Yesterday there was much discussion about the JT Miller and Evan Rodrigues rumors that could potentially address the Rangers center concerns. We know the Rangers are intrigued by Miller, and have bene for a whie. Rodrigues was actually a suggestion by the Liberty Blue Pod, a new podcast from Andrew Chelney and Nick Zararis. The Evan Rodrigues rumors are more speculation than rumors, but it does actually make sense in the right role.
JT Miller rumors continue
The JT Miller rumors are starting to turn into the Rick Nash rumors or the Brad Richards rumors. We all know the Rangers were connected to Miller at the trade deadline. We all know that the deal breaker was Braden Schneider, as the Rangers would not include him in a trade.
"It was essentially Nils Lundkvist, a first round pick, and Filip Chytil."@SatiarShah and @danriccio_ discussed the potential offer the Rangers had on the table for JT Miller in hour 1 of #Canucks Central!
— Sportsnet 650 (@Sportsnet650) May 20, 2022
The rumored offer for Miller at the trade deadline was Filip Chytil, Nils Lundkvist, and a 1st round pick. But that was at the trade deadline and with two postseason runs. Now it’s the offseason with one postseason run. The price comes down, but by how much, we don’t know.
With the Canucks re-signing Brock Boeser, they look to be retooling, and not rebuilding. At 29 years old, Miller is one of the elder statesmen among the Canucks forwards. With just one year left, he’s also their best trade chip to accelerate their retool. Lundkvist and Chytil would be a great return on their own, getting two cheap talents with top half of the lineup potential.
But is that what Miller will cost now? Is the trade timing –removing the urgency of the deadline– enough to lower the cost? What does one extra playoff run cost in a trade? Does Vancouver become desperate and take an even lower offer?
Evan Rodrigues rumors actually make sense
The Evan Rodrigues rumors, which again is more speculation and less rumor, actually does pass the sniff test. Rodrigues is wildly underrated, even with his career year (19-24-43) at 28 years old. He’s a monster play driver and tenacious on the forecheck, something the Rangers sorely need.
Until this year, a safe guess is that Rodrigues didn’t play with much talent, thus his play driving was a bit lost. Much like Filip Chytil. One season with Sidney Crosby, and he’s all of a sudden putting up 20 goals and 40 points.
But where the Evan Rodrigues rumors start to get muddy is the role. There are whispers he could be a 2C, and at the projected 3 years, $3 million per cap hit, that would be one of the best bargains in the league. But if he’s projected to be the 2C, then why not just give Chytil, who is six years younger, cheaper, and has a much higher ceiling, a legitimate shot?
Where the Evan Rodrigues rumors make sense is as the 3C. He drives play, plays Gerard Gallant’s style, and pins the opposition in their own zone. He’s your Anthony Cirelli. He shuts down the opponent by simply being all over them, and then capitalizes on his chances.
Rodrigues is a fine role player, and someone who would be a boost to the roster’s bottom six. That’s the role that makes sense for him. You can even pair him with Kaapo Kakko to form a fantastic shutdown duo with offensive potential. He’d be a shrewd signing in the right role.