Kevin Fiala trade rumor: If available, Rangers should move quickly

Kevin Fiala trade rumor: Should the Rangers go after him?

It looks like there is a new Kevin Fiala trade rumor, per Elliotte Friedman on the 32 Thoughts Podcast. Fiala, a 25 year old winger in Minnesota, only has three goals in 18 games this year, despite having strong underlying numbers.

Fiala has back to back 20 goal seasons, so the three goals this season is a far cry from his normal numbers. But as we’ve seen, shooting percentage has been kryptonite for most NHL GMs, unable to see past a high SH% for big contracts, or a low SH% for giving up on players. If Fiala is truly available, the Rangers should move swiftly to augment a position of weakness.

The big difference in Fiala’s numbers this season, as opposed to his three year average, is the GF/60. That’s what a 5.1% shooting rate does to you, especially when your career average is double that. He’s still averaging over three SOG per game, so that number isn’t off. He just hasn’t had a bit of that luck factor yet this season.

Fiala, in the last year of his deal making $5.1 million, and is an RFA at the end of the deal. Per Evolving-Hockey, he’s projected to make $6.4 million on a 5+ year contract on his next deal, as the next deal buys out many UFA years. He’d be expensive, but he fits multiple needs for the Rangers as a winger who can be either a short term stopgap (and then traded again), or a long term solution.

Again, if Fiala is actually available, Chris Drury should be quick with his decision making. He has many pieces at his disposal to facilitate a trade. The concern would be the trade cost and the eventual longer term contract should the Rangers go that route.

The Kevin Fiala trade rumor is a bit of an odd one, as it seems odd to give up on a guy with that much skill. Especially when he’s just 25 years old. Something seems off, but NHL GMs never cease to amaze.