Rangers Roundup: Drury called Preds about Forsberg, Gallant not blaming refs, and more

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Nov 2, 2019; Nashville, TN, USA; Nashville Predators left wing Filip Forsberg (9) and New York Rangers defenseman Libor Hajek (25) battle in front of New York Rangers goaltender Alexandar Georgiev (40) during the second period at Bridgestone Arena. Mandatory Credit: Christopher Hanewinckel-USA TODAY Sports
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The New York Rangers apparently made an inquiry regarding the availability of Nashville Predators’ pending UFA Filip Forsberg.

According to Arthur Staple of The Athletic, the call by Chris Drury took place around the same time Andy Strickland said he was being “actively shopped.”

A league source said the Rangers have inquired with Nashville on the high-scoring forward, who is a pending UFA.

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Rangers checked in on Forsberg

It’s not surprising that Chris Drury called the Predators. Most likely, it was to see what’s the asking price in order to gauge the upcoming NHL Trade Deadline. Remember, buyers at the deadline want lots of options, not limited ones in order to keep cost of acquisition down.

Yes folks, it’s Economics 101.

As far as Forsberg goes, the overall thought is the two sides should get something done and that GM David Poile is just doing his due diligence.

Here’s what two of the top insiders, Darren Dreger and Elliotte Friedman have to say on Forsberg.

Dreger: The talks with Filip Forsberg and his agent, J.P. Barry, remain in the preliminary stage which is fuelling speculation with the trade deadline now less than one month away… For Filip Forsberg, who is 27 years of age, to stay with the Predators long term, his cap hit and his expected salary is going to have to be north of $8 million.

Friedman: Forsberg knows that, if he wants to stay in Tennessee, he’s going to have to come in lower than Roman Josi’s $9.059M. I wouldn’t be surprised if Forsberg initially asked higher — you don’t negotiate against yourself — but that’s where everyone’s got to get to: the sweet spot between those two numbers. (Plus structure and no-trade protection.) There’s time. I believe there is a will for both sides to get there. If we get to the deadline and the Predators don’t believe they can sign him, that’s when a trade becomes possible.

Forsberg is in the final year of a six-year contract agreed to in 2016-17. That deal was for $6M AAV against the cap and his next one is expected to be much higher. This season, he’s scored 45 points through 40 games.

Related: Forsberg a fit, but is he a fit?

Gallant won’t blame refs for questionable call

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Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

The Rangers lost a tough one to the Penguins yesterday by a score of 1-0. Evgeni Malkin scored on the power play on what many felt was a questionable penalty.

In the third period, Ryan Lindgren was called for hooking Sidney Crosby, which led to the game-winning goal. Watching the replay with the benefit of slo-motion, one can see that Lindgren made an incredible defensive play lifting Crosby’s stick — no hook involved.

“He gets under his hands,” Gallant explained. “It’s tough, you know, there was hardly any power plays and the refs let us play. I wish it wouldn’t have been called, but it’s a tough game to call… I’m not blaming the refs, they work hard.”

Read More: Filip Chytil a healthy scratch raises trade questions.

NHL Trade Bait Tracker

Check out the latest NHL Trade Bait List as the March 21st Deadline draws near. Check it out here.

Anthony Scultore is the founder of Forever Blueshirts and has been covering the New York Rangers and the NHL... More about Anthony Scultore

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