect before the season started. Will be interesting to see how he fares when he moves up to second or first pair.

    • May 22, 2017 at 5:21 pm

      Nashville’s expansion draft situation is definitely something that adds an interesting angle for trades. I can’t imagine they’d move Subban, nor would I want his cap hit, but swap an exempt asset like Skjei + something else for Ryan Ellis is something to consider.

      • May 22, 2017 at 8:05 pm

        Why would we do that? How do we then protect Ellis? The same problem exists for Stepan. If he’s protected we lose Lindberg, who I prefer to Stepan. Trading Stepan before the expansion draft means getting draft picks or prospects who will then be exempt from the expansion draft. If traded to Minny before expansion draft, we could ask for Tuch & Eriksson Ek.

  • May 22, 2017 at 9:27 pm

    I believe the Rangers have a good group of forwards and its likely Vegas will scoop one of them at the expansion draft. The missing piece of the puzzle is a quarterback defenseman that can play along side McDonough and run the pp. Its likely before the draft they will move one of their young forwards for a younger offensive dman.

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