Rangers Roundup: Ottawa Sun is reporting that Jeff Gorton fielding offers for Stepan, coach search and more
The Ottawa Sun’s version of Larry Brooks, Bruce Garrioch reported the following:
It sure sounds like New York Rangers GM Jeff Gorton has been busy working the phones. Lots of talk he’s listening on centre Derek Stepan, who has a contract that runs through 2020-21 season. A big test for Gorton will be getting RFA winger Chris Kreider signed because he’s a valuable asset … If anybody thought centre Eric Staal, who was dealt to the Rangers at the deadline last season, is headed back to the Carolina Hurricanes as a UFA on July 1, it sure sounds doubtful that will happen.
We already know the Rangers are looking hard at moving Rick Nash and his 7.8M AAV off the books. Now if they were to move Derek Stepan’s 6.5M AAV that would add 14.3M to the retool of the Blueshirts.
Bottom line, if they are clearing that much cap space it can only lead to one conclusion…
Spector’s Hockey notes this on the rumor:
SPECTOR’S NOTE: It’s believed the Rangers are willing to entertain offers for all but a handful of players. Still, they won’t just give guys like Stepan away. They’ll want a return with a good young roster player (who’s also affordable) as part of the deal. There’s also no guarantee they will move Stepan.
Assistant Coach Search Update
Speaking of Larry Brooks, he wrote this in his Sunday column:
We’re told AHL Hartford assistant Jeff Beukeboom remains in the mix…Brian Leetch, whose family is ensconced in Boston, has no interest in the job. [The Rangers] seem to be seeking an assistant with NHL coaching experience to run the defense. Former Wild assistant Darryl Sydor is believed among the candidates under consideration by Vigneault and GM Jeff Gorton.
Brooks makes an interesting point that if Beukeboom was a serious consideration, he would have been hired already. As far a Leetch goes, his report refutes information I received that he was interested in joining the bench.
Fugghedaboutit! Unless you are willing to trade Ryan McDonagh, as per Brooks…and I’m not.
Newsday Lists Names the Rangers Have Offered
Steve Zipay dropped this tidbit of info on Sunday:
Several names carrying significant cap hits have been floated — Rick Nash, Marc Staal, Derek Stepan, Dan Girardi and Derick Brassard — but it’s unclear on the number of takers or an appropriate return. And the Rangers currently have just five draft picks (at 81, 98, 141, 171 and 201). “They’re in a bit of a bind,” said one general manger who asked not to be identified. “It’s a challenge.”
We heard Nash and Stepan from many other insiders, however Zipay is now confirming Girardi and Staal who both have no move clauses. As far as Brassard goes, they may move him if they don’t move Stepan and the ultimate goal is to bring in Stamkos.
We will see. Happy Father’s Day.