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Cheap UFA targets available if NY Rangers walk from Ryan Strome

We do not know for certain if the Rangers will walk away from Ryan Strome following arbitration. But we do know they are planning for life after Strome. If there is nothing coming back for Strome, then there is another hold to fill on the roster. The kids will get their shot, but the Rangers like insurance policies. Cheap UFA centers are still there for the NY Rangers to target if they go this route.

The emphasis here is on *cheap* UFA targets for the NY Rangers. Strome’s walk away point is $4.54 million, which is likely a number the Rangers don’t want to touch, even if it’s not for Strome. It’s also a good assumption that the Rangers don’t want to commit to term, so players like Mikael Granlund, Erik Haula, and Carl Soderberg are probably of their list. At least for now. Things change as the season gets closer and players are without jobs, of course.

Colin Wilson – Center, Colorado

Wilson missed almost all of 2019-2020 with an injury that required surgery. He remains unsigned and it appears the Avs are ready to move on.

Colin Wilson is not a guy that’s going to fill in a 2C role, but could be depth on the bottom six. This assumes the Rangers go with Filip Chytil to start as the 2C. Wilson could feasibly fit in as a 3C if Brett Howden can’t hold that position down. He put up 27 points in 65 games in 2018-2019, and if healthy he could be a low cost option to fill out a 3C role. Per Evolving-Hockey, he would be cheap on a one-year deal at $842,000.

Brian Boyle – Florida

Boyle’s name has been floated around a lot, and it mostly has to do with nostalgia. Going on 36 years old, Boyle would need to find his game to really fill in as a viable center depth option.

If the Rangers were going to go with Brian Boyle, they likely would not have signed Kevin Rooney in the offseason. Boyle would be nice to see back on Broadway, but a viable option he is not. He’s actually more expensive than Wilson too, coming in at $1.074 million.

Trevor Lewis – LA Kings

Lewis is a name I’ve seen tossed around, and he, like Boyle, is probably not that much of a viable option. He would come cheap at $900k, and he is going to be better than Boyle, but he’s not going to be someone who can fill in on the third line if needed.

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  • I greatly doubt the ‘walk-away’ scenario. Unless a trade takes place, which I also doubt is going to happen now, I think that the Rangers are going to sign Strome to a short term contract prior to his arbitration date.

  • As things stand, the Rangers are not going to walk away from Strome.

    What you are proposing is a significant roster weakening to gain cap space they don’t need in a year they can compete. The goal was always to replace Strome with a good center, not a marginal one – with an eye toward the future rather than the present.

    • Rangers will absolutely walk away from anything above the number. They’ve done it in the past and they can assess forward value. Above $4.5mm, bonus overages get really hinky to manage.

      I can barely skate and I could almost put up 60 with Panarin if I went to the net after passing to him and kept my stick on the ice.

      But a hard pass on all the guys mentioned.

      • “I can barely skate and I could almost put up 60 with Panarin if I went to the net after passing to him and kept my stick on the ice.”

        Why??? Yes overall Strome still kind of sucks… He’s not I can do what he can do next to a superstar bad though…

        If you can “hardly skate”, then you can hardly keep up in a Bantam level practice.

        NBA, NFL etc fans never act like this.. I never once heard a NFL fan claim they can be a OL for some top running back.. Or a wide out for some HOF QB..

        Btw keeping your stick down doesn’t resemble good skills, no matter who you play with. It’s timing and all about routing to be able to head towards the net. My 10 yr old self would be able to stick check you and force you to kiss my goalies post.

        I think that Strome deserves better respect… Right now “2c” Chytil can’t even hang with Panarin 5v5, shift after shift.

  • I would certainly take a good look at Mikael Granlund on a 2 year or less deal, unless term is what’s holding him up right now. That said we don’t really have to do anything other than just resign Strome, regardless of his number in arbitration.

    • I’m with you on Granlund for a couple of reasons (1) fellow Finn and a buddy for Kappo (2) career plus player (3) 2-way center for the 2nd line that allows Panarin to take chances. I was really hoping Wennberg was the Rangers choice for this spot.

    • Mikael Granlund isn’t a legit top 6 center. He can fill the position for a bit if need be but his past suggest that he’s a winger. His best days were when he was playing on the flank at about 100% rate with Koivu as his main center.

