New York Rangers, Mats Zuccarello
Photo by Bergen Record

Ryan O’Rielly and the Buffalo Sabers have ruined New York Rangers plan for Derek Stepan’s next contract, so a roster shakeup is needed.

By Steven Cifuentes

The Twitter-world of the New York Rangers exploded like a Jason Pierre-Paul firework last week when the Buffalo Sabres signed Ryan O’Reilly to a 7-year, $52.5 million contract extension. Rangers fans everywhere wondered, and rightfully so, what does this do to the Rangers chances of signing Restricted Free Agent Derek Stepan?

1rangers2The Rangers currently sit at $10.8 million dollars under the current salary cap and have restricted free agents Derek Stepan, Emerson Etem, JT Miller and Jasper Fast to sign.
With the new bar set by the Buffalo Sabres for 50-60 point centermen, Stepan is looking to take up most of that $10.8 million in cap space.

Stepan is superior to Ryan O’Reilly in almost every category. Throw in Stepan’s solid playoff history and you can see why the Rangers are in cap hell.

Jeff Gorton’s first task as Rangers GM is a daunting one. He has to make some moves to free up cap space so the Rangers can get their top center signed and field a full roster.

Here’s the rest of the task-list Gorton needs to meet:

Founder of New York Hockey Message board on Facebook. If you want to know one man's opinion of Rangers hockey, great and awful, he is the man to seek out. Steve is a self proclaimed obsessed Rangers Fan. Steven's perfect romantic evening is a Beer, Wings and a Ranger game on TV with his girlfriend. Girlfriend is optional of course.


  1. No room for Brady Skjei if Yandle if 3rd pairing left side defenseman.
    Yandle is an obvious candidate to trade. Unfortunatly, Sather had his
    pockets picked by Arizona, so the is no chance of getting back a #1
    and an opposiong team’s best minor league prospect.
    If Zuccrello had been moved for 6-5, 215 lb RFA Jimmy Hayes, a case
    could have been made to move Tanner Glass.
    Zuccarello makes $4.5 mil a year and scored ZERO power play goals
    last year…YES ZERO! And Zuccarello lays a lot of time on the power
    play. Jimmy Hayes would be a good replacement for Zuccarello, actually
    score goals on the power play, and not such a tempting 5-7″ target on the
    Tanner Glass is a VERY punishing fighter and excellent body checker
    who takes very few foolish PM. After a Tanner Glass encounter, most
    opponents, often larger, leave the ice bleeding. No one looks for Tanner
    Glass to fight….not a 2nd time anyways. There is a market for a Tanner
    Dan Boyle, not a terrible player, but not a $4.5 mil player…needs to be
    If Stralman was not worth $4.5 mil by Sather, a much inferior injury prone
    player like Staal is not worthy a rudiculous $5.7 mil.
    Steady, mostly healthy 80 gm a year minutes eating right handed players
    like Klein are worth every penny They are physical, score the odd goal,
    and aren’t intimated easily like a Marc Staal. Staal is one injury from
    being dead cap space on the Rangers.
    Above all else, and I know Sather is not the brightest light in the forest after
    the Ryan Clowe & Ryan Callahan deals, Rangers need to acquire players
    who have at least three years control on each player they acquire.
    I believe Hayes & Kreider are next up to bat next year.
    Rangers need to hire management types that can “manage assets”;
    I was able for thirteen years at Citibank, NA as an Asst Vice-President with
    3-4 forcasts.
    Sather………no way
    they get.
    Staal is not worth a million dollars more.

    • Could you please inform all of us what language you’re typing in, because I’m having a hard time translating. I’m sorry, did you say trade Zuccarello for JIMMY HAYES? Look at their track records… NOT on the man advantage. Zuccarello has a far superior skill set, and plays at bigger than 5’7. What kind of hockey do you watch? We traded a second and third for clowe.. Which was a fair deal, and decided not to sign him, shot happens. We had other priorities. Staal I agree is not the same player, but if you look at his possession, and point totals since his eye injury, he’s obviously improving. Will he be the same player again? Who knows, but you’re right; he’s not worth 5.7 million a year but definitely not one million.. As for tanner glass, what market are you looking at????? Everyone is movin away from enforcers………… For someone that was VP at citi bank, you sound like you know as much about hockey, as the young bro-fessionals that show up to MSG with a brand new jersey over their suit. I dunno what game you’re watching, but it ain’t hockey. Stick to your numbers, suit.

      • Jimmy Hayes had 4 PPG last season
        Zuccs 0 PPG

        Hayes 19 goals playing part time for Panthers
        Zuccs 15 goals for Rangers playing on 1st or 2nd line.

        So how big does Zuccs play?
        Hayes 20 PM 145 hits
        Zuccs 45 PM 120 hits

        My history with the Rangers preceeds Bathgate & Larry Cahan.

        You have yet to learn even what I have already forgotten

        • Nice… and I too don’t understand the venom that is spewed at Mr. Glass. Sure he is overpaid (to me by about 600k)..but he is THE the villain on every blog.. it is not the guys making 5.7MM that perhaps deserve 4MM that are the problem it is invariably he that is brought up. After all he is the 12th forward on the team. I guess it is just the new nicer NHL that we all must adapt to..and the possession stats that only matter.. and i guess there is no room for toughness (except when lucic clobbers your top dman behind the net over and over).. I have had this out so many times, it is tiring. No room for one guy on the team who stands up occasionally? Ok so he should have been paid 900K for his services.. But lets move on. His contract will not be the cause of Stepan not signing or whatever. This is not the 1980’s for sure but there are only a few Backes’ or Lucic’s , out there so, guys that can really play and stand up,,,Having said that, Who replaces Yandle if not a call-up? He is not making that much and the team is still “going for it”. And perhaps Klein does get traded but why is he a “luxury”? He is borderline 4th /5th dman.. he is 100th highest paid dman in the league. By those stats he is overpaid in 2014 dollars by about 20% (or about 500-600K). He is not wildly overpaid, unless he is soo solidly a bottom pair guy luxury. He will go and perhaps Glass too because another dman on the team is making way too much (over 5MM) and that is ultimately the problem.

  2. I agree with the last part of this article, When a team is facing Cap issues, it is time to rebuild the team with young players in the system. No need to panic, let him walk save the money to get what the team is lack of, tough hard hitting go to the net forwards. Hayes is capable to take Stephen’s place. Time to move on Groton, you can’t follow what Sather did. No more ridiculous long fat contract. Get rid of DG and Staal and give Skjei and Big Mc a chance.