2023 New York Rangers Offseason

What to expect from the Rangers as Free Agency opens

11:48AM: The NHL has officially announced that the Rangers UFAs are: Ryan Carpenter, Jaroslav Halak, Patrick Kane, Niko Mikkola, Tyler Motte, C.J. Smith, Vladimir Tarasenko, Tim Gettinger, Wyatt Kalynuk, William Lockwood, Libor Hajek, Patrick Khodorenko, Cooper Zech.

7 AM: Free Agency opens today and the Rangers are slated to have around $11,7 million in cap space according to Cap Friendly.

Both the New York Post and The Athletic quoted agents as saying that the Rangers had “no $$” or “no money” when it came to free agency.


The Rangers pending RFAs include Alexis Lafreniere and K’Andre Miller and their pending UFAs include Patrick Kane, Tyler Motte, Vladimir Tarasenko, Nikko MIkola, and Jaro Halak.

The Rangers are expected to sign Jonathan Quick to be their backup goalie.

Adam Rotter: It’s very possible that the only move the Rangers make today is signing a backup goalie. Everyone and everything else has to wait to a certain extent until they get Lafreniere and Miller signed. The Rangers can’t go spending half their money and then risk potential offer sheets for Miller and Lafreniere. Offer sheets are rare and while they have become a bit more common lately there is no indication that Lafreniere or Miller would solicit them or want to sign them.

Lafreniere is almost certainly going to get a similar bridge deal to the two-year deals in the $2 million range that both Filip Chytil and Kaapo Kakko signed. It’s way too risky to try anything long-term with Lafreniere until he begins showing his potential. Filip Chytil signed a four-year deal last season after finally starting to prove out, Kaapo Kakko certainly seems like he is trending toward a multi-year deal either this season or next summer when he’s an RFA and if Lafreniere begins to reach his potential then the Rangers won’t hesitate to give him a bigger contract down the line.

Miller is a different story and the Rangers have a long history, going back to Glen Sather’s days as GM, of giving high potential young defensemen longer-term contracts. That potential is certainly there with Miller and while I think the Rangers would do that and they have the space to go 4-5-6 years at various cap hits of $4 million plus, the question is whether Miller wants that or if he wants a shorter-term deal and then to cash in more when the cap starts going up. A bridge or smaller contract now gives the Rangers more space to work with this year but could cost them more down the line. Unlike Lafreniere who still needs to prove he is worth a long-term deal, Miller definitely is.

Tyler Motte wanted to return last year, but the Rangers couldn’t meet his price and went in another direction, and when Motte’s price came down, he signed in Ottawa and eventually returned via trade. If Motte wants to return I think it could work, but it may not happen today. They will look at other bottom-six depth options but may get priced out and so it may take a couple of days, but I think Motte could return.

Besides all that, I’m not sure how much the Rangers will or can do unless or until they get things settled with Lafreniere and Miller. Some minor-league depth guys will sign, but that seems like it could be it and then whatever holes remain will get patched up during the season or at the trade deadline.

As for the Rangers pending free agents, there is buzz from people around the league that Tarasenko is going to be staying in the Metro and the Islanders and Hurricanes both make sense as they look for offense. Mikkola would be nice to keep, but someone will give him more than the Rangers can, especially in the role the Rangers had him in.