New York Rangers keep changing their demands for Vitali Kravtsov trade; and is Dylan Strome an option

vitali kravtsov trade
Rangers prospect Vitali Kravtsov and other Rangers prospects practice at the Rangers training facility in Greenburgh Sept. 5, 2019.

The New York Rangers just completed a 4-0-0 road trip and are hoping to get Kaapo Kakko back for Monday’s home game against the Flames. Additionally, the team has not said much about Ryan Strome who missed the entire trip due to COVID protocol.

Strome must pass two consecutive COVID tests in order to return to the lineup. Practice at MSG training center will begin today at 12 PM ET where we should learn more on both players.

Rangers once again change asking price for Vitali Kravtsov

First it was a top 9 forward, which a league source completely laughed off as unrealistic to me. That same person explained that the most likely return would be a second round pick.

According to Sportnet’s Jeff Marek it appears GM Chris Drury has lessened his demand in just a few days.

“I called around to find out what general manager Chris Drury could be looking for in a trade for this player, and what I got back was a top prospect,” he said. “He’s is not budging from that right now.”

Kravtsov, 21, will have his ELC expire this summer. The Rangers for all intents and purposes own his rights until he’s 27 years-old. I doubt this will reach that point, but Chris Drury holds all the cards here. Matter of fact, Kravtsov’s only play to force a trade was to sit out.

What should not be lost in all of this is Drury’s rigidness in such matters. He’s let many a prospect in Hartford languish after making similar trade demands. So, a quick resolution isn’t likely.

Is Dylan Strome still an option

new york rangers rumors
May 10, 2021; Chicago, Illinois, USA; Chicago Blackhawks center Dylan Strome (17) controls the puck before scoring against the Dallas Stars during the second period at United Center. Mandatory Credit: Kamil Krzaczynski-USA TODAY Sports

With Morgan Barron up with the big club, and Ryan Strome hopefully on his way back soon, the need to acquire a center will likely die down for now.

One name that the rumor mill had the Rangers investigating was Chicago Blackhawks pivot Dylan Strome, Ryan’s younger brother.

Strome, 24, was acquired by the Blackhawks from the Coyotes back in 2018. He had a promising first season in Chicago with 51 points in 58 games but his production has declined since that season. For his career, he has 122 points in 204 games.

According to The Athletic’s Erik Duhatschek he doesn’t see Strome as a fit for NY.

Dylan Strome doesn’t seem to factor in the top 12 in Chicago currently and at $3 million this year, heading into restricted free agency, I think the Blackhawks would be happy just to get out from under the contract. And while the Rangers are a little thin down the middle, especially with Ryan Strome currently out day-to-day, I don’t see a fit there. They want to see Filip Chytil take the next step. When Ryan Strome returns, Chytil will slide back into that No. 3 center slot.

The Athletic

From what I can gather, if the Rangers are buyers at the trade deadline this year, a center will be their primary target.

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