So what’s next for Rangers?

mats zuccarello

The Rangers had a pretty quiet offseason. There were no major trades. No major signings. The Blueshirts did their internal business, they re-signed all their key RFAs as their big-ticket items. The roster is more or less set for now. As we enter August, there may not be much left for the Rangers to do.

1. The biggest thing the Rangers are likely waiting on is the Erik Karlsson trade. He was being traded, then he was traded, now he’s not traded at all. Teams are hoarding their resources for that trade, and any deal involving Ryan Spooner, Vlad Namestnikov, and/or Kevin Hayes will likely wait until Karlsson is traded.

2. The blue line for the Rangers is still a bit of a mess, and I wouldn’t be surprised if Jeff Gorton addresses this before the season starts. That could be clearing room for some additional kids, or making a big splash to get an established young player. The Rangers are pretty good at keeping their cards hidden, so you never know what their plans are.

3. However, as it stands today, the Rangers don’t need to make a trade. The blue line is a concern, but a more structured system could bring out better seasons from Brady Skjei, Marc Staal and Brendan Smith. A healthy Kevin Shattenkirk helps things out. After that, it’s a big year for Tony DeAngelo, and I’m assuming Neal Pionk gets the last spot.

4. The forward group is the big reason why the Rangers likely don’t need to make a trade yet. The Blueshirts have the ability to begin the year with Lias Andersson and Filip Chytil in non-critical roles to ease them into the lineup. As they progress and earn more time, the lines can be shuffled around. No need to throw them into top-six roles if they aren’t ready.

5. The Rangers also have two of the more valuable trade chips this season and this trade deadline in Hayes and Mats Zuccarello. Both are top-six forwards on affordable contracts. If the season goes south quickly, but can fetch first rounders and more. That will be an interesting story to watch, but brings me to the next point.

6. I’m putting this out there: The Rangers have an outside shot at sneaking into the playoffs. The forwards and Henrik Lundqvist can carry the team, the way they have the past five years. If a more structured defensive system has the same impact we are all expecting, then this team could sneak into the playoffs. I don’t think they will –I think they will top out around 80 points– but it’s doable.

7. With point #6 said, I also want state that the front office should not be blinded by the playoffs, and begin buying to increase their chances. The whole point of the rebuild is to retain their assets, not sell them off for the #8 seed.

"So what's next for Rangers?", 5 out of 5 based on 7 ratings.

9 thoughts on “So what’s next for Rangers?

  • Aug 2, 2018 at 9:36 am

    Playoffs could be the worst thing that could happen. I do not want to derail the plan. Want a slow growth plan with a goal of 2020. I want Shervoykin here when we move back to the playoffs.

    We signed 2 kids real early as rfa’s. These kids (a Russian and a Swede) will make it tough to cut them come September. This may cause a logjam in the 3rd line whichay make a trade more probable.

  • Aug 2, 2018 at 9:49 am

    Bring in Chris Stewart on a one year deal or PTO

  • Aug 2, 2018 at 10:18 am

    A trade for Hayes + something for Trouba should still be in play. Both on 1 year deals and comparable cap hit. Trouba will still be an RFA next year. Hayes UFA. But the Jets need a 2nd line center and have D depth. We have the opposite problem. We would need to offer a little more for this to happen. But if Hayes is not in the long term plan a trade like this would help us realign assets where we need them.

    Also saw a rumor about a Russian RW Sergei Shumakov trying to get out of his KHL contract to sign with The Rangers. That would be an interesting off the radar move if there’s any truth to it.

    • Aug 2, 2018 at 11:25 am

      I would give up that thought for that trade because the Rangers aren’t high on him anymore. It takes two to tango and I doubt Hayes would resign there. I wouldn’t expect the most stingy GM of the league to make that bet on a guy who might not want to even stay there after he got traded to them.

  • Aug 2, 2018 at 10:39 am

    Even if chasing a playoff spot I expect them to be sellers. if in position for a playoff run its due to hank anyway.

  • Aug 2, 2018 at 11:40 am

    If Hayes really isn’t in our plans then I am happy to get a young defensemen like Trouba in return. Preference though would be to ship Zib instead. Draft picks for Zuc is fine as well though it will be sad to seem him leave the Garden.

    Although a good soldier, I wouldn’t mind seeing Staal’s contract packaged somehow somewhere even if we pay a majority or the contract going forward. Reason being I would like to see some more of the young guys in order to better appreciate what we got.

    Looking forward to seeing some of the young guys this season.

  • Aug 2, 2018 at 4:56 pm

    Your 2018-19 NY Rangers:




    Howden, Hajek, Lindgren, in the wings. This is the team, for now, unless something miraculous happens before the season starts.

  • Aug 2, 2018 at 6:31 pm

    I can live with that for now… I think putting Smith back to LD gives him a better chance to complete his redemption. The RD stuff added to his other miseries may have been detrimental too. Just my opinion.

  • Aug 2, 2018 at 6:51 pm

    Play hard, take your lumps and if it looks like the season isn’t going nowhere, tank hard and trade the guys that Quinn doesn’t prioritize to make room. Don’t scratch em or give em bottom 6 minutes, showcase them and move em on.

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