A possible nightmare scenario for the Rangers and their fans has a serious possibility of playing out this season. If the Blueshirts struggle in the new "Metropolitan Division" and fail to make the playoffs there is a real chance that Henrik Lundqvist might look elsewhere in an attempt to get his name etched on the Stanley Cup.
If that frightening circumstance comes to fruition, where does that leave the Rangers? Would they promote from within? Look to free agency? With the lack of legit goaltending prospects in the system, I find the former very unlikely. So who will be available on the open market next summer for the Rangers to choose from? Joe Yerdon at Pro Hockey Talk gives us the list...
Jonas Hiller, Ryan Miller, Corey Crawford, Semyon Varlamov (RFA), Devan Dubnyk, Martin Brodeur, Evgeni Nabokov, Robin Lehner (RFA), Ray Emery, Steve Mason (RFA), Tomas Vokoun, Jaroslav Halak, Brian Elliott, Anders Lindback (RFA), and James Reimer (RFA).
It has been reported that Lundqvist, who recently described on-going negotiations with the Rangers as "volatile," will likely be looking for the maximum eight-year, $80 million contract.
...i'm sorry folks, but if Lundqvist doesn't budge from his demands, I really do think the Rangers should seriously look in another direction. Locking a 31-year old goaltender up for eight years at $10M per is beyond the height of stupidity in the salary cap NHL. The Rangers would be much better off either trading Hank (Malkin?) or letting him walk and signing one of the above goaltenders.
...and the one guy who jumps out at me on that list is Hiller. He has a lifetime 2.51 gaa and .917 sv % and will likely not be re-signed by the Ducks as they seem to favor Fasth over him. Let me ask you this. Would you rather Lundqvist and the current roster for the next eight years or Hiller and the ability to add one or two top scorers such as Kessel, Stasney, the Sedin twins or Vanek, who are all UFAs next offseason and still have enough (with Richards buyout) for 2015 when names such as Toews, Kane, Krejci and Bobby Ryan become UFAs?
...fyi, with training camp right around the corner, I promise you, articles such as this will be ending.
I don't think it's necessarily the money Hank is looking for. I think he wants the Cup and he may be willing to wait until free agency to make a decision. If the team falters again for lack of offense, they'll be looking to spend megabucks for a scorer, leaving less money and hope for Hank.
I actually think this was a good article Kevin and I personally have no problem talking about the post king era. I would let him walk and use the cash to sign multiple players. Look, I love the guy and realize he's a huge part of the team, but he's been out dueled on more than one occasion in the playoffs and is certainly not worth $10 Mil per year. Gotta play it smart.
Nope. I choose to bury my head in the sand and pretend this is not a possibility. Thanks for asking.
I'd let him walk at $10Mill per. Hate saying that, but it's a reality that we'd have to face. The money is better spent spread around the whole team, (see: 2 cups in 3 years for Corey Crawford and the Blackhawks)
Give him a max of $8.5 for the years. That would make him the highest paid goalie by $1.5 Million and he'd probably stay the highest paid for the length of the contract. Quick is the only one who I think could command more, and he is signed through 2021
None !!!! King Henrik is the ONLY reason the Rangers made the playoffs . The Rangers played awful last season . Except between the pipes .
You cannot trade Hank. No team will give up assets for him unless they have an agreement in advance on a long term contract. Hank has the power since he won't sign a contract with just anybody. He wants to win Cups and if the Rangers don't measure up, he'll likely end up a Penguin unless Fleury rejuvenates. Hank wants to be in NY, but it appears he'll end up where the best chance to win a cup is.
Hiller is absolutely the choice among those guys. I still think a deal gets done and we overpay a little bit (it won't be a max deal) and use the Richards buyout to add another top guy. Don't forget, you'd be getting a coveted FA goalie in Hiller. You'd still have to compensate him too...
@TheNYRBlog You shut your filthy whore mouth, Kevin. I will consider no other options. NO OTHER OPTIONS. Have a lovely day. :)
Tough one. But do we really know what Lundquist's "demands" are? It seems like a bit of hardball is part of the job when you're a top player. He's just doing his job. He will sign with the Rangers though.
