New York Rangers, Mats Zuccarello
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This offseason has seen Jeff Gorton make many solid moves. If he can find a way to add Kevin Shattenkirk at the right price, his first summer on the job would surely be considered a success.

After the St. Louis Blues were eliminated in Game 6 of the Western Conference Finals this past season, many people believed that defenseman Kevin Shattenkirk had played his last game with team.

Shattenkirk is entering the final year of his contract and with the Blues having a ton of depth defensively and limited cap space, the six-year veteran was likely to be shown the exit door in St. Louis.

Come July 25, Shattenkirk is still waiting for directions to find this exit door and as each day goes by, the possibility of him playing out the final season of his four year contract without the Blues getting anything in return only increases.

This offseason has certainly seen many moving pieces since the Pittsburgh Penguins lifted the Stanley Cup in June, but Doug Armstong’s inability to move the right-handed point man is one that has surprised many around the National Hockey League. What happened?

Now don’t get me wrong, it certainly hasn’t been due to a lack of interest. Teams around the league have been vying for Shattenkirk’s services all summer without much luck. However, there have been some close calls.

RELATED: Ryan McDonagh’s Progress Vital For Rangers Success

The Edmonton Oilers were rumored to be close to a deal, but Shattenkirk was apparently unwilling to sign an extension in the heart of Canada.

In addition, the Blues asking price for Shattenkirk is probably high. Being that this year’s free agency class was rather thin defensively, Armstrong is in a situation where he can command a lot for the 27-year-old and likely get something close to the return the Blues are in search of.

Clearly, St. Louis hasn’t found what they are looking for yet.

One team that has been said to be interested in the Blues point man is the New York Rangers. They are definitely in need of a point scoring defenseman after the departure of Keith Yandle to the Florida Panthers. Shattenkirk could very well be that guy.

Actually, if you look deeper into each of their statistics, they are eerily similar. Yandle had 47 points in 82 games, while Shattenkirk put up 44 points in 72 games. Also, the two each had 22 and 26 power play points, respectively.

It would be really hard to find someone who could replace Yandle other than Shattenkirk. The Connecticut native would absolutely fill a need in New York.

The Blueshirts and Shattenkirk are a match made in heaven. The former first-round pick grew up in New Rochelle and has said he has always dreamed of playing in the World’s Most Famous Arena. His twitter account bio even says, “New Yorker at heart.”

He would fit in perfectly on the first pairing with Ryan McDonagh and would be a staple on the right point of the first power play unit for Alain Vigneault’s squad.

Another positive for the Rangers is that Shattenkirk would be more than open to an extension. The Boston University product will likely command around $6-7 million in his next contract, but has said that he would take a pay cut if he came back home.

That is essential for the Blueshirts considering they only have about $3.5 million in cap space at the moment. It would also assure that Shattenkirk’s addition would be long term.

With that said, bringing him home would certainly be no easy task. One name that has been thrown around in Shattenkirk talks is Rick Nash. If Jeff Gorton does send Nash to St. Louis, there would no longer be any issues with cap space with his $7.8 million coming off the books, but Vigneault would be losing one of his top wingers.

The Blues have to replace David Backes somehow and although Nash isn’t a center, his big frame could help replace the former St. Louis’ captain’s large presence up front.

A trade for Shattenkirk would leave the Blueshirts with a defensive logjam. Even though they do have a need for a puck-moving defenseman, they still would have too many defenseman on the roster.

The additions of Nick Holden and Adam Clendening would be an issue for the Rangers going forward, leaving them with nine capable defenseman (including Shattenkirk). With that being the case, Gorton may be forced to send a defenseman to St. Louis like Dylan McIlrath or, if they get lucky, Dan Girardi or Marc Staal.

Some combination of a forward (possibly Nash), a young defenseman, and a pick for Shattenkirk could be enough to pry away one of St. Louis’ top defenders.

Any trade for Shattenkirk would be tough to get done, but at the right price it would be a no-brainer for Jeff Gorton and company.

NEXT: The Current State Of Rangerstown

14 COMMENTS

  1. Trades usually happen when BOTH teams’ needs are met. Nash isn’t wanted in STL, and neither is another defenseman. Just because the Rangers have some junk in the closet doesn’t mean that is what the other team wants in return in a trade. Overpriced Nash and trash won’t get the Rangers Shattenkirk. If that is the best offer NYR puts together, he will be in Boston or Philadelphia for the next 8 years.

    • Agreed, but I think Shattenkirk resists the urge to sign a long term deal and will go the free agency route UNLESS he’s traded to the Rangers. I expect Girardi gets bought out next year when the cost is much more manageable … but one way or another, for the Rangers to make this trade, they have to move a d’man this year. That said, STL has clearly indicated they want prospects and/or draft picks, something which is highly prized right now in the Organization after years of moving both. If a trade happens it probably needs a precursor trade to be feasible.

      • Shattenkirk has provided the Blues with a list of four teams he would sign an extension with. Clearly NYR and the Bruins are among those four, but the other two teams are unknown.

        After losing Backes for nothing this year, it is highly unlikely the Blues let Shattenkirk walk for mo return. He will be worth more to a team that he will extend with. Thus, Shattenkirk will be traded, and to a team that will extend him. Sitting back now is a recipe for Shattenkirk to be visiting MSG, not playing there regularly.

        • Hadn’t seen that, do you have a link? If that’s true then I say PASS. The last thing we should be doing is trading away the few good prospects we have and draft choices in the 1st or 2nd round. Besides, I still believe there needs to be a trade consummated prior, of either Staal and Girardi, which are both tall orders.

      • Again, the Blues are defense heavy. That’s why Shattenkirk is available. And why would the Rangers eat Nash cap. He’s an OK player, just overpaid. So if you are paying the overpaid part of his salary anyway, why not keep him?

  2. St louis is not just gonna want picks and prospects tho, they are a team who was two wins away from the stanley cup last year so in trading Shattenkirk, they would need good nhl players back, not just trying to get better for the future. So my point with Nash is that Nash is a player who still has a good amount of value if the Rangers would eat some of his salary and the Blues have a need to fill up front. Nash could absolutely fill that

  3. If the rangers truly want to improve the back then as unpopular as this may be the guy they need to ship out is Kreider. the contracts in terms of cap hit are virtually identical and the Blues are in need of what Kreider’s upside could bring having just lost Backes. Now the reason I don’t do it is that Shattenkirk is a UFA after next season, however they would have the cap space to get him in as long as he isn’t looking to break the bank. A contract of 4 years 22 million may get it done, but the rangers almost need to know they can lock him up before going forward with that deal. As a Rangers fan i would prefer trying to send hayes but im not sure that leaves enough cap space to get him signed in terms of what is available under the cap. But the thought that dan Girardi may be a healthy scratch does ease the churning in my stomach this trade would cause. A dcorp of mcdonagh/shattenkirk Staal/Klein Skjei/Holden would be a major updgrade. however they would then have to go out and add another forward because if that means AV suits up Tanner Glass that would cause me ulcers. They really need to buy him out or trade that guy to the Siberian Huskies of the KHL so AV has no way to put him on the ice. He has no business playing at the NHL level so if this deal means that then it isn’t worth it.

    • Not a chance you get Kreider for just Shatty….. throw in Jaskin and a 2nd Rd pick….. Shattenkirk Is not that good….. Blues fans think they’re trading the 2nd coming of Paul Coffey….