Rangers re-sign Kevin Hayes to one-year deal

The Rangers and center Kevin Hayes have agreed on a one-year deal at $5.125 million, per Elliotte Friedman. Rumors broke yesterday that the Rangers were not going to get a long-term deal done with their 2C, and this shows just that. Hayes will continue to be the 2C, but now he is likely just a warm body until Filip Chytil or Lias Andersson are ready.

I’m not a big fan of the deal, mostly because I think Hayes is under appreciated and he is a solid 2C. However I do understand the need to create roster spots for more elite talent. At this rate, I expect Hayes to be a deadline rental somewhere.

Just my spitballing here, but I’m guessing the Rangers wanted to trade him, but couldn’t get to a deal.

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  • i would think he will be motivated for a huge year with big contract potential going forward and a young age. A 1st round pick in a trade is not enough.

    • Would have rather seen a 2 year deal. Just don’t know….is there upside in this guy or does he max out at 50 points per year? If he is maxed out, glad no 5 year deal.

    • I think it’s wide open on what could happen from now to then. Panarin is probably the top FA that they want to target. If someone like Kreider and Zib have similar seasons while the team fails to make the post season than they could be sold off.

        • Seguin will get a extension by Dallas before December 31st. I think the idea of signing him is out of the question. This was why I thought JT was more likely to dip out and sign elsewhere than player’ s like Seguin and Coture. He loves it in Dallas so I think he will stay down there.

          • Maybe, could happen as you say, but there are a lot more valuable FAs next year than this year.

          • Isn’t Panarin like the only elite player? I been going with the flow with that news so I don’t know of any other big time names.

          • Panarin is very desirable because he’s still young and he is elite.

            There are other good players as well, but older.

  • Kind of disappointing. I have liked Hayes trajectory over the past few seasons.This will have mixed impact on his trade value. And make no mistake, he will be traded.

  • I like Hayes, and agree he will be history by the trading deadline. The writing was on the wall for all to see, with the line up of kid centers. Chytil, Andersson, Howden, Zibby, Name, and Spooner just to name a few.

    The team is in need of scoring wings, so the bread man may well be the target. with our first #1 pick this season, we can develop into a very strong scoring team.

    I just hope that this isn’t a mistake, because Hayes did a fine job on the third line, and the PK………

  • Over 5 mill for 1 year tells me alot about what both parties knows he’s worth. I’m still going to hold out that a deal could be made if he starts the season with NY. The obvious case for him to become a rental is there but maybe this is a prove it type of deal in a different sense of things like if Zib continues to not reach 50+ points and while the young center’s show they aren’t ready.

    If this is to expose him in a trade than I’ll say good luck with your future top line/6 contract Mr Hayes. I’m sure contenders will jump all over you while you get a chance to play with someone like Laine in the playoffs.

  • I get that the trade market never developed but the fact that Spooner Hayes and names will all be on the team next year after using 2 firsts on centers and trading for a former first rounder … Seems like terrible mismanagement. ‘Oh but were gonna play the kids.’ – more narrative than anything else.

  • I really hate to say this because I am a Gorton supporter, but this is like the worst thing that they could have done. Now Hayes is a lame duck looking for a big pay day next year. This doesn’t help the team, it helps Hayes.

    The Rangers had to have known what the deal was with Hayes and should have traded him already if they had no intention of keeping him long term.

    So now, no team will take him unless they can extend him and now Hayes has a watered down trade value as a rental in Feb. So all they did was take their best trade asset and watered it down tremendously, all for a few more wins that will mess up their draft spot.

    There better be a “part 2” to this (sign and trade), because if Hayes is still here by Christmas then this is a disaster. I’m not happy with this.

    • Even more of a disaster would be if Hayes was traded by march yet zucc … Somehow dodges both deadlines…

      • IDK what happens with Zuc. He wants to play here as he took less to stay the last time.

        He could be traded and then re-signed for a low risk contract. But I’m not sure how the Rangers view him.

        As opposed to Hayes, I was pretty sure that they didn’t want to pay him long term, which is why I was shocked that he was still here.

        • He actually opened up about how he’s totally cool with getting traded. Go check his interview out on

          He basically told the reporter that he doesn’t want to be around if their’s a chance that the kids will just play for the sake of gaining experience and toss out the season. He was almost coping what AV preached about young player’ s and accountability.

          Your last sentence is you fitting in your narrative since it seems like it kind of goes together. You’re still scratching your head to why he’s still here instead of looking at the obvious that contract talks took a wrong turn. I don’t think it meant that JG didn’t offer him a similar extension like Zib with a bit more money.

