Rangers Free Agent Signings: Blake Wheeler, Jonathan Quick, and more

NHL: New York Rangers at Winnipeg Jets
Terrence Lee-USA TODAY Sports

The New York Rangers surprised a few people with the signing of recently bought out right wing Blake Wheeler.

According to Sportsnet’s Elliotte Friedman, the deal is for one-year with a base AAV of $800,000 and performance bonuses that would total it up to $1.2 million.

Rangers sign Blake Wheeler

Blake Wheeler will be 37 next month, and after seeing little playoff success with the Winnipeg Jets, he was obviously willing to take a one-year deal with a low base salary for a chance to win a Stanley Cup.

TSN’s Darren Dreger first reported the interest prior to the opening bell of free agency.

Last season, he registered 16 goals and 39 assists for 55 points in 72 games including 7 power play goals. For his career, he’s amassed 312 goals and 610 assists for 922 points in 1,118 matches.

A former teammate of current Rangers captain Jacob Trouba, that likely factored in the decision as well.

The Rangers not only add a proven veteran, but one with the physical size (6-5′, 220 lbs) and will to get into the dirty areas to score.

Jonathan Quick signs with Rangers

NHL: Vegas Golden Knights at Dallas Stars
Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports

The Rangers also made the long reported signing of goalie Jonathan Quick official.

According to TSN’s Pierre Lebrun and Sportsnet’s Elliotte Friedman, it is one-year deal with an $825,000 AAV plus performance bonus.

Quick, 37, has a career mark of 375-277-84 with a GAA of 2.47 and .911 save percentage. He also knows a thing or two about winning as he backstopped two Stanley Cup runs with the Los Angeles Kings in 2012 and 2014. This should be helpful for Igor Shesterkin, who looks like he’s on the verge of winning one in the near future.

The clutch goalie hails from Connecticut and grew up idolizing 1994 Rangers Stanley Cup winner Mike Richter.

UPDATES:

Rangers sign forward Tyler Pitlick

Pitlick, 31, recorded 7 goals and 9 assists for 16 points in 61 games last season with the St. Louis Blues. The big forward is an excellent candidate for the fourth-line thanks to his penchant for hitting. He had 103 hits for the Blues in 2022-23.

The reported AAV is $787,500.

Rangers sign forward Riley Nash

Nash, 34, signed a two-year deal with the Blueshirts per the team. The 6-2′, 188 lbs forward has not played in the NHL since 2021-22. He spent last season with the Charlotte Checkers of the AHL and is most likely headed to the Hartford Wolf Pack.

According to TSN, the first year of the deal is a one-way contract and year two is a two-way. The AAV is $775K.

Rangers sign forward Alex Belize

Belzile, 31, notched 6 goals and 8 assists for 14 points in 31 games for the Montreal Canadiens last season. This is a two-year deal (second year is a two-way) with an AAV of $750K.

Rangers sign defenseman Connor Mackey

Mackey, 26, registered 3 goals and 4 assists in 30 games split between the Calgary Flames and Arizona Coyotes last season. The 6-2 and 197 lbs blue-liner inked for one-year.

Rangers sign defenseman Nikolas Brouillard

Brouillard, 28, played in the AHL last year notching 6 goals and 33 assists in 72 games for the San Diego Gulls. It’s a one-year deal.

Rangers sign Nick Bonino

Bonino, 35, posted 10 goals and 9 assists for 19 points in 62 games split between the San Jose Sharks and Pittsburgh Penguins. A two-time Stanley Cup winner with the Pens in 2016 and 2017, he bolsters the team’s fourth line and center position.

 Per the Rangers, this is a one-year deal for $800K.

Rangers sign Erik Gustafsson

Gustafsson, 31, recorded 7 goals and 35 assists for 42 points in 70 matches split between the Toronto Maple Leafs and Washington Capitals last season. The 6-0′ and 190 pound lefty defenseman signed for one-year with an $825K AAV.

UPDATES 7/2/2023:

Rangers sign Mac Hollowell

Hollowell, 24, played in 6 games for the Toronto Maple Leafs in 2022-23 registering 2 assists. The 5-9′ and 170 lbs defenseman is expected to compete for a roster spot on the Hartford Wolf Pack. It’s a one-year deal with a $775K AAV.

Note: Some contract information via CapFriendly

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