7/10 | EJ Hradek said on the NHL Network on Tuesday evening, “I talked to Jeff Gorton yesterday and he said that it’s a process and they are working on it. There is arbitration that they can go through and get a deal done for a year and then get back at it on a longer term deal but Trouba wants to be there, the Rangers went out and got him. I think this is a long term deal that can get done.”
7/9 | The NHLPA has announced that Trouba’s arbitration hearing is set for 7/25 and that Buchnevich’s hearing is set for 7/29.
7/8 | The Rangers enter this week with just over $8 million in cap space and Jacob Trouba, Tony DeAngelo, Pavel Buchnevich, Brendan Lemieux and Vinni Lettieri still needing to be signed.
Reports indicate that the Rangers are moving closer on a contract with Trouba, likely to be in the seven-year range and a cap hit of close to $8 million per season.
Chris Kreider remains with the Rangers with one-year left on his contract and Jeff Gorton said last week “we’ve had a couple of chats with Chris’ group and where it goes with any of our players, we will take some time to figure that out. Today is a big day in getting Panarin but we will move forward in the next few days and start to figure out what is next and where we go from here. Chris, in particular, is a really good player and a player we like a lot and we will continue to talk to his agent and Chris and see what his next.”
The Rangers have used 39 of their 50 contract slots.
The Rangers remain without a coaching staff for the Hartford Wolf Pack.
Adam Rotter: The Rangers still have moves to make and it wouldn’t be shocking if Trouba’s deal gets finalized and announced at some point this week. The overall framework seems agreed to, or close to it, with details such as structure, signing bonuses and no-move/no-trade protection still being ironed out. Once Trouba is locked up the Rangers can then look at how they want to create the cap space to sign Buchnevich, DeAngelo and Lemieux. The belief from some around the league is that the Rangers have some different options but they may be held up by the log-jam of top RFAs and second and third tier UFAs still waiting to sign.
Vlad Namestnikov jumps off the page as the most likely player to be moved but the Rangers don’t want to give him away. It’s more than likely that he will be moved for a pick or two to a team looking for a solid top-nine forward but the Rangers may have to retain some of his salary to get the best return.
Matt Beleskey and his $1.9 million cap hit could give the Rangers some relief in Hartford but he may be someone the Rangers move to a team that needs to get right up to the cap for maximum LTIR benefits. If anything happens related to that it likely won’t happen until right before the season starts.
The feeling from some around the league is that the Rangers plan to keep Kevin Shattenkirk and that, unless a contender was willing to trade for him, he may wield his no-move/no-trade protection to make sure of it. The Rangers don’t appear too keen on using a buyout on Shattenkirk unless it’s absolutely necessary. The right side and PP are both crowded with Trouba, Tony DeAngelo and Adam Fox but Fox may start the season in Hartford with the hope he follows Ryan McDonagh’s development path instead of Matt Gilroy’s.
Brendan Smith remains the most likely Ranger to be bought out but that still remains to be seen. The preference would be to move Smith in a trade but that is much easier said than done for a defenseman that played more forward than defense for parts of last season.
Then there is Chris Kreider as the Rangers face a situation of needing to be move him before the season starts or find some way to lock him up long-term. Kreider does have some control with a limited NTC but I don’t think either side is interested in heading to training camp in the current situation. I still believe that the Rangers intended to sign Kreider long-term but that things changed in a big way when Artemi Panarin signed. There was no reason to keep Kreider at the deadline, when his value was at his absolute highest, if the intention wasn’t to extend him and the same holds true of the draft. There are a number of teams that would be a fit for Kreider with Boston, Montreal and Columbus all making sense.