Locking up Tony DeAngelo to a long term contract is a no-brainer

He's had a career year, but where does he fit?

What a year it’s been for Tony DeAngelo. A little bit of an afterthought heading into the season, DeAngelo has had a career year. If the season does not finish, he will end this season with a line of 15-38-53 in 68 games, good for 4th on the team in scoring, and most among defensemen.

The season may have seemed like it came out of nowhere, and in some regards it did. DeAngelo’s prior season was 4-26-30 in 61 games, so he’s close to doubling that output. He also came close to tripling his shooting percentage (10.1% this year, 3.6% last year). While there isn’t much of a career average for us to use as a baseline, it is worth noting that defensemen rarely sustain a 10% shooting rate.

What we can infer (again, infer, not conclude) is that DeAngelo’s goal totals will go down a little bit. A 6% shooting rate gives him 10 goals so far this year (about a 15 goal pace), which is likely more in line than the 20 goal pace he was on this season. Not a major difference, but worth noting.

Also worth noting is DeAngelo’s primary points (goals/first assists) is actually a little low at even strength. He has 9 goals and 10 1st assists (11 2nd assists), which is a 63% primary points rate. It’s about the same (15 goals, 18 1st assists, 20 2nd assists) when you include powerplay numbers. We can again infer that secondary assists may come down. May.

Now none of this is to say DeAngelo is bad or that his numbers are inflated. It’s just he may see a 10%-15% dip in points. Again, none of this is certain, just leveling expectations. This is critical because right now, as the lineup is currently constructed and utilized by David Quinn, DeAngelo is the 3RD on the team, behind both Jacob Trouba and Adam Fox. Until the team decides to use a righty on the left side, this will remain the case. Spot in the lineup matters.

All this brings us to the Evolving-Hockey contract projections for DeAngelo. These are much more palatable than the Ryan Strome projections, and has the projected term at five years and $5.9 million. Here’s the full breakdown:

  • 1 year, $3.86 million (4% chance of happening)
  • 2 years, $4.4 million (11%)
  • 3 years, $5.48 million (8%)
  • 4 years, $5.12 million (8%)
  • 5 years, $5.88 million (34%)
  • 6 years, $6.2 million (13%)
  • 7 years, $6.33 million (7%)
  • 8 years, $7 million (11%)

Again, these guys are rarely wrong, even if you don’t necessarily like what you see. That said, these numbers are about in line with what you might expect from a 23 year old, 60 point defenseman.

For the Rangers, the question isn’t about whether they can afford him. They can, especially since they traded Brady Skjei, essentially making the choice to keep DeAngelo over Skjei. The question is risk management. Is this season a blip? Possibly. Do you take a chance with young-20s blip over a mid-late 20s blip? Absolutely. Every contract comes with risk, but the risk here appears to be minimal.

In the current market, paying $6 million for 20 minutes and about 55-60 points is a bargain. Unlike the Strome projections, this seems to be a no-brainer for the Rangers.

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  • The Kid from Jersey found his home. His personal theme song is now “I can see clearly now the rain is gone”.

    That Instagram post he posted from game of thrones, the one that everyone thought was him saying goodbye to the rangers, it was really him saying behind the teens to Brady Skjei, see ya buddy, I came, I saw, and I took your overpaid role on this team deservedly …

    ADA is here to stay.

    Love the team mate attitude he’s got going.


    Dave, in all seriousness, thats for the posts, Godspeed everyone.

  • Tony is well worth the 5 years, $5.88 million (34%) contract for many reason. By all indications the man is a good teammate, defends his guys, and plays with a bit of an edge. He can skate, and paired with Jake, he could be a blessing in that because he can play both sides of the defense, it allows us to not force any player into a situation that he may not be ready for. Also, if Nils Lindkvist is as good as they say, he could slot into the third pair, right side with Staal, and add another offensive weapon to our game…………….

    • If you want to keep D’Angelo, the right side is full with mainstays Trouba & Fox. I hate to have D on the off side at even strength. The Rangers drafted so many talented defenseman the last 2-3 years, they’ll have some good problems on the back end. Just need to move Staal & Smith out ASAP. Next season is their last in NY. Maybe this summer one or both move on looking for a new deal with another team.

      • Hockey Post

        FYI, Tony has played on the left side, and stated that he is comfortable doing so.

        One or both Staal, and Smith could be gone, and this would give a youngster a shot at playing there. Due to the shut down, I could see where the NHL, and players association agree to some sort of buy out amnesty, and we could buy out Staal without a cap hit!!!!!!!!

  • The rising tide of Panarin raises all boats. Most of his primary assists are with Panarin on the ice, while few of his secondary apples are. A quarter(roughly)of his goals are with Panarin on the ice.

    Obviously Breadman is going to be around for a while, but how much would ADA’s stats revert when not playing with him?

    If they frontload it to keep the AAV down like they did with Kreider, you can flip him on the back end (with term) for real good value.