@TheNYRBlog no likes a buzz kill
if we wants to play hardball then play hardball. this is the business of the league, plus look at the past few cup winners; not real stand out goalies, except for Quick.
If we are talking about trade options I would rather ship Hank out to Ottawa for Lehner and Ryan, but they probably would not do that.
Stop it stop it stop it you're acting like that kid in class before the final exam who makes everybody crazy so then he gets in and sets the curve while everyone else panics and fails...
I'm good with Hank leaving. I'd rather him say that he'd take a discount though. but if it means Hiller or Crawford and a guy like Malkin then I'd take it. we'd need to get a lot for Hank. a spoon full of sugar makes the medicine go down according to Mary Poppins and Tobias Funke.
@TheNYRBlog But those are valid points you've made.
@TheNYRBlog We would have to be a lot better defensively for Hiller to thrive as he did earlier for Ana.
Unfortunately, unless Hank gets sign, articles like this will become more and more frequent!
As much as I hate it, you almost have to give him both the years and the $$$. His cap hit is $7M now, another million to lock up the goaltending situation until and heir apparent is found is probably worth the risk. If they do end up trading him, It had better be for an established goalie and another area of need. Something like a trade with Montreal for P.K. Subban and Price, or Carolina for Falk and Ward (and something more). This will get done though and we can stop worrying and then start talking about what a huge albatross of a contract it is in 2 years!
worst question in the history of hockey journalism. whats he gunna be the king of winnepeg haha. never that
@TheNYRBlog Is it wrong that the only reason I like the idea of Nabokov is because I'm a fan of the author? Wait, yes it is. I'm sorry.
I find it hard to believe that Hank would want such a contract if he wants to win (conflicting ideas!). I know there's no harm in just talking about this stuff, but it seems like we're bracing for our typical crisis mode before training camp even starts!
@TheNYRBlog it'd be much easier if they developed a goalie in the system. Slats fail.
@TheNYRBlog Kevin, You picked the wrong week to stop sniffing glue! lol
@Old Fogey Agreed.
@Chris M I think they work it out but you're right Chris, the top 5 or so goalies are pretty darn close, even if for argument sake we say henry is the best these guys are all close to par, so do you lock up all your assets on one guy, even if your goalie is your most important dude or do you use that money to get several guys and build a solid depth. Even 8M is steep but he's The King. I believe they get it done.in that range.
@nyrfan747 Because it's the end of August and I've complete run out of shit to blog about.
@rangermom C'mon, at least amuse me. lol
@TonyPLaygroup LOL! My bad.
@tygalpin Only two more weeks and posts such as these go away. I promise (fingers crossed, lol).
@NewYorkPuck Organization is sans legit goaltending prospect.
As far off as it may seem, this could all be a diversion untill the season is over. Hank could already have his mind set on looking at who wants him in free agency. As tight as things are now, many teams could have a lot of money to spend.
The thing here is that if Hank wants a max contract, how does any GM field a competative team around that contract? I think between 7 & 8 mil is plenty. Above that he's only hurting the team. Hank shouldn't play for free but we shall see what kind of person he really is. If there is no extension by seasons end, I'd guess he wants to test free agency and that means he's gone. Some team will give him a max contract.
Obviously we know the Rangers can add an 8th year on the contract that 29 other teams can't offer to free agents. The way I see this is like this. Sather is getting rather long in the tooth these days. I can't see him as the acting GM much longer. Hanks agent is probably making a case for a max deal. Sather and Co will talk that down but they'll give him however much he has to in order to keep Lundqvist. Sather knows he probably won't be around in the last 3 years of that 8 year contract. Maybe even more like the last 4 or 5 years of that deal. Hank doesn't need the money. He don't play for food but a slight raise on his current AAV should suffice!
@TheNYRBlog @NewYorkPuck Didn't we just sign the kid from Yale that won the frozen four yet went undrafted? Not saying he's definetely "The One" but thats pretty close to the best resume you're going to get out of an American-Born goaltending prospect.
@TheNYRBlog Good answer!