Originally written on Blue Seat Blogs  |  Last updated 10/19/14
Bruce Bennett/Getty Images The Rangers have a lot of work to do this offseason. In addition to addressing the glaring holes in the lineup, they need to do everything they can to re-sign their core RFAs (Ryan McDonagh, Carl Hagelin, Derek Stepan). Of the three core RFAs, who are all about to receive their second NHL contracts, only Stepan is not eligible for arbitration. It’s unfortunate for Stepan, as he finished the season as the Rangers leading scorer. He loses a lot of leverage without arbitration. Estimating Stepan’s contract is tough. The Rangers haven’t had to re-up a player on their second deal the season after he led the team in scoring. In fact, the closest situation the Rangers have had to the Stepan situation is Brandon Dubinsky’s second contract, and the only similarity there is that neither player is/was arbitration eligible. For this, we need to go to other organizations to determine market value. We don’t need to go far to estimate the Stepan contract. Philadelphia had a very similar situation with Claude Giroux after the 2010-2011 season. Giroux came to mind immediately because we’ve written about his second contract before. Currently Giroux is on a three-year, $11.25 million deal, which is a $3.75 million cap hit. The young center was coming off his entry-level deal and led his team in scoring. Giroux was not arbitration eligible, and the cap ceiling for the upcoming 2011-2012 season was $64.3 million. Not only are the outside factors almost identical, the scoring pace for the two players is almost identical (games played in parenthesis): 1st year 2nd year 3rd year Giroux 27 (42) 47 (82) 76 (82) Stepan 45 (82) 51 (82) 44 (48) It’s a bit scary how similar these situations are. Both players are within five points for each year on their ELC. Both players had since earned the top line center spot in their third year. Both players are core members of their respective clubs for many, many years. I can bet you my life savings that Stepan’s agent is looking at the Giroux deal and using it as a benchmark. This is usually the part of the post where I go ahead and use other factors and players to get a better estimate of a player’s worth. However, that’s not really necessary with the Stepan/Giroux contract comparison. The cap ceiling is the same. The point totals are virtually identical. Neither had arbitration rights. Both led the team in scoring. Both are the top center. It’s all in black and white. Stepan’s contract, in my eyes, is the easiest contract to estimate. The terms may differ –Slats rarely gives out more than two-year bridge contracts, with the lone exception being Marc Staal– but we should be in the ballpark of approximately $3.75 million. Given Slats’ prior history with second contracts, let’s place a safe bet on Stepan getting two or three years at a cap hit of $3.5 million to $4 million. Tweet
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

World Series: Game One live blog

Could the Seahawks have gotten more for Percy Harvin?

Five storylines to watch in the 2014 World Series

Favre delays Lambeau return due of Bart Starr’s health

Cowboys release Michael Sam from practice squad

Fan in critical condition after being beaten before Bears game

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Ben Roethlisberger rips the media

Tim Tebow: Gators don't have offensive leadership, lack heart

Colts punter asks Antonio Brown not to kick him in face

NFL: Luke Kuechly should not have been ejected

Report: Okla. St. players fell asleep in drive-thru, arrested

Oscar Pistorius sentenced to five years in prison

PHOTO: Fans place Manning’s 509 football in Hall of Fame

Jets sign Jeremy Kerley to $16M 4-year extension

10 teams that should try to trade for Yoenis Cespedes

Lego stadiums: turning a childhood hobby into a business

Bayless: Kobe's sexual assault trial gave him 'edge' and 'sizzle'

Blackhawks make leukemia patient's dream come true

College football's post-Week 8 Playoff projection

Ortiz surprised military families with World Series tickets

NFL Power Rankings Week 7

Floyd Mayweather posts photo evidence of a lost bet

WATCH: Paul George takes court for first time since leg injury

Five most surprising NFL players through seven weeks

NHL News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

World Series: Game One live blog

Cowboys release Michael Sam

Bayless: Kobe's sexual assault trial gave him 'edge'

10 teams that should try to trade for Yoenis Cespedes

Five storylines to watch in the 2014 World Series

Ben Roethlisberger rips media

NFL Power Rankings Week 7

Pistorius sentenced to five years

Lane Kiffin trashed in political ad

Details of War Machine's suicide letter leaked

Angry Jimbo Fisher cuts off interview

Is Kobe's deal hurting the Lakers?

Today's Best Stuff
For Bloggers

Join the Yardbarker Network for more promotion, traffic, and money.

Company Info
Help
What is Yardbarker?

Yardbarker is the largest network of sports blogs and pro athlete blogs on the web. This site is the hub of the Yardbarker Network, where our editors and algorithms curate the best sports content from our network and beyond.