According to Larry Brooks, the Rangers offseason plans are absolutely insane
Last night, Larry Brooks posted a column full of updates about the Rangers and their plans for the future, throwing gasoline on the fire of trade rumors and setting up what could be a potential roller-coaster of an offseason.
First off, Brooks wrote that the Rangers do not plan to buy out Girardi and eat dead cap space, which is understandable to an extent. But they also have not asked him to waive his NMC, and don’t plan on doing it. The 32 year old defenseman has four years left on his contract with a $5.5 million cap hit.
You know where I stand on this deal, and if the Rangers plan on having Girardi penciled in as their top pairing, right side defenseman, then the team isn’t going to improve at all. I understand why you wouldn’t want dead cap space right now but there should be an effort made to try and infuse youth and new, more skilled players into the defense.
Brooks went on to talk about Keith Yandle, saying what mostly everyone has been fearing; it’s likely that he will walk because the team can’t afford him. Thankfully, the two sides have been talking so all hope is not lost, but Yandle is not planning on only negotiating with Jeff Gorton and would test the free agent market.
If Yandle walks and the rest of the defense stays the same, it will show that the organization hasn’t learned from their past mistakes, overvalues their gritty, blue-collar veteran defenseman, and it will be a complete waste of Antony Duclair and two first round picks. Also, it’s total neglect of the problems at hand without trying to solve a thing. The way @HockeyStatMiner said it on Twitter is perfect; Wondering how to keep Yandle while not considering a buyout or trade of Dan Girardi is like starving in a supermarket.
What really made the Rangers fan base explode was this – everyone not named Henrik Lundqvist, Brady Skjei and Pavel Buchnevich (and apparently Dan Girardi too). That means Ryan McDonagh, Derek Stepan, Derick Brassard, Chris Kreider and others are all AVAILABLE.
What?!?! If you won’t’ remotely consider cutting ties with Girardi but will put that list of players up on the available list, you deserve to be fired immediately. It also makes no sense. Not trading Henrik Lundqvist means that you plan on trying to win and contend for the cup. But trading your entire young core and some of this season’s best performers means that this is more than just a retool, it’s heading into rebuild mode.
Gorton and the Rangers need to choose one route – rebuild or retool. They seem to be stuck in the middle of the two choices which could lead to managerial mistakes and hasty trades that don’t make sense in the long run. Brooks also said that it’s extremely unlikely that the team goes after Stamkos, or that they try to trade for Kevin Shattenkirk, which makes this fire even more confusing.
The players that Gorton is seemingly willing to trade is also baffling. Ryan McDonagh has been a good defenseman while being dragged down by subpar defensive partners for most of the past few years, and his cap hit ($4.7 million) is an absolute steal. Derick Brassard is still young, improving each season, and also has a really affordable cap it ($5 million) for his production.
The Wild are supposedly very interested in acquiring Minnesota native Derek Stepan. Stepan scored a career high 22 goals this season and plays a tremendous all-around game, playing an important role on the power play, penalty kill, and in both zones at even strength. The Rangers tend to not win that often when he’s out of the lineup, so they would need to get a hell of a return for Step, a young and improving forward.
The Wild supposedly were in on Ryan Johansen, and offered 22 year old defenseman Jonas Brodin and a forward. Brodin is a left handed shot, right side defenseman, who has never scored more than 19 points in a season and is known for blocking shots. He also had a corsi for percentage of 44.5% this season, along with a -5.2 CF% rel and a -4.8 FF% rel. If the Rangers add another defenseman like this to their lineup, I may go insane.
The one bit of good news out of this entire article is that the Rangers will be in on pending free agent winger Jimmy Vesey when the Predators lose his rights on August 15th. Vesey was the 2016 Hobey Baker Award winner for the best NCAA hockey player and scored 24 goals and 46 points in 33 games with Harvard this season. Adding him to the prospect pool would be absolutely fantastic.
Posted on May 26, 2016, in Rangers Updates and tagged Chris Kreider, Dan Girardi, Derek Stepan, Derick Brassard, Glen Sather, Henrik Lundqvist, Jeff Gorton, Keith Yandle, Larry Brooks, Madison Square Garden, Marc Staal, MSG, New York Rangers, New York Rangers blog, NHL Trade Rumors, NY Post, NYR, Pavel Buchnevich, Rangers, Rangers blog, Rangers trade rumors, Ryan McDonagh. Bookmark the permalink. 4 Comments.