Brady Skjei

The Panthers were reportedly also trying to get Brady Skjei

According to Pierre LeBrun, the Florida Panthers were also interested in acquiring Brady Skjei before yesterday’s deadline. (The Athletic)

LeBrun says that the issue between the Panthers and Rangers was that Florida wanted the Rangers to take a contract back that would have evened out the salaries and cap hits. (The Athletic)

As LeBrun notes, that didn’t work for a “Rangers team that was only dealing Skjei away for salary cap reasons after signing Chris Kreider to an extension and looking ahead to offseason, cap-related decisions.” (The Athletic)

As part of the talks, LeBrun thinks that the Panthers offered Mike Matheson, a 25-year old left shot defenseman that is in the second-year of an eight-year contract that has a cap hit of $4.875 million.

While speaking about trading Skjei, Jeff Gorton cited cap flexibility, a strong draft and the teams strength on defense organizationally as reasons for the move.

Adam Rotter: Since this was a salary dump, the Rangers weren’t going to take on any money, or at least any money that would have stayed on the cap past this season. Everything about the trade, down to the fact that they are getting the lower of Carolina’s two first-round picks, screams salary dump and a desire from the Rangers to go into the offseason without Skjei on the roster. Maybe Skjei could have been part of a bigger deal at the draft that netted the Rangers other assets than a first round pick, but the Rangers didn’t want to hold onto him and run the risk of injury, more inconsistent play or that hypothetical deal not materializing and Skjei still being on the roster come July 1. In the end, the Rangers were able to move Skjei, not retain any of his salary and get the first round pick they would have gotten had they traded Chris Kreider.

Brady Skjei

Brady Skjei traded to Carolina (Updating)

7:10PM: The Rangers have officially announced the trade as:

  • To Carolina: Brady Skjei
  • To NYR: 2020 1st Round Pick, “The later selection of the two first-round picks that the Hurricanes own (either Carolina’s own first-round pick or Toronto’s first-round pick).”

The Hurricanes noted in their press release, “If the Hurricanes have more than one first-round selection, the latest first-round pick will be the one that transfers to New York.”

In their release they said of Skjei, “Brady is a big defenseman who checks all the boxes. He’s an excellent skater, he’s competitive, he can move the puck and he can defend. He’s under contract through the 2023-24 season, so this is another acquisition that helps us immediately and in the long-term.”

3:11PM: Brady Skjei has been traded to Carolina for a first-round pick. (TSN)

Adam Rotter: As of now, before the deal is announced and we know for sure what the Rangers got back, it seems like a straight up salary dump by the Rangers. That isn’t good or bad, it’s just a straight up way for the Rangers to open up money to re-sign or acquire new players this summer. Skjei is signed long-term and is still young, so you’d think he could fetch more than a first round pick, and maybe he could have, but if the main goal was to clear space by moving Skjei, then they accomplished that and acquired a first-round pick as well. Trading Skjei within the division and only getting a first-round pick, for someone you will play four-times a year for years to come, also seems odd and a little underwhelming.

The actual trading of Skjei isn’t entirely surprising, though I thought it was more likely he’d be dealt in the summer than today. He has been consistently inconsistent in his time with the Rangers and never took that next step to fill the void left by Ryan McDonagh. He’s good enough that he could have stayed to be part of the rebuild, but with how Ryan Lindgren has established himself, Libor Hajek in Hartford and K’Andre Miller, and others, on the way, he was the logical defenseman to be traded.

2:24PM: Larry Brooks tweets that Skjei “could be in play” and that the Hurricanes have been “sniffing around” him.

1:42PM: Darren Dreger notes that a first-round pick from Carolina is believed to be part of the trade discussions though the Canes cap issues are “complicating things.”

Carolina has two first-round picks this year, their own and Toronto’s.

1:34PM: Pierre LeBrun tweets that the Rangers and Hurricanes have been discussing a potential Brady Skjei trade.

LeBrun notes though that Carolina has cap issues “so not clear where this goes.” (LeBrun)

The Rangers and Hurricanes made a trade last week when the Rangers acquired Julien Gauthier for Joey Keane.

Skjei, 25, has four-more years on his contract after this season with a cap hit of $5.25 million.

As of right now, Carolina only has $2.69 million of cap space.

Carolina acquired forward Vincent Trocheck this morning from Florida.

