State of the Rangers

How does a flat salary cap impact Strome and DeAngelo contract projections?

As it becomes more and more likely that the NHL’s salary cap will remain flat at $81.5 million, players hitting free agency are not going to be happy. For the Rangers, that means the initial contract projections for Tony DeAngelo and Ryan Strome will likely come down. The question is how much.

Again our friends at Evolving Hockey have their salary cap models, which are some of the best out there. They are rarely wrong, and when they are it’s because they missed on the term, not the dollars.

For Strome, who was projected to get $7 million on a long term deal at the $84 million cap, the numbers come down a bit, but not significantly. EW’s model originally had the most likely scenario for Strome at eight years at a $7.6 million cap hit, with the second most likely scenario a five year deal at a $6 million cap hit. Five and eight year deals are still the most likely scenarios here, but with lower cap hits.

  • 1 year, $4.75 million (3% chance of happening)
  • 2 years, $4.945 million (4% chance of happening)
  • 3 years, $5.9 million (9%)
  • 4 years, $5.7 million (8%)
  • 5 years, $5.8 million (25%)
  • 6 years, $6.6 million (17%)
  • 7 years, $6.4 million (3%)
  • 8 years, $7.4 million (31%)

Strome (26 years old) is arbitration eligible, so the Blueshirts still have that option of him being awarded a one-year deal and just sticking to that number, likely around $4.5 million-$5 million. However if both sides want a long term deal, this is what we are looking at because the deal would cover a large amount of UFA years. Considering what some other forwards are signed for, and how Strome had more points this season, it’s a logical assumption to make. However given some of the risks, it makes you wonder if he’s worth that kind of deal.

As for DeAngelo, his projections come down slightly too. Originally most likely to get a five year deal at around $5.88 million, his most likely scenario is still five years, but at $5.7 million. The Strome contract projections have been very high and have rubbed people the wrong way, but the DeAngelo projections are much more palatable.

  • 1 year, $3.7 million (4% chance of happening)
  • 2 years, $4.3 million (11%)
  • 3 years, $5.3 million (8%)
  • 4 years, $5 million (8%)
  • 5 years, $5.7 million (34%)
  • 6 years, $6 million (13%)
  • 7 years, $6.1 million (7%)
  • 8 years, $6.8 million (11%)

DeAngelo (24 years old) is also arbitration eligible, with one and two year options available. This gives the Rangers the option of kicking the can down the road again, but I don’t see that happening. Trading Brady Skjei essentially freed up that cap space for DeAngelo, and it appears he is their biggest priority this offseason.

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  • Whether or not Evolving Hockey was good at predicting contracts during a stable period does not imply the same success in this unique situation. One crucial factor, which is hard to predict, is how much each team will spend on salaries. There are always two factors – the actual cap and the eagerness of teams to spend to the cap (or to be limited by financial considerations and not the cap). It seems almost certain that a number of teams will undergo voluntary belt-tightening.

    In the case of Strome, this is very important. His numbers suggest a big contract, but his career has been spotty and he has played with Panarin. The reason EH might have been right before is because there were enough teams in the hunt that there was always someone who would ignore red flags, follow the numbers, and overpay. With fewer teams, that may no longer be true.

    Personally, I think the idea that the probability that Strome will get a contract of two years or less is 7% is laughable.

    • That may be partially true. The usually fiscal teams may just be as tight as a ducks ass in a frozen pond.
      That’s not to say there won’t be 10 or so other teams that need a pivot and won’t have any problem paying him $6+ Mil over 5 or 6 years. Strome would still technically be in his prime at the end of that deal.
      I highly doubt there won’t be a number of GM’s willing to overpay a player in order to draw fans to the games and trying to improve the on ice product.
      If not, the Rangers could always let Strome be awarded a 1 year contract from an arbitrator and kick this problem down the road to next summer.

      • I see the Rangers going the 1 year route with Strome. You could be right about other GM’s following the Jean-Gabriel Pageau model and paying him. Pageau has a somewhat similar track record to Strome.

        With the cap not increasing and the Shattenkirk penalty kicking in I just don’t see the Rangers in position to offer anything like what Evolving Hockey projects, even though they are considered quite creditable.

        Strome seems destined to have to prove it over and over. And he needs to stop taking so many penalties. Agree with Ray the 7% EW estimate is laughable – I would put it at almost 50% given the current climate.

  • Personally, I don’t see any reason the Rangers should offer Strome a new contract. Trade him now while his value is high for draft picks and/or cheap entry level contracts. Maybe you get a team in need of a centerman that offers up a valuable young asset or a 1st round draft pick.
    I wouldn’t pay Strome that money. The way the Rangers are structured, they need the puck moving defenseman more. I felt that is what they always lacked those years they were competitive and went to multiple East Conference champs and the Cup Final. Hank, Staal, and Smith come off the books next summer. Trade Strome and see if we can’t get ADA signed to one more 1 year contract awarded by the arbitrator this summer (whenever that may be, the playoffs may still be going by then) then hopefully next summer the cap increases and some other money comes off the books as was noted above.

