Following the Rangers signing of Jacob Trouba, the Rangers currently have $1.76 million in cap space for a 19 player roster that includes Matt Beleskey, Brendan Smith and Boo Nieves in Hartford.
The Rangers still need to sign Tony DeAngelo, Brendan Lemieux and Pavel Buchnevich as RFAs. Buchnevich is scheduled for an arbitration hearing on 7/29.
Larry Brooks tweeted that DeAngelo, Lemieux and Buchnevich are expected to account for a total between $4.75 million and $5.25 million.
Following the resolution of Buchnevich’s contract situation the Rangers will have a 72 hour window to buyout players. The 72 hour window begins 48 hours after the resolution of Buchnevich’s situation.
The potential buyout cap hits for certain Rangers are:
(Ryan Stome was originally listed but he can’t be bought out in the second window because his cap hit is less than $3,455,438.) (CapFriendly)
It was reported earlier this week that the Rangers are struggling to find trade partners for certain players.
Adam Rotter: One thing we know for sure at this point is that at least one Ranger currently on the roster won’t be when the Rangers need to be under or at the $81.5 million upper limit. Who that player is and how the Rangers get under the upper limit is still up for grabs but they do have options. None of them are particularly great options, but whether it’s buyouts, retaining salary or needing to use a sweetener in a trade or some combination of those, the Rangers are likely to be on the hook for some dead cap space. Most of the focus is on Kevin Shattenkirk as Trouba, DeAngelo and Adam Fox are all right shot players needing, especially the latter two, PP time to be at their best. I think Shattenkirk remains to start the season but he will need to perform to stay in the lineup.
Brendan Smith is more likely to be bought out even though he can play both sides on defense and up front. He could be a nice 7th D/13th forward type of guy but not at his cap hit. If he’s bought out he will almost certainly sign somewhere in that role for under $1 million.
Vlad Namestnikov can be a solid top-nine player in the NHL but he doesn’t have a real spot on the Rangers with Artemi Panarin, Kaapo Kakko and Vitali Kravtsov all coming in. He’s almost certainly to be on the move and is definitely a buyout candidate if a trade can’t be found.
Then, of course, there is Chris Kreider and his status as a pending-UFA to be. Chances are, at this point, that it’s more likely he goes than stays but the Rangers don’t have to move him. Maybe they come together on an extension but it just doesn’t seem likely. I truly believe that the Rangers held onto him at the trade deadline because they intended to keep him long-term but that was before Kappo Kakko and before Artemi Panarin. They knew Panarin was an option but he was no guarantee and had they picked 6th in the draft they could have gone defense or for a forward that might need 2-3-4 years to develop into a top-six player. Kakko and Panarin are certainly great things that happened to the Rangers but it definitely threw a wrench of sorts into the Kreider situation. Had the Rangers wanted to move him they could have landed a giant package at the deadline but they kept him and despite their intentions at the time, they may have to move on from him now and do so for a lot less in return.