2019-20 Rangers, Brady Skjei

Why Brady Skjei didn’t play against Carolina

10:50AM: David Quinn said on 98.7 ESPN Radio on Friday, “The problem with Brady is that he cares so much, I know that might sound crazy but this guy wants to please so many people, puts too much pressure on himself. He had two really good games and against Tampa and Nashville and then there was just a drop in his play. One of the things we’ve talked about with him, you aren’t going to have a great night every night but you can’t have a big drop in your play. We’ve got 7D that we like and want to get involved, there isn’t a lot of wiggle room for defensemen these days, you have to play well if you want to stay in the lineup. He and I had a couple of conversations regarding it. We went through a similar thing last year early on and I’m anticipating him rebounding because he did last year but this is the NHL, when you don’t play well you should be expected not to play, that is the way it works, that is the way life works. If you want to stay in the lineup you’ve got to play well. Playing OK doesn’t cut it, you have to play well. He had two real good games, I thought his game slipped the next two, he’ll get back in and I’m anticipating he will make the most of his opportunity.”

9:36AM: David Quinn said after last night’s win over Carolina that Brady Skjei was healthy and a healthy scratch.

When asked why, Quinn said “I just think he needs to play better.” (NYR)

In 13 games this season, Skjei has one goal, four assists, 14 PIM, an even rating, 28 shots on goal, 12 blocked shots, 9 hits, 2 takeaways and 14 giveaways in 19:32 per game.

On 11/1, Quinn said of Skjei “he wants to do so well, so badly and sometimes that is his biggest problem. One of the things you see when he’s playing well is the confidence in his look, the gaps, when he gets to a puck he’s decisive. To me it’s his gap that can tell you whether he is feeling good about his game or not, I thought he had a really good game the other night.”

On 10/20, after Skjei was benched for part of the second period, Quinn said “we are looking for more out of him, he’s gotta play better and be more consistent.”

Skjei is in the second-year of a six-year contract that has a cap hit of $5.25 million.

Adam Rotter: Brady Skjei, and Marc Staal, will probably slot into the Rangers lineup more often than not this season but they are being pushed for spots and ice time by Libor Hajek and Ryan Lindgren. The Rangers have been looking for consistency and steps forward from Skjei for a while and while he has had ups and downs, all the sudden there is competition and young players who don’t look out of place on defense. Hajek and Lindgren will have ups and downs as rookies but the early returns have been exciting and promising.

When the Rangers embarked on their rebuild they looked at Skjei as someone the defense could be built around, but he hasn’t become that player. If Skjei can find his game then he can still be part of things with the Rangers moving forward, otherwise it’s probably likely he will try to find that consistency in another uniform. Skjei’s skating and the fact that he is signed at a fixed number will make him attractive on the trade market, but the Rangers are hoping not to go down that road.

2019 World Championships, Brady Skjei

Brady Skjei named Player of the Game in USA win over Kakko/Finland

Brady Skjei scored a goal and was named Team USA’s player of the game in their OT win over Finland.

Skjei played 21:48 and had two shots on goal.

Chris Kreider was a plus one in 13:57 and tied up a Finnish player that allowed Johnny Gaudreau to score Team USA’s 2nd goal.

Adam Fox had one shot in 11:50.

For Finland, Kaapo Kakko had six shots on goal and a plus one rating in 18:46.

Russia defeated the Czech Republic 3-0 and in that game Filip Chytil had one shot in 11:52 for the Czechs.

Brady Skjei, Chris Kreider

What Brady Skjei and Chris Kreider said on NHL Network

Chris Kreider and Brady Skjei were on NHL Now on the NHL Network and said the following:

  • Skjei | Why play for Team USA: : “I saw the roster and team that they put together, Chris Drury and the other managers did a great job. When you see that many talented players going over and representing your country it’s usually a good sign.”
  • Kreider | “It’s a huge honor, a fun tournament and seeing parts of the world you’ve never seen before the and the competition is pretty elite.”
  • Kreider | “I shot on Henrik Lundqvist the past week and a half, just me and him.”
  • Kreider | How long did you shoot with Henrik, “as long as he wanted pucks, he likes seeing shots. I score a handful of goals…”
  • Skjei | On Henrik Lundqvist, “he had his ups and downs but it’s unbelievable how competitive he is and how focused he is every day. He comes to the rink and is usually the last guy off the ice taking shootouts, before games, so focused. To see that every day and learn off it is really huge.”
  • Skjei | On Zuccarello and Dallas “been texting him here and there, we want them to keep going…I’m a big Stars fan right now.”
  • Did you watch the draft lottery
  • Kreider | “I got a text from people pretty surprised we got the second overall pick. When you can add a top-five pick to the lineup and someone that can contribute right away, that is a huge get for us.”
  • Skjei | What is your summer like after the Worlds, “A few golf trips, heading to Colorado for a weekend. Going back to Minnesota and train and play in DaBeautyLeague.”
  • Kreider | “I don’t have much planned, I’m not really a golfer. Just trying and get outside and get some sun, get back to work.”
  • Kreider | What do you do for fun, “Wiffle-ball”