Rangers “interested” In Possible Centerpiece Nick Bonino!
It’s been reported that the New York Rangers seem to be very interested in signing Connecticut native Nick Bonino. He will be a free agent for the first time since signing with the Ducks in 2013. Since his last contract of $5.7 million over 3 years, he has built quite a resume for himself. Mainly, the playoff runs with the back to back Stanley Cup Champion Pittsburgh Penguins.
Dreger: "I know the #NYR have interest in either Thornton or Marleau. They have interest in Nick Bonino."
— Chris Nichols (@NicholsOnHockey) June 28, 2017
Now, Bonino may not have been the best player on this team. During the regular season, he posted a less than stellar 66 points over 143 games with the Penguins. That’s not the reason teams are interested in Bonino, it’s his playoff performances that leave coaches and GMs licking their lips for this guy. He has 40 points in 75 career playoff games, most notably the 18 points in 24 games in the 2015-16 playoffs. This is impressive, because he didn’t come as a huge cost for the team, as well as being a depth 3rd line center contributing those numbers.
And with the loss of Derek Stepan, he is a player Jeff Gorton will need to go after. I have to imagine the 29-year-old depth center could fetch somewhere around $3-4 million range, given what he brings to a team when it matters most, the playoffs. This is something that if I’m Gorton, I would try to shoot for around $2.5-3.5 million per year, pending contract length. Also, have to imagine Bonino will be looking for a place to call home since playing for his third different team over the last four years. I’d say his agent is looking for maybe a 3-5 year deal. If we can get the 5 yr deal, I’m sure we could get the price down to the $2.5-$2.75 million area. If it’s short term, I have to think it’s three years at $3-4 million.
Many teams in the market for a center have connected with Nick Bonino. At least 10 teams are said to have serious interest at this stage.
— Darren Dreger (@DarrenDreger) June 29, 2017
Overall, with the lack of depth at center, and some loss of leadership and veteran playoff experience, Nick Bonino, who has only missed the playoffs once in his six and half seasons, could be a great fit on this roster.