After placing the veteran forward on waivers a little over a week ago, Chris Johnston of TSN is reporting the New York Rangers have placed Nick Bonino on unconditional waivers to terminate his contract. After signing a one-year, $800K contract with the Rangers this past summer, Bonino will once again be free to join any team with approximately 30 games left in the regular season.
Being a quick turnaround from his original waivers placement on January 26th, Larry Brooks of the New York Post is reporting that New York gave Bonino time during the All-Star break to think about his future with the organization, and he ultimately decided he was unwilling to join the Hartford Wolf Pack. Now being placed on unconditional waivers, the Rangers have chosen to honor Bonino’s desires.
As far as a potential landing spot for Bonino, he will likely be looking at a team with a significant amount of injuries to their forward core, such as the Chicago Blackhawks, San Jose Sharks, or Washington Capitals. However, even with some teams in desperate need of forward depth, it is tough to ascertain how much of an upgrade Bonino would be this season.
In 45 games for New York this year, Bonino had very little production, only scoring one goal and five points while averaging a touch over 12 minutes of ice time per night. Furthermore, per MoneyPuck, his typical linemates of Jimmy Vesey and Barclay Goodrow produced an expected goals against per 60 minutes of 3.19, which ranks the highest on the team for lines that have played more than 90 minutes together over the season.
Being unwilling to report to an AHL for the first time since the 2011-12 season, it appears that Bonino firmly believes he has more left in the tank to offer an NHL team. Without the same pedigree, players such as Corey Perry and Zach Parise have found landing spots deep into the regular season, perhaps giving Bonino some confidence that he too can find another home.