Rangers Trade Target: Jacob Trouba

Zuccarello and Trouba collide.

The Winnipeg Jets are without a 1st round pick this draft after having traded it away for Kevin Hayes at the deadline. They also have a big chip to play in defenseman, Jacob Trouba.

Could the New York Rangers who have a desperate need to improve the defense and 2 first round picks make a play? Jeff Gorton could be wheeling and dealing this summer if he wants to go after the 25 year old top pairing defenseman.

Trouba won’t come cheap as he just posted a career high 50 points this past season. The restricted free agent made $5.5M last season and will be looking for a 7-8 years at $7-8M per season on his next deal. Of course, being an RFA puts Winnipeg in the driver’s seat as they could go cheaper on a bridge deal.

But why are we even talking about Trouba? Well back in 2016 he openly said he wanted to be traded and it is possible he may still want out of Winnipeg putting them in a bad position to trade him as a rental maybe as soon as next year.

Still, if they could do a sign and trade before the draft they could move him for a monster package that will include a 1st round pick in this draft. Ken Wiebe of the Winnipeg Sun went through all the scenarios in a recent article, but let’s focus on trading Trouba alone.

According Wiebe, the Jets would love a 1st round pick and a top defenseman back. Gorton could send back Winnipeg’s pick traded for Hayes along with Kevin Shattenkirk and another player in blockbuster. Maybe Marc Staal will waive to facilitate a deal. Gorton also is now loaded on the blue line and could afford to move a player like Tony DeAngelo who raised plenty of eyebrows this year for Trouba.

The bottom line is simple, if the Jets are serious about trading Trouba, then the Rangers are a team that has the picks, players, and cap space to make a move.