Rangers look set to trade their most physical defenseman, McIlrath. This is why it’s stupid.

McIlrath (Getty)

McIlrath (Getty)

Larry Brooks wrote yesterday that the Rangers are trying to trade 24 year old defenseman, Dylan McIlrath.

The Blueshirts are believed to be seeking a trade partner for McIlrath, the 24-year-old who had a disappointing camp coming off an encouraging 2015-16, but in which — probably to both the team’s and No. 6’s own detriment — he played only 34 games as Vigneault stuck through thin-and-thinner with veterans Dan Girardi and Dan Boyle.

Has He Been Given A Fair Chance?

If the Rangers do indeed trade Dylan McIlrath, his line for them would read:

37 GP – 2 G – 2 A – 4 PTS – +6 – 80 PIM – TOI: 13:35

He also has 1 playoff game where he finished with a +1 in just 9:07 of ice. To those who like advanced stats, his numbers there are solid with a career 51.5 CF%. These are real good numbers for a third pairing defenseman with most of his starts in the defensive zone at 52.2%.

So to be blunt: NO! The Rangers haven’t given him a fair chance.

What They Will Be Giving Up On
McIlrath (Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)

McIlrath (Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)

Apparently in favor of one-dimensional, Adam Clendening, the Rangers are willing to trade away their 1st round pick from 2010 (10th overall). They are willing to say goodbye to a coveted RH shooting defenseman, who is 6’5″ and weighs 220 pounds. He also has a booming shot from the point.

The Rangers are also apparently willing to forego anyone with the ability to defend his teammates. Jimmy Vesey has already been crushed by one goon in the Flyers, Gudas and apparently Rangers brass just doesn’t care. I mean, they’ve already sent down Tanner Glass so they must not be concerned with defending a player’s well being.

While fighting becomes less and less important in today’s game, it still exists and is used for the purposes of intimidation and/or deterrence. Fisticuffs aside, McIlrath may be THE ONLY defensemen on the roster with the willingness and ability to clear the crease. Now while he may lack the foot speed and quick transition of the other Rangers blue-liners, he is their toughest d-man to play against in front.

Sorry, but that’s something AV and Gorton should be coveting, not ignoring.

Why Are They Considering This?

To me it is obvious, Rangers brass believes the only way to win is to have every single player be fast and quick on transition. I guess that’s how the Penguins won the Cup right? Every player was able to fly up and down the ice. Oh wait, they won with slow footed blue liner, Ben Lovejoy on the roster – so scratch that.

Actually, the Rangers may send down Brady Skjei because he does not need to clear waivers to go to Hartford. Unlike, Adam Clendening and McIlrath who will need to be exposed. Here’s a helpful hint for the Rangers, no one will claim Clendening so send him down instead.

So to sum it up, the reasons the Rangers would trade McIlrath is because:

  1. They only want quick, puck moving blue liners (ignoring Girardi and Staal)
  2. Would like to keep one dimensional Adam Clendening on the roster
  3. Don’t want to expose McIlrath to waivers where they will absolutely lose him for nothing
What Will The Rangers Get in a Trade?
McIlrath (Adam Hunger – USA TODAY Sports)

McIlrath (Adam Hunger – USA TODAY Sports)

I am hearing from my sources a bucket of frozen pucks and a used equipment bag.

Jokes aside, what do you think they will get this early in the season with almost every lineup set. It’s not like McIlrath has been given a fair chance, so he is still a relatively unknown commodity.

If you were paying attention, the Edmonton Oilers got next to nothing for Nail Yakupov so what will Dylan fetch? The answer is not much. If you are willing to trade your former 1st round pick for a 3rd or 4th rounder, then go ahead.

To me, there is absolutely no reason to trade him in favor of NHL journeyman, Adam Clendening.


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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