All is quiet between Rangers and RFA’s DeAngelo and Lemieux
The hockey season is still about 2 months away, but training camp may open next month with both DeAngelo and Lemieux still unsigned. What is more concerning is the lack of information on any progress between the two sides.
It’s Going to Be Tight
The Rangers have around $1M in cap space after the Shattenkirk buyout. Once they have moved both Matt Beleskey and Brendan Smith to the AHL they will have over $3M. If both Brendan Lemieux and Tony DeAngelo sign their qualifying offers (both under $1M), the Rangers would have that breathing room they need for a call up in season.
However, since Shattenkirk’s buyout, there has been very little info on the RFA front. Unless of course you take into account the now deleted liked tweet by Tony DeAngelo.
Don’t sound the alarm just yet
Right now, it is too early for panic. Both sides could be negotiating as we ponder offer sheets and hold out scenarios. The Rangers are very tight lipped and feel no need to tell people what they are doing internally (as is their right).
Still, if we get past mid August without even a hint of talks between both sides, then you can worry. Because both RFA’s bring something to the lineup the Rangers desperately need.
In the case of DeAngelo, he is an NHL ready right handed defenseman the Rangers can move up if Adam Fox struggles. If he’s not here, Joey Keane will be inserted into the lineup and will be a big step down. With Lemieux, he is the only real gritty and physical forward they have. With the amount of rookies in this lineup, not having him will surely make it harder for them on a nightly basis.