    • That’s just nonsense thinking! Hockey is a team sport! Would Potvin have been that good without Bossy or Nystrom? Come on! Broduer without Stevens? All good teams have players that compliment each other. when you find the right mix you sign them.

      You don’t blame Panarin for being so good that it is difficult to ascertain the value of the others. If you do, no-one matches up. This is absurd line that I just can’t take anymore. I’m tired of it and tired of isolation!

      • Potvin was elite well before Bossy was playing junior, was driving play until Trottier showed up and it went another level, while Nystrom only marginally improved.

        Stevens was good, but they weren’t winning squat until Brodeur showed up full time, Tererri’s sv% jumped 20pts (thanks to lighter equipment) while Brodeur was 8pts above that. After that, Brodeur’s Sv % was always 10+ points higher.

        I’m not blaming Panarin, I’m crediting him; hence the rising tide lifts all boats comment.

        The question is, will ADA(or Strome) maintain his production if he stops playing with Breadman? Prior evidence says probably not for Tony, probably yes for Strome.

        Kevin Klein & Nick Holden were shooting stars who racked up a lot of points blasting one timers stepping in from the point, ADA will likely do the same if he plays the left side on PP1. That’s great. But D production is predicated on usage, and he likely ain’t going to be used like has was going forward.

        Call it lightning in a bottle, but he’s gonna get paid whether he goes to arbitration or not, so structure any deal where MSG can use their cash flow advantage to the benefit of the club.

    • Yes Panarin helps Tony out, but he helps everyone out. That being said, the kid has the skill to get the puck on the net or pass it, and a pretty wrist shot when fed the puck down low. I think you understate his skill level a bit. I’d sign him long term. I don’t like to be cavalier about players with decent skill sets.

  • He’s earned a nice new contract extension, and he has wonderful chemistry with Panarin. He is also the PP quarterback the Rangers have been searching for for years. But do you pay a third pairing RD $5.5 million ? If he can play the left side, great, if not he needs to be traded. You’re not moving Trouba or Fox.

    • Supermaz

      Again, Tony can play on the left side, has in the past, and stated that he is comfortable playing there, no problem!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • I would definitely put him in the “must sign” category. The only issue, as usual, is the cap, but it’s more pertinent now because of the suspension of the season. When, or if, the season is re-started is going to have a huge impact on what kind of money’s going to be available. There may be upsides, like allowing another compliance buyout or two, or there might not be. Of course, all teams are going to be affected, and that makes the outcomes even harder to forecast.

  • I still say 2 years at $4M per (I was close based on the above).

    I love ADA, but he scares me a little. Not his hockey talent, his brain and emotional skillset.

    It does appear that ADA has figured out the fine line of playing on the edge while playing efficiently and productively. So maybe the 5 year deal is warranted. Again, only based on hockey skills? Then 100%, long-term lock up, but I worry about the combustibility factor over the long haul.

    I love the kid though and the edge that he plays on. Made the Stepan deal worth it, forget the 7th overall pick debacle.

  • When a player has the skill and the vision to pass like Tony does, and a decent wrist shot, good skating ability and a feisty attitude to boot, I think you lock him up.

    Regarding this season, Quinn didn’t really unleash Tony until almost December, so I’d argue that I don’t expect much of a regression.

    How many guys on the Rangers also went after Wilson like Tony did when they played the Caps, despite being a head shorter? Right. Sign him.

  • That 5 year $5.88 mil per season contract proposal sounds pretty good but the problem is that the Rangers clearly like Fox a lot and Trouba is locked in for 6 more years at top pair money.
    So in my opinion the largest issue I have with keeping D’Angelo is that he’s likely going to play in 3rd pairing Situations. He will likely play with the top PP unit given his skills but the right side is full. Are we paying just shy of $6 mil for a 3rd pairing defenseman?
    Granted, every single team that one a cup the last 5-7 years, has or had a purely offensive defenseman. The Pens have Letang among others, the Blues have Petrangelo and added Justin Faulk. The Hawks have Duncan Keith and the Kings have possibly the best 200ft Defenseman in the NHL with Drew Doughty.
    The Rangers will need a guy like him if they want to compete for a Stanley Cup in the next few years.

    • Hockey Post

      You fail to mention how for years we have been looking for a real PP-QB, and now we have Tony who does this very well. I think paired with Jake, it could be a very good first pair, with additional offensive upside.

      Look at guys like Paul Coffey, Larry Murphy, Phil Housley, Sergi Gonchar, Chris Latang, and the list could go on, and on. None of these guys could play a lick of defense, but could QB a PP, and score like there was no tomorrow. Bottom line, Tony is a very talented kid who has a skill set that teams crave, and we shouldn’t dismiss him for playing on his off side, and or third pair if that turns out to be the case…………………….

  • A 4-5 year deal at the numbers suggested is fine. There is a chance Nils Lundkvist could be the better player. If that turns out to be the case ADA is easy to trade. A lot of teams would take him. At some point they will need to trade one of Lundkvist or ADA as they have 3 good RHD on the team with Lundkvist on the way.

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