    • Your first paragraph is exactly why I think he turned down a long term contract of 4 or 5 years and $ due to believing himself. I bet he wouldn’t want a 5.5-5.7 million dollar deal because he knows how he would excel at. If I’m him or his family and agent than I would assume that he needs PP and more OZ starts.

      There’s alot of different kind of conspiracy’s to what the Rangers knew Hayes wanted to sign as a extension. I think they offered him his top 6 role and PP with a decent chunk of change. Teams that came calling in for him and the market raised the bar. Hayes agent must have said eff that deal that they presented and declined. He wins in this situation, at the end of the day he will get paid to a team that would make multiple trips in the playoffs.

      Over 5 mill is a good size contract for 1 yr especially if you want to consider how he hasn’t touch north of 50 points yet. My theory is that Hayes might want just a little north of 6 million with some security in place. Rangers take care of him on this one year deal and make him prove that he’s truly the better center on this team but with all the uncertainty going on with this roster, he now still has a chance to sign a extension and stick around.

      • Yes, all this is great for Hayes as long as he doesn’t get hurt or have a bad season.

        But what does this do for the Rangers going forward? Nothing. Worse draft pick and tainted trade asset. Lose lose.

        • I already explained why I think they’re doing this. I think this is a mini prove it type of contract. I think it’s a win or lose type of deal for JG which is exactly why I’m not feeding in your narrative of them never having him in some sort of long term plans. They would have had a combination of JT, Stepan and Hayes traded by now if it didn’t go down that way. He was all over MSG because they had a plan in place to resign him. Quinn and him already had a relationship before he became the new coach. Both sides have came out that they were talking all last season. What do you think about? Prob why he’s still hear getting paid nicely on a 1 yr contract.

          Maybe this was why Brooks always added in about how Zib could be traded rather than Hayes in all his articles?

          Maybe why JG has been on the record after the Stepan and JT Miller trades about how Hayes played a role to why he could trade them?

          It’s risky on Hayes side if it’s true that he wanted to continue to be a NYR. In a miserable season with another sell off, he could be the guy to go simply because he pissed off the management by not taking their deal that they already sketched out for him. He could also show that he’s the man iwhile Zib doesn’t live up to the hype or another injury filled season.

          • If this were a prove it contract then I would think that the Rangers would want 2 years.

            This is a pretty high $$ amount for one year. I would be very surprised if Hayes re-signed here after this year.

            He did leave Chicago.

  • Another mistake by Gorton, should have unloaded this Mr Softie for a pick. The other was resigning that washed up enforcer ( he was finished 5 years ago).

    • Agree with you Bobby that Hayes is certainly not a banger…..has he ever even thrown a check with that Huge frame? However, he is a very good offensive player and with that long reach is very difficult for opponents to get the puck from him in the o-zone……and he may be our best center.
      If we dump him we have only 3 forwards over 6 feet and 200 pounds……
      Tiny team! They will get killed this year!

  • It’s a two way street here guys. Hayes obviously knows he isn’t part of the Rangers long term plan down the middle.

    At least they didn’t let this go to arbitration where each side rips the other a new one.

  • I expect Hayes to be traded to one of these teams; Columbus, Winnipeg or
    Ottawa. My bet is Ottawa for the rights to Brady Tkachuk..if this is the case I deck other players to be also included.
    The only thing to be determined is the timeframe, but it will happen. If it’s not Ottawa then it will be a Panarin from Columbus or Trouba from the Jets .t

    • Nah. Why would the Sens trade a cost controlled top flight young prospect for a in his prime guy looking for 6m plus per season?

  • The second half of the season, Hayes really came on and made somewhat of a believer of me. Before that, I wasn’t a big fan. Many times to much ditsy doodling and hesitation with the puck, not shooting enough. He has learned to shoot more and uses his reach as an advantage. In my opinion, he is a good third line center on a good team. He is still fairly young, but definitely not close to elite or worth 6 million a year. If that is what he wants, hasta la vista!

  • Tony,

    As I mentioned to you for the past 6 months, I know 100% the Coyotes will check in on Hayes to see what Gorton asking price will be. Hayes is very high on Chayka and his staff, told straight to my Italian ears, lol

    I know for certain Gorton has asked about Jacob Chychrun in the past, that is asking high but this will be interesting how this pans out. if you have noticed Chayka been making deals, setting up a big move because the Owner must have the Coyotes in the playoffs this upcoming season, much is contingent on this..arena deal, future partners, etc..

    AZ will be one of the teams calling about Hayes at some point this season.

      • That’s interesting. I think there will be many buyers for Hayes during the season. Teams are always looking for centers and he’s a good one.

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