As the NHL loks to expand the league to more teams, it looks as though Quebec and Las Vegas will be getting the first 2 expansion teams. Both of the Quebec and Las Vegas arenas are said to be on target to be opened for business by next season, but it is reported that the projection for the newest teams to start playing will be for the 2016-2017 season. The last time that there was expansion in 2000 for the Columbus Blue Jackets and Minnesota Wild, the teams already playing in the NHL had two options of protecting some of their players exempt from getting taken away by the upstart teams. The first, which will be most likely what the Rangers will choose, you are allowed to protect 1 goalie, 5 defensemen (at least 1 defenseman with over 40 games played in 2015-2016 has to be exposed) , and 9 forwards (at least 2 forwards with 40 games played in the 2015-2016 season has to be exposed). The other option was 2 goalies, 3 defensemen, and 7 forwards. Each team could lose two players in the expansion. It will be up to new General Manager Jeff Gorton to choose the correct scenario for the Rangers in which option to choose and which players to expose in the draft. Some teams leave some bigname-big contract players out there but not many have ever been taken in these expansion drafts as teams are looking for young players with promise that can grow into a solid team. If the expansion teams are ready to go for next season, it would be off of this years roster as the exoansion draft was before July 1st and free agency back in 2000.
It would seem like the Rangers would pick the 1 goalie option if the draft is for the 2016-2017 season as Brandon Halverson will still not be exposed as he won't be signed yet after playing in Jr's again this season. It would expose all the other Rangers goalies in Mackenzie Skapski, Antii Raanta, and Magnus Hellberg as the most sought after in the Rangers system. Of the 5 defensemen, it would seem like Ryan McDonagh, Marc Staal, Keith Yandle, Kevin Klein, and Brady Skjei would be the best bet while exposing defensive key Dan Girardi and his $5.5 million cap hit for another 4 years hoping it would be enough of a deterent for a new team to go after younger and cheaper options. For the 9 forwards, Rick Nash, Derek Stepan, Chris Kreider, Kevin Hayes, Mats Zuccarello, Derrick Brassard, J.T. Miller, and Jesper Fast along most likely Pavel Buchnevich as the core. The Rangers will have to let some players like Dominic Moore, Oscar Lindberg, Emerson Etem, Jarrett Stoll, and Tanner Glass plus the AHL guys to get plucked by the expansion teams. It would seem that the Rangers will probably lose one of the goalies and a forward to expansion if it was to happen this coming June 26th like it did in 2000.
Posted by Michael M. Ramos ≡ 12:54:43 PM - August 17, 2015
In Jeff Gorton's first summer as Rangers general manager he has made some pretty good cap friendly deals for the lower 6 forwards and depth while extending Derek Stepan at a reasonable price. In the Cap World, there will always be players and teams that have to adjust because the raise they are due makes them unable to stay with the team and this summer it happened to be Carl Hagelin. Hag's was a very useful Ranger and played a solid role in the Rangers success over the last few years, but the raise he wanted (he signed with the Ducks for $16 million over 4 years) that took him out of the Rangers plans and got him sent to Anaheim in exchange for Emerson Etem (at a very cap friendly amount of under $1 million for this upcoming season). The Rangers also sent a 6th rounder and their 2nd for the Ducks 2nd that moved the Rangers up 18 spots in that round and they were lucky enough to grab LW Ryan Gropp. Emerson Etem has history with a couple of the Rangers young core American members and he was in need of an organizational change of systems which he seems to fit in perfect to the way the Rangers play. The Rangers saw over the last few years that they needed to get bigger at forward and they did that this summer without losing too much speed more
Posted by Michael M. Ramos ≡ 12:42:54 PM - July 13, 2015
Anyone who follows the Rangers knows how good this team has been for the past few years. They have won divisions, been to 3 of the last 4 conference finals, and a Stanley Cup Final just last year, but they haven't had that extra something to bring the Cup back to New York. The Rangers have been successful while having a somewhat revolving door around their core players of Henrik Lundqvist, Marc Staal, Dan Girardi, Ryan McDonagh, Mats Zuccarello, Carl Hagelin, and Cam Talbot. The Rangers had already traded ex-captain Ryan Callahan, Brandon Dubinsky, Artem Anisimov, and a few other homegrown Rangers to get bigname players to add while working within the cap system. This Summer the Rangers already traded Cam Talbot who deserved to be a starter somewhere for picks, and Carl Hagelin for Emerson Etem to save somewhere near $2 and 1/2 million this year. The cap makes you pick and choose who you can keep longterm and who is just for a year or two more
Posted by Michael M. Ramos ≡ 12:49:00 PM - June 25, 2015
With the 2015 draft a day away and today being the start of the "open talks" with free agents throughout the NHL, the rumors are flying everywhere. You can go on sites like TSN, The Hockey News, Hockeybuzz, etc. and see all the wild and sometimes not so crazy rumors out there. A big part of some of the rumors is common sense figuring out and some are liget like Dreger, McKenzie, etc.... The first common sense trade will be Cameron Talbot for a 1st round draft pick or a 2nd+ prospect since Dreger and Larry Brooks have reported the Rangers have already turned down a proposed trade for "multiple 2nd rounders". Once the Talbot trade happens, I would guess then the rest of the goalies and position players will be moved and the real fun starts for the draft where there is usually a few big deals that go down on draft day more
Posted by Michael M. Ramos ≡ 11:27:02 AM - June 22, 2015
The Rangers have had a pretty good last 4 years with reaching the Eastern Conference Finals in 3 of those years. Last year semed like "the year" with them winning the Presidents Trophy for the best regular season record, but wound up to banged up to reach the finals. Now, as the Rangers heal up from another long run in the playoffs without bringing home the Stanley Cup to New York, there are many decisions to be made. The Biggest one was answered last week when Glen Sather said that the organizational bigwigs were staying in place until July 1st meaning that he would stay on as General Manager until after the draft. With the draft coming up this weekend and the "open discusion" time with free agents opening but can't officially sign until July 1st, it would seem that everyone will be on the same page when Sather hands over the General Manager duties to Jeff Gorton more
Posted by Michael M. Ramos ≡ 1:44:57 PM - May 30, 2015
The Rangers worked hard all season and it seems as though the Presidents Trophy curse is still alive this season. Playoffs are a time where every team is banged up, The Rangers looked at times as though they were lifeless. It turns out that some of the players had no energy to tap into as after the game the coach admitted that Rangers Captain Ryan McDonagh was playing on a broken foot and Kevin Weekes tweeted that Marc Staal was playing on a broken ankle. Everyone knew that Mats Zuccarello missed many games because of his concussion. Even with Henrik Lundqvist playing his best hockey, the Rangers would have been an easy out the next series without those three key players. It will be interesting in the next few days in the players exit physicals to see who else needs some sort of medical treatment due to injuries. It would seem that Rick Nash, Martin St. Louis, Dan Girardi, and Dan Boyle were all playing with some sort of issues more