    • We shouldn’t have waited on ADA in the first place and now you want to wait another year? Just like with trading a player a year early as opposed to a year late, signing a player to a long term deal a year early as opposed to a year late pays dividends all through the contract.

      • Agree 100%, Tony D will not be getting cheaper after another season like the one he just had. Back-to-back 50+ point years will put him into the $6.5 million+ annual salary bracket. If the overrated Tyson Barrie can reasonably expect that average salary (or more) based on 2 straight 55+ point years, then Tony’s a $7 million annual salary player by comparison.

  • Hit the bricks, Strome. Those contract projections are horrendous. Tony D will be the better contract and the better player over the next few seasons. Not to mention a good D-man is worth more than a forward pretty much every time.

  • They’re rarely wrong … well add another wrong to their “small” list of failed projections. Over $7M for Strome on a long term deal? Not happening. He’s had two good years, one ages ago and the other centering one of the best players in the NHL — a player who clearly drives any line he plays on. I don’t see more than $6M and no more than say 3-4 years — although I think Strome would be wise to take a 2 year deal and re-enter the UFA market in 2 years.

    Re: Tony D, I would give him 6-7 years @ $5.5M +/- 250K … the kid is the real deal, take him to 30 years old.

  • ADA should be the priority here. 100%.

    Strome’s stats should be even better than what they were, playing with Panarin. Countless opportunities lost because he can’t finish Panarin’s plays. Chytil can, much more talented. Panarn-Chytil-Kakko should finally be a thing.

    Time to clear the cap decks. Staal and Smith are no brainers, and if the Rangers can find a trading partner for Hank and he agrees, then they should do it. Hank obviously not in the Rangers’ plans going forward. Hey, it happens, regardless of my own personal heartache with this.

  • There is no way in hell the cap stays flat. This is a revenue driven league split 50/50 so if the income is down how does the cap not go down? Anyone who believes that needs to take a cols shower and wake up! This cap will be going down to around 70 million and that’s a fact.

  • Posted this on the 2C thread, but applies here also. Trade Strome this offseason. Assuming they can get fair value, it makes the most sense.

    Can the Rangers get one of the young centers from St. Louis (Robert Thomas or Jordan Kyrou)? + _____ for Strome? Thats the type of deal that makes sense. St. Louis is in win now and the Rangers could use a cost controlled high upside center to take the 3C role. Use the immediate cap space along with a young defensman to attempt to get that elusive 1LD.

  • No long-term deal for Strome please. The Rangers have young centers in the pipeline to replace Ryan. If the team is struggling at the trade deadline (if there is a season) he should be trade bait.

    DeAngelo is the real deal. The Rangers should sign him to a bridge deal.

  • It would be a pleasant surprise if some team wanted to offer anything of real value for Strome’s RFA rights. Better to sign his arbitration contract and deal him at the next trade deadline to a playoff team looking for solid depth 3C after pumping his stats playing with Panarin another year. Worst case scenario is just rangers make the playoffs and I’ll take it.

    Tony D – sign him for 4-5 years and find something else to worry about.

  • I think Strome takes less to stay…3 year 13.5m. He has bounced around enough in this league to understand how fragile it all is…making 4.5mm per year in NYC, there are worst things.

    Gorton for all the good he does…does a lot of dumb things as well.

    Trading Graves…colossal mistake…wish Quinn/JD were here before they traded him away.

    Throwing in Miller to land Hajak….tragic.

    Not signing Tony last year for 3 – 4 years for 3.5mm per will cost him 2mm per year going forward.

    The good GM’s sign their stars before they become stars…just look at Boston’s first line.

    How good would the Rangers already be if we had Graves next to Trouba and Miller next to Kreider and Mika.

    Sometimes the best deals you make are the ones you don’t make.

    Sakic picked the perfect time to fleece Gorton….just as Yzerman was fleecing Gorton.

    That being said…Gorton has done some terrific things.

    He just needs to limit the really bad ones…because when they are bad…they are bad…drafting Lias…another bad move….not picking Bode Wilde and picking goalie…another bad move.

  • 3 days now Dave.. Still no new news? Maybe by noon today? Lol

    They should have never paid Trouba that 8 mill. He’s basically being paid Subban type money which is insane to think about. The next 2 season’s will show how bad he is in the DZ. They should have went after Scandella when he was with Minny or Buffalo. Strome is worth 4-5 year deal a little above above 5.5 mill vs Trouba at 7×8, no question about it.

    There has been only two terrible hockey plays from the past decade. The famous one in 2011 with Tanner Glass missing the open net in the playoffs vs Boston. Than the other one in 2018 playoffs with Trouba holding the puck on the boards like a idiot from Bantams. He single handedly lost the series for the Pegs vs Las Vegas.

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