      There’s literally no point in adding a winger of his caliber to this roster. He doesn’t win faceoffs as a winger like JT Miller does for the Nucs. Pass!!

  • These 4C level cheapees are Jack Johnson level and priced similarly and accordingly.

    If these are the “alternatives” there is no alternative and we are in no position to walk away from Strome.

  • A Strome signing may cause a ripple effect on the team, where another player (maybe Buch) gets moved to ensure we have enough Cap space to let some of the kids with bonus’ play. I am sure in a perfect world, Strome would be back, but we are very tight on Cap space. Someone will be a Cap casualty.

    • Nonsense. Even at $4.5mil per, we have about $5mil left in Cap space. Why would you trade Buch and replace with a $900k player on the roster?!!?

      • Still have to get Lemieux under contract, will need $5mm free to start the season to account for ELC overages if they all make the opening night roster.

        Kravtsov’s injury will likely make this moot, but it’s still an issue.

  • The whole situation about Strome is because DQ will play Strome where he feels is best and not what is best for the team. If you can’t control the coach you need to get rid of the players. The GM is trying to put a team together so that DQ has no excuses and then could be shown the door. Don’t let the door hit you in the ass.

      • What I think does not matter. The problem is what I see. At this time I have no confidence in DQ from the bobble headed decisions he has made so far. Fillip appears to be ready but DQ isn’t.

    • This is one of the most ridiculous comments I ever read here, and that’s saying a lot. You are suggesting that Gorton needs to put together some sort of conspiracy to get rid of Quinn?! If Gorton wants to get rid of Quinn, he would be gone. SMFH

      • Are you so lame that you don’t understand even if Gordon puts together a great team the silly coach will succumb to his stupidity! There is no conspiracy. I say a lot of ridiculous things that can’t be the most!

        • No, I’m not lame, I guess I’m just not a self proclaimed genius! What I do know is how the chain of command works in the world. If Gorton ( correct spelling Genius ) wanted Quinn gone, he would be looking for a job. Sir, you may want to consider a name change that suits you level of intellect. I’m thinking Resident Moron!

          • Resident Genius was given to me on this website. Why so personal. I guess U are not smart enough to see I was making fun of Gorton. I am not claiming that I am smart just that U are Dumb. I am hitting you with the jaw of a jackass and you are getting mad. You are the one thinking you are smart. I have no doubt I am neither smart nor dumb. Loosen up and have a little sense of humor.

  • If you think the players that you mention is a step up from Strome, your sorely mistaken.
    I would not walk away from Strome. They are holding tight right up until arbitration, or they will trade him.

  • I love this blog but this is so horribly written that I’m commenting for the first time ever. I expect some typo/grammar missteps in blog writing but this is atrocious. The content was mediocre but the writing is just plain awful. It doesn’t take THAT much time to re-read and make sure that you are writing consumable content for you audience. Do better.

  • Ok, it’s either a much better 2C through a trade or Strome.

    The Rangers expect to make the playoffs this year, which is probably why Chytil will not be the 2C.

    • As we bantered previously, Rangers should let each of these kids develop at their own pace instead of rushing them (like they have done with Hajek, Kravtsov, Howden, even Chytil…). Let Chytil play on the 3rd line between Laf and Gauthier and let them beat up their competition like Brassard, Zucc and Pouliott did a few years back (before any talk of Chytil being 2C).

        • I agree 100%! Keep Strome for 1 more year. It buys the Rangers (and JD) time to figure out who represents the core and fine-tune the roster next off season. Like JD pointed out, Rangers are playoff contenders now but are far from Cup contenders (his words, not mine)

          • No contest between Granlund and Galchenyuk — the only good thing I can say re: Galchenyuk is that he would come cheap and could be good for depth (but depth only). He would be Plan C.

            Granlund versus Strome is a tougher call based on their respective $s and term.

          • no, lol. Not with his proven chemistry with Bread.

            If he’s replaced, then I would want a big upgrade, if Chytil is not the guy.

  • 1yr deal for Ryan. Either move him at the trade deadline or he becomes expansion draft bait. The Rangers cannot afford to have yet another expensive unmovable long-term contract on the books.

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