The New York Rangers are still waiting to make their big move this offseason, as they are still desperate to add some playmakers to their roster to help them take the next step and get to the Stanley Cup Finals. After losing to the New Jersey Devils in six games in the Eastern Conference Finals last season, New York has been linked to many big names over the past few weeks.
The question is, will they be able to land any of them?
It was apparent from the beginning that New York would not be able to land Zach Parise, who was seen as the prize of this year’s free agent class. The former Devils standout said he would never play in New York, and it was clear that he and Ryan Suter were going to be a package deal. The Minnesota Wild reaped the benefits of that particular package.
So with the top two free agents off the board, the Rangers have a few other options going forward. They could try and sign Alexander Semin to help bolster an anemic offense. New York would hope that after a somewhat down year last season, Semin could turn things around in his Broadway debut much like Marian Gaborik did when he joined the Blueshirts.
Or, they could try to sign a few players who would not cost as much against the salary cap, perhaps targeting Shane Doan. He would be an instant boost to New York’s offense. They could also make a run at players including Andrei Kostitsyn, Ryan Carter, Mike Knuble or Daniel Winnink. Aside from Doan, none would carry the big name recognition, but adding a few of them would make a difference.
Or they could go the eventual route that many people are simply waiting for to happen and make a big trade.
The Rangers have been linked to Rick Nash since prior to last season’s trade deadline, but they would not cave into the high asking price of the Columbus Blue Jackets. While I maintain they should still sit back and let someone else overpay for Nash, the Rangers may feel they are desperate. If they don’t land Nash, they have also been rumored to have expressed interest in acquiring Bobby Ryan from the Anaheim Ducks, who I feel would be a better acquisition for many reasons.
But the latest rumblings have the Rangers getting involved with the Nashville Predators about defenseman Shea Weber. Once the Preds lost Suter, Weber became a little more hesitant in his desire to sign a long term deal in Nashville. Weber is a restricted free agent who the Predators will not let walk simply for draft picks, so they could sign him and trade him for a very lucrative package, and the Rangers certainly have the pieces. It is being reported that while certain players are off limits for a player such as Nash, they may consider moving them for Weber.
While not an offensive player, Weber was on the ice for more power play goals than any other player in the game last season.