The New York Rangers lost last night to the Toronto Maple Leafs, mustering up just one goal against the red-hot Jack Campbell. That lack of offensive output probably only strengthened general manager Chris Drury’s belief that his team needs an extra forward, something that was reported before the game by TSN’s Darren Dreger. The Rangers are after a “middle-six” forward, following the season-ending injury to Sammy Blais.
Today, Arthur Staple of The Athletic examines eight potential targets for the Rangers, including Calle Jarnkrok of the Seattle Kraken and Phil Kessel of the Arizona Coyotes. Those are obviously very different types of players, but Staple examines several others that should fall somewhere in the middle. Interestingly, the scribe also notes that a veteran defenseman is also on the Rangers’ shopping list.
In last night’s PHR Live Chat, the idea of another depth forward being the Rangers most pressing need was also touched upon. The team has been good through the early part of the season but has notably been outscored at even-strength. Their powerplay, helmed by top talents like Artemi Panarin, Chris Kreider and Mike Zibanejad, has been dynamic, carrying them through several games with plenty of production. It’s past those few of skaters that things start to get a bit less rosy, as young talents like Alexis Lafreniere, Kaapo Kakko and Filip Chytil have offered very little offense. Those three, in particular, have combined for just eight goals and 12 points, not quite what many expected heading into the season.
So another forward is on the mind of Drury, and he has plenty of ways to acquire one. The Rangers have extra second and fourth-round picks this year, plus more than $9MM in cap space. On an expiring deal, they could take on an expensive forward like Kessel or even someone that comes with a bit higher price in terms of future assets. The team is in a good place for buying, though they will have to consider the term when acquiring a new forward. Adding money to next year’s cap, when Zibanejad and Adam Fox both have huge extensions kicking in, would likely be a mistake at this point unless they are adding a key contributor.
Kravtsov oh wait
Of course, they could have just kept Pavel Buchnevich.
No they couldn’t keep buchnevich. Keeping buch would have meant getting rid of strome. They had very little cap room after this season with all the extensions they have to sign. and they had to get assets for one to try to extend the other. Center depth being the biggest weakness for the rangers
Uh, yes they could’ve. They have the room this year, not to mention that Strome can walk after this year anyway. It was just a bad Drury move, compounded by not adding Kravstov to the team. They had 3 RWs (Buch, Kakko, Kravstov), and now lean on Kakko, who is still getting acclimated.
How many more years is Kakko gonna take to get “acclimated” before he’s called a bust?
You serious? He was 18 years old when he played his first season and 20 now. Give the kid some time, just like many of the others. They were the youngest team in the NHL last year by a full year.
dave frost nhlpa
Tell that ruskie Kravtsov “here’s your chance big mouth” and give him until the deadline.
Canucks can send them Boeser (or JT MIller) for Nils Lundkvist
Maybe Kravtsov and Hajek to the Coyotes for Kessel (ARZ retains 50% salary), a pick and Lyubushkin?
I hope they don’t pursue Kessel. He’s never faired well with teammates in the locker room.
+34 years old. Can still shoot but definitely on downside of career.
Why wouldn’t they give laffy a real shot? Should he be better? Of course. But he’s basically been relegated to the thrift line playing 10+ min a game. He needs to have a chance (and some type of extended chance) on a scoring line.
Perhaps they reacquire Blackwell from the Kraken as was immediately rumored after they took him in the ED?
Riley Smith would be the coach’s pick… Or I would like to gabe vilardi there…but probably not..