If Minnesota opts to buyout Thomas Vanek, the Rangers should pursue

Vanek (26) celebrates (Credit: Brace Hemmelgarn-USA TODAY Sports)

Vanek (26) celebrates (Credit: Brace Hemmelgarn-USA TODAY Sports)

The Minnesota Wild are looking at changing their team up this off season and that may include buying out 32 year old forward, Thomas Vanek. According to The Fourth Period, that could be a real possibility.

It is only a matter of time before changes come to the Wild locker room and one name continues to surface as one that may have to look for a new club before September. Forward Thomas Vanek may be bought out by the Wild this off-season after two seasons with the organization. The 32-year-old has one-year and $7.5 million left on his current contract with Minnesota.

A buyout would get back 5M in cap space for the Wild and make Vanek a free agent. His 93 points over the last 2 seasons could be a decent replacement if the Rangers opt to move Rick Nash or are unable to reach terms with Chris Kreider and are forced to trade him.

Vanek’s best days are behind him somewhere in Buffalo. He is a serviceable 2nd line winger with incredible skill on the PP. He has scored 11 PP goals over his last 2 seasons in Minnesota and has 124 man-advantage tallies for his career.

Vanek PP points compared to Nash and Kreider

Vanek PP points compared to Nash and Kreider

Of course, this is under the assumption he wants to play for the Rangers and sign a 1 or 2 year deal for around 2M per, give or take a few 100K. I am in no way suggesting that the Rangers get into a bidding war for the services of Vanek. He has been in a steep decline for years.

Still, it would be nice to see Vanek’s big body in front on the PP and watch his deft hands tip shots from the point. Bottom line, I’m looking at Vanek to supply that much needed RH shot and big body presence on the man advantage. That has value for this Rangers team, just needs to be for the right price.

Conclusion: If Vanek is bought out, the Rangers should at least kick the tires.

Anthony Scultore has been covering the New York Rangers and the NHL since 2014. His work also appears at... More about Anthony Scultore

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