Impending free agent Brandon Prust is likely in his final days as a Ranger, general manager Glen Sather said before the first round of the NHL Draft.
"I don't think we're going to get that one done," according to the GM, whose club selected defenseman Brady Skjei from the USA Under-18 Development Team with the 28th overall pick in the draft. "I like him, the team likes him, everybody likes him . . . but I'm not married to him."
Prust, who tied for the NHL lead with 20 fighting majors and of whom coach John Tortorella said on breakup day, "I love the guy," is eligible to hit the open market July 1.
The 28-year-old winger, who is coming off a two-year deal in which he earned $800,000 per, is believed to be seeking a three-year contract in the range of $6.6 million, while the Rangers are offering approximately $1.2 million less than that over the life of the contract.