NYR sign RFA J.T. Miller to a 2 year bridge deal, mistake or good move?

Miller celebrates his first of two vs Carolina (Photo by Gregg Forwerck/NHLI via Getty Images)

Miller celebrates his first of two vs Carolina (Photo by Gregg Forwerck/NHLI via Getty Images)

The Rangers have signed 23 year old forward, J.T. Miller to a 2 year deal with an AAV of 2.65M. The total value of the deal is for 5.25M and Miller will be an RFA when it is over, but will be eligible to be a UFA the following season (so in essence, he’ll command big money next contract).

The Rangers have around 9.475M to lock up Kreider, McIlrath and Hayes.

To me, this a missed opportunity by the NYR to identify a young main-stay top 6 forward and lock him up for several years at a good price. Now, the Rangers run the risk of having to overpay Miller should he realize his potential and continue to produce as I expect.

Currently the Florida Panthers are locking up all their young talents to long term deals that will be absolute bargains when Miller’s expires. Should he start scoring 30 goals and 60 points we may be unable to keep him without shedding salary elsewhere. At the rate of NHL salary inflation, Miller’s next contract could be in the 6M range if he continues to improve offensively.

Should the Rangers have offered Miller 3.5 – 4M for 4-5 years to lock up Miller? Much like the Panthers did with Nick Bjugstad (4.1M t0 2021), Alexsander Barkov (5.9M to 2022) and Aaron Ekblad (7.5M to 2025). To me this is another shortsighted mistake in what is becoming a long list for Sather/Gorton recently.

What do you think? Sound off in the comments section.

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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