Rumors of trading Ryan Strome are a terrible idea
The Rangers are rightfully focused on preparing for their qualifying matchup against the Carolina Hurricanes. That is the here and now, but it is the responsibility of management to map out a long term plan and execute it.
This has prompted some talk about what the Rangers should do about their free agents this coming off season. Let’s focus on one free agent named Ryan Strome.
New York Rangers 2020-21 salary cap situation
- The NHL cap will remain flat at $81.5 million.
- Ryan Strome will be a restricted free agent with arbitration rights
- Rangers have to sign/promote at least 7 players to fill out a roster
- They have 4 key RFA’s in Strome, DeAngelo, Lemieux, and Georgiev
- They have 1 key UFA in Jesper Fast
- GM, Jeff Gorton only has $14 million in cap space to get the job done
Ryan Strome and his importance to the Rangers
In a recent article by Larry Brooks, he rationalizes trading Ryan Strome based on how Filip Chytil performs in these playoffs. The notion simply doesn’t compute in my mind, even if Chytil were to set the world ablaze in the post season.
If Chytil, who will skate between Phil Di Giuseppe and Kaapo Kakko when the series opens on Saturday, makes an impact in the tournament, management could have more reason to believe that No. 72 could step up and center Panarin next year. That could prompt the team to attempt to deal Strome, who recorded a career-high 59 points (18-41) in 70 games after having averaged 35 points (14-21) over his five full NHL seasons split among the Islanders, Oilers and Rangers.Larry Brooks, NY Post
Currently, the Rangers lack depth at center in their prospect pipeline. Why on Earth would you move a player like Strome who has shown he could play top minutes with your best player, Artemi Panarin? If the rationale is that Chytil is the future 2nd line center, he is only 20 and is no lock to be a top six forward yet. It just doesn’t add up, and any rumors about trading him due to the cap should not pass “Go” or collect $200. (Monopoly Reference)
Re-signing Ryan Strome a Rangers priority
Ryan Strome had 59 points in 70 games this season. He has found a home and some chemistry with the Rangers superstar forward, Artemi Panarin. This is all good
However, in 129 career games as a Blueshirt he has 92 points (36 goals and 56 assists). That’s 33 points in 59 games without the Breadman. And when it comes to his importance to this team, it is not just those stats.
As I mentioned, the Rangers don’t have a lot of NHL ready centers able to take on the responsibility of 2nd line duties. To suggest Filip Chytil just because of a productive playoff run is too much to ask. Especially in a season where David Quinn was experimenting with him on the wing.
Predicting Ryan Strome’s next deal
At the age of 26, Ryan Strome is set to become a free agent with arbitration rights, you can fully expect to see him file for salary arbitration. He is coming off a deal with a 3.1M AAV and will be looking for a fair increase.
Correction: Strome turned 27 on July 11th.
When it comes to numbers the Rangers are likely to offer a deal around $4M while Strome’s side will seek close to $6M. The two sides will likely fall on a 2 year deal at around $5M AAV and never face an arbitrator.
Of course, there is always that risk and the Rangers could face an award they would walk away from. Unlikely, but possible. Just remember, Ryan Strome was acquired for Ryan Spooner so I doubt this would turn into a Nik Zherdev situation.