Per Larry Brooks, the Rangers are looking to make a big splash at the deadline, and Elias Lindholm is at the top of their list. Lindholm is one of better centers that we know to be available at the deadline, and Brooks is noting that Chris Drury and James Dolan want to go for broke and make this a Stanley Cup or bust season.
In today’s Patreon post, I was hesitant to get behind this strategy since Lindholm’s rumored cost is at least a 1st and a big time prospect/young roster player. Brooks speculated it could be Kaapo Kakko and a 1st, which is way too much for a rental.
Another question that needs to be asked is Lindholm’s production. Calgary has been a tire fire the last two years, so take the above with a grain of salt, but he’s had a significant drop off following his 2021-2022 season. Is he really that bad? Likely not. But will he return to his career best? Also likely not.
The most realistic scenario is Lindholm looks like he did last season, when he was a little above breakeven. Still a net positive, but not the game breaker that requires a haul to acquire. Adam Henrique, on an equally poor team, has better metrics. It’s not a be-all-end-all of discussion points, but it’s worth noting.
Elias Lindholm and the Rangers are a fit on paper for sure, but at what cost? Especially when much cheaper options that may have better production on the ice are available.