Does John Moore Have A Future With The Rangers?
Let’s begin with this, John Moore is a good young hockey player. His future in the NHL is bright, yet asking the question if it will be on the Rangers is fair.
The 23 year old defenseman was part of a package deal 2 seasons ago. The infamous Marian Gaborik deal to Columbus. In exchange with Moore, the Blueshirst received Derek Dorset (now in Vancouver) and Derick Brassard. The centerpiece of the deal was Brassard, a former 1st round draft pick and center man with great upside.
John Moore was also a 1st rounder, 21st overall in 2009. He just concluded his entry level deal and is working out a new one with NY. He has no arbitration rights and therefore no leverage to work with.
While it is still early, the fact that a contract has yet to be worked out is a growing concern. It was just last season that Derek Stepan held out with basically no leverage at all. The hold-out certainly impacted not only his season but his line mates as well.
The difference here is simple. There was no one in the organization ready to step up and take Stepan’s place as the #1 center. John Moore could be fighting for his job with the likes of recently signed Matt Hunwick.
Both defenseman have prior experience in the NHL and could easily step in as the number 6 defensemen.
While there is no doubt John Moore has the upside factor, for this season, Hunwick could hold the fort.
How about on the defensive side? Let’s look at average time on ice first. The chart clearly shows that Hunwick has played more and has the experience advantage.
When it comes to possession (corsi) for last season, according to Extra Skater, Hunwick finished with a 55.9% for the Avs, while Moore came in at 50.4%.
I am not advocating for Hunwick over Moore. I believe John Moore has top 4 defenseman written all over him. Still, if he holds out the Rangers are safe. However, John Moore’s long-term future in NY could be in jeopardy.
Conor Allen is banging at the door down in Hartford. Dylan McIlrath could live up to his potential at any given moment. If that happens, John Moore being traded for a forward who can score at the deadline – well, that may not be so far fetched.