Nick Kypreos said on Hockey Night in Canada that the expectation around the NHL is that Artemi Panarin will become a free agent on July 1 and that “the Rangers remain the odds on favorite to land him next season.
TSN’s Pierre LeBrun was on the radio on Friday and said that the Rangers would be a “prime” landing spot for Panarin.
LeBrun said that he thinks Panarin could get a cap hit of between $10M to $11M with his next contract. (Nichols)
Panarin’s agent noted that he will meet with his client during the All-Star break to map out a plan for the rest of the season. (Nichols)
Back in August, Aaron Portzline wrote that the belief around the NHL was that the Rangers were Panarin’s top choice. (The Athletic)
Portzline added that it doesn’t mean for sure that Panarin will end up with the Rangers at some point but that three different people, from three different teams, all mentioned that they have heard the Rangers are at the top of his list. (The Athletic)
Adam Rotter: The team believed to be the biggest competition for the Rangers is the Blackhawks. Obviously Panarin has a history with Chicago and I don’t think a return there can be discounted as they go through their own transition. Something in the ballpark of 7-years and $77 million would likely bring the Rangers a gamebreaker and difference maker that could help them get back toward the playoffs in the short-term and contending for a Stanley Cup down the line. There is risk in allocating that much money and term to a free agent, but Panarin checks all of the boxes of a player you want to add. He’s been one of the best scorers in the league since coming to the NHL, he competes, teammates love him, his coaches love him and he would fit right in with where the Rangers are going. It’s possible that when the Rangers return to contention 3 of their 4 top-six wingers, Panarin, Pavel Buchnevich, Vitali Kravtsov, will be Russian and that the fourth, Chris Kreider, speaks Russian.