Report: New York Rangers trade deadline will likely involve multiple deals
The New York Rangers will definitely be involved in the trade market this season as buyers. They may also be closer to making a trade than the other contenders as well.
GM Chris Drury has plenty of cap space and doesn’t need to wait closer to the deadline or get help from a third party to lower the cap hit.
It’s no secret that the Rangers are going to be active, and with the ability to add around $32 million in salary come the trade deadline, Drury will likely go on a trade spree.
Top Insider says Rangers will take “Big Swing”
On the latest 32 Thoughts Podcast, Elliotte Friedman discussed the Rangers and how they will approach the deadline.
“When I look at (the Rangers) they can win playoffs series because of (Igor) Shesterkin,” Friedman said. “They obviously got left a lot of talent by the Jeff Gorton regime. Chris Drury has made his tweaks and I think he’s going to take a big swing at the deadline this year.”
There really wasn’t much more than that regarding what that “big swing” could be.
The natural assumption is Vancouver Canucks forward J.T. Miller, but as I’ve discussed before, the cost to acquire him is not reasonable. Vancouver has set the price high purposefully because they don’t want to trade their leading scorer with the playoffs within reach. If someone is crazy enough to give them a top young player, top prospect, a first round draft pick, and maybe more then they’d be crazy not to accept.
So who else is there that fits what the Rangers need and considered a “big swing”?
Claude Giroux would be great, but the Flyers are not trading their captain to New York to help them win a Cup. What about Tomas Hertl? If he’s available at the deadline it’s possible, although signs are pointing to him staying in San Jose. And about those Filip Forsberg rumors, they were hogwash from the moment they came out.
From what I can gather, the “big swing” the Rangers are going to take by March 21st is going to be trade attempts for three to four players.
New York Rangers top trade targets
Forever Blueshirts has learned that the Rangers are aggressively targeting pending UFAs, Rickard Rakell of the Anaheim Ducks and Ben Chiarot of the Montreal Canadiens. Those are the two big guys they want to add as rentals for the playoffs. A top six forward and a physical left defenseman that can chip in offensively.
Two other pending UFA forwards they are looking at are Arizona Coyotes veteran Phil Kessel and Columbus Blue Jackets forward Max Domi. Kessel could be plan B if they can’t land Rakell. Chris Drury certainly wants to beef up his bottom six, and in essence revamp the third line. That’s why Domi is on his radar.
I can also confirm that Gerard Gallant has lobbied for Reilly Smith, who played for the coach in Vegas. However with Mark Stone on LTIR the Golden Knights are able to keep him.
Drury will also look at adding depth forwards like Calle Jarnkrok from the Seattle Kraken. Another option could be Vegas’ Mattias Janmark, once he comes off IR.
One thing that likely won’t be in the cards is going after pending RFA’s like Artturi Lehkonen in Montreal or Victor Olofsson in Buffalo.
“One of the guys I know they were interested in was Olofsson,” Friedman said. “They didn’t do it and the major reason was they couldn’t handle his (contract) situation next season.”
The Rangers will be very tight on cap space once Mika Zibanejad’s ($8.5M) and Adam Fox’s ($9.5M) extensions kick in next season.
Get the latest buzz on the Rangers wish list, what Phil Kessel is worth and a potential Maple Leafs – Canucks blockbuster trade. Read more.