Mats Zuccarello Trade Rumblings?
Here we go again! Let me be honest here, as an owner/creator of hockey site this is my favorite time of year. However, as a fan this is also a maddening time of year as things seem to be in a constant state of flux with the upcoming NHL trade deadline less than a week away (March 2nd, 3PM).
Elliotte Friedman of Sportsnet posted this on his 30 Thoughts today:
[su_quote cite=”Elliotte Friedman” url=”http://www.sportsnet.ca/hockey/nhl/30-thoughts-flames-face-deadline-crossroads/”] I’m a Mats Zuccarello guy. Big fan of his game, and that did not change watching him lead everyone with five shots in Tuesday’s win. He and the Rangers are not close on a new deal and he can walk this summer. The simple move for New York is to keep him, make a playoff run and take their chances later. But, there are rumours they will consider trading him, see what they can get and, if necessary, flip that for something else. I can’t prove or disprove those rumblings, but they’re out there.[/su_quote]
Now, should we be shocked that the Rangers would “entertain” the right offer for Zuccarello? Of course not! Just like AV said recently, “if we can help ourselves, in any area where we might be able to improve our team we’re gonna look at it.”
If the Rangers feel that they can replace Zuccarello’s offense adequately on the wing and improve an area they deem weak, they will. That’s the kicker though, can they replace what Mats Zuccarello brings? Much easier said than done.
Reports came out last month from Katie Strang that the Rangers weren’t going to move Zuccarello, followed by Larry Brooks reporting the same. In that same piece however, Brooks mentions that the gap between the two sides is over $1 million and it doesn’t appear that issue will be resolved by the deadline.
So, what to make of it? Nothing, plain and simple. The likelihood a Zuccarello trade happens seems very slim, and if it does it will likely be a large scale deal. NY doesn’t appear to be involved in any blockbuster type conversations that we know of and can address their face-off issue in a minor deal.