Rangers should look elsewhere than recently bought out defenseman Ryan Suter

ryan suter
May 18, 2021; Las Vegas, Nevada, USA; Minnesota Wild defenseman Ryan Suter (20) hits Vegas Golden Knights center Jonathan Marchessault (81) during the first period of game two of the first round of the 2021 Stanley Cup Playoffs at T-Mobile Arena. Mandatory Credit: Stephen R. Sylvanie-USA TODAY Sports

The Minnesota Wild, desperate to protect players from the Seattle Kraken and looking for cap space made two big moves today. Bill Guerin announced the buyouts of Zach Parise and Ryan Suter, both had no move clauses. That meant the Wild had to protect them and expose a player like Matt Dumba to Seattle.

What’s next for the Wild

Now that the Wild have given themselves the ability to protect younger key players, they also have $26 million in cap space per CapFriendly. What should they do next?

Make a run at Jack Eichel you say?

Sure, they could add Eichel’s $10 million hit next season, but what do you do for the next two seasons after that? Minnesota will have $12 million and $14 million in dead cap space respectively due to these buyouts.

Guerin will wisely use the bulk of his space on inking both Kirill Kaprizov and Kevin Fiala to longterm deals. He could also make a run a Seth Jones or Vladimir Tarasenko if he’d like. Bottom line is this, they still need to sign three more forwards and two defenseman for next year.

That cap space is going to be gone quick, plus they need to make sure they leave some wiggle room for the next two seasons.

Is Ryan Suter a fit for the Rangers?

rangers rumors
May 13, 2021; St. Louis, Missouri, USA; Minnesota Wild defenseman Ryan Suter (20) shoots during the first period against the St. Louis Blues at Enterprise Center. Mandatory Credit: Jeff Curry-USA TODAY Sports

Ryan Suter is 36 years-old and a left handed shot. His analytics are decent for a player his age. Diving a little deeper, he’s a great character guy and would be a nice third pair defender. Sounds like a good fit based on reports the Blueshirts want to add a veteran defender.

However, if you look at the landscape for UFA defensemen that are available there’s better options. A lot will depend on what exactly are both Chris Drury and Gerard Gallant looking for.

Do they want someone to play top four and give K’Andre Miller a lesser workload in his second season? Or are they just looking for a reliable third pair guy? My best guess is they want someone who could be top four if Miller struggles, as he did late last season, and at the same time be okay with playing third line minutes if that’s what’s called upon.

Suter once again sounds like he fits that bill, but there’s also no guarantee that he will take a Jack Johnson like deal. I’m sure there is a contender that views Suter as someone they can give two years at around $2+ million per season to.

If Zdeno Chara wants to play next season, I’d look his way on a one year deal under a million first.

Other better and younger fits

Here’s a few LD that are available and possibly better fits for the Rangers:

  • Jordie Benn
  • Patrik Nemeth
  • Jarred Tinordi

All are big physical defensemen that can take the body and play third pair or higher if called upon. It’s going to be an interesting summer for the Rangers but I believe it won’t include Ryan Suter.

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