With the Rangers in the midst of a rebuild, Mats Zuccarello future was up in the air. We now have some clarity where he will play next year.
In a report by Larry Brooks of the New York Post, Zuccarello is expected to be with the team at training camp. Brooks noted that the only way the Rangers would trade Zuccarello is “unless there is a dramatic shift this week.”
Without a doubt, Zuccarello has become a fan favorite since making his debut with the Blueshirts back in the 2010-2011 season. Most thought his height would be at a disadvantage, but it only made the Blueshirt faithful love him even more.
He’s scored 281 points since the start of the 2013-14 season. Helped lead the team to an Eastern Conference Championship, and their first Stanley Cup Final appearance since 1994. His absence in the teams’ run in 2014-15 playoff arguably cost them another trip the Stanley Cup Final.
You really had to wonder how far general manager Jeff Gorton wanted to go with this rebuild. The team already traded some familiar faces at the trade deadline, and the thought was they would continue to do so this offseason. But Gorton and upper management feel that Zuccarello is an important part of bringing the next crop of young players.
You have to wonder if the Rangers are missing out on not trading the 30-year-old. His value might never be as high. He is also in the final year of his contract and it would be smart to get some young talent in return.
Nonetheless, the plan is to keep him and hopefully, it means some success in the not so distant future.