One question for the mailbag this week, but it’s a long one. As always, use the widget on the side to submit your questions.
Guillermo asks: If you were GM, what would be the moves you make with a two-year window?
This is very difficult to answer, mostly because drafts are not my strong suit and while I like to believe I can figure out trade value, I’ve learned that I know nothing. With that in mind, a lot of this needs to be taken with a grain of salt.
- There will be a taker for at least one defense contract.
- The Rangers are still a destination for free agents.
- Reminder: I’m not doing a significant amount of research on this. Just basic look ups on stats and what’s readily available.
- Reminder: Every single move here can be nitpicked and holes can be poked. This is just what I would like to do.
- Draft Kaapo Kakko. The rest doesn’t really matter and won’t have an impact the next two seasons.
- There’s a precedent for trading up from where the Rangers will draft again (20) and move into the teams while giving up a 2nd or a 3rd. Given the need for quality, I’d explore that and make the deal if it’s there.
- I think the Rangers can make a splash for Jacob Trouba at the draft. I’m guessing the cost would need to be a 1st round pick — so the trading up thing goes away in this scenario — and some collection of roster depth and a solid prospect. Let’s be optimistic and say the Rangers are able to include Neal Pionk in it. I wonder if the Rangers move on from Jimmy Vesey in this deal as well. Winnipeg is in a tough cap spot, and I am woefully ignorant when it comes to valuing cap space.
- With Trouba, Adam Fox, and Tony DeAngelo in the mix, Kevin Shattenkirk can be sent away at 50% retained for a few picks to recoup anything lost in prior deals. All signs are pointing to Shatty being dealt anyway, so this isn’t much of a shock.
- Buyout Marc Staal.
2019 Free Agency
- Artemi Panarin, assuming he doesn’t get some outlandish deal that makes a team ::cough:: Florida ::cough:: look silly.
- I’d re-up Fredrik Claesson, I think he did a good job last year.
- Sign Jake Gardiner, again assuming the cost is appropriate.
- Long term deal for Buchnevich. Short term deals for DeAngelo and Lemieux as show me deals.
- The Blueshirts need a 2C backup in case Filip Chytil is better off as a winger. I wonder if Marcus Johansson could be had on a short-term deal?
- Chytil should be given every opportunity to succeed at center.
Lundqvist/Georgiev. Yes, Shestyorkin to the AHL.
- Pending UFAs are Kreider, Namestnikov, Fast. I’m torn on dealing any of them because the above lineup can likely finish top-three in the Metro.
- I wouldn’t spend major assets buying at the deadline, at least not until the lay of the land in the East is obvious.
- I know that dealing Georgiev is a popular take, but there’s no need to rush Shesty. The mid-round picks the Rangers would get for Georgiev aren’t really worth rushing Shesty to be the backup.
That’s a very rough edition of what I think I would do if I were the Rangers. There are obviously some holes here, mostly because I didn’t do a significant amount of research and comparisons.