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Keeping up with the Metropolitans: Rangers Off-Season Edition

Full breakdown of the Rangers moves this off-season. Complete with links from Blueshirt Banter and other NHL sources.

2017 NHL Draft - Round One Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images

New York Rangers

48-28-6, 102 pts / 253GF(4th)/216GA(t-12th)

Cap room(Per CapFriendly as of 8/10/17): $3.0 million - 21/23 NHL contracts

Brought in/back:

Moved on:

  • Derek Stepan - Trade w/ ARI
  • Antti Raanta - Trade w/ ARI
  • Dan Girardi - TBL, 2 yr / $6 mil
  • Oskar Lindberg - Expansion Draft
  • Kevin Klein - Signed w/ ZRC in Switzerland
  • Adam Clendening - ARI, 1 yr / $650k

Projected Line-up:


Chris Kreider - Mika Zibanejad - Mats Zuccarello

Jimmy Vesey - J.T. Miller - Rick Nash

Pavel Buchnevich - Kevin Hayes - Michael Grabner

Matt Puempel - David Desharnais - Jesper Fast

(Cristoval Nieves - Lias Andersson - Tanner Glass)


Ryan McDonagh - Kevin Shattenkirk

Brady Skjei - Brendan Smith

Marc Staal - Nick Holden

(Alexei Bereglazov - Anthony Deangelo - Neal Pionk)


Henrik Lundqvist

Ondrej Pavelec

Dark Horse:

The Rangers have three players that could earn a spot in camp with a great showing. First is the first round pick that the Rangers received in the Stepan trade in June’s draft, Lias Andersson. He’s a center and while the Rangers aren’t the worst at the center position, they desperately need another playmaker now that Stepan has been traded to the Coyotes. He’s more well rounded and not necessarily a playmaker, but he’s most likely either making the team, or is going back to play for Frolunda in Sweden. Blueshirt Banter just named him the #1 prospect in the NYR’s system.

The other two players that could make their way into the NHL are defenseman Alexei Bereglazov and Neal Pionk. Both are free agent additions for the Rangers last spring, and could be fighting for a roster spot as there aren’t too many in their way considering Pionk and Bereglazov are both going to be 22 and 23 years old, respectively. Pionk is coming out of the NCAA and Bereglazov was brought in after spending time in the KHL. Get used to their names, because they could become regulars by the end of this season.

Too Early Expectations:

The Rangers landed the biggest name in Free Agency with Shattenkirk, and the loss of Dan Girardi is addition by subtraction. That’s a tremendous upgrade for the Rangers, and Brady Skjei and Nick Holden are also taking the Rangers in the right direction on defense. They are now much faster and offensively talented on the blueline, with more help on the way.

However, the loss of Derek Stepan is a big hole to fill for the forward group. There’s plenty of mixing and matching that will be done, and the Rangers have the talent but finding the right chemistry is going to be important as always. The Rangers are going to need one of their forwards to take the next step and be the #1 guy on offense. They just drafted some promising forwards and it will be interesting to see whether GM Jeff Gorton is patient in letting the team grow, or if he’s going to take a more aggressive approach.

As always, the success of this team starts with the man between the pipes. He had a very pedestrian year for the man they call “King Hank.” His save percentage and GAA were by far the worst of his career. He’ll be turning 36 in March, so a decline is inevitable, but has it already started or will he rebound this year? Martin Brodeur won the Vezina at age 34 and 35, and then Tim Thomas won it at age 34 and 36. That all took place in a 5 year span and then Lundqvist won his Vezina after that in 2012. Lundqvist battled some injuries last year, and isn’t getting any younger. He will have a major impact on the success of this team.

The team traded their current #1 center for future potential, so there should be an adjustment period as the forwards sort themselves out, but the Rangers finally landed themselves a #1 defenseman in Shattenkirk. They are moving towards a youth movement, but still have a line-up that is filled with a lot of homegrown talent, so the Rangers look to be as good as last year if not better this year. I’d be more surprised if they didn’t make the playoffs, but stranger things have happened.


How many wins will the Rangers finish with?

This poll is closed

  • 1%
    34 or less
    (4 votes)
  • 8%
    (28 votes)
  • 27%
    40-42 (W.C.)
    (89 votes)
  • 36%
    (117 votes)
  • 25%
    48+ (Last years total)
    (81 votes)
319 votes total Vote Now

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