There has been some talk in the media and by the fans about Mats Zuccarello and his future with the New York Rangers. Right now Zuccarello is in Hartford playing for the Whale, which doesn’t help the Rangers or Zuccarello himself. I don’t think he’s going to improve his skills so much for the Whale which is what the AHL is meant for. He’s basically there sitting on his hands. The real problem for Zuccarello is he’s a top six forward and for him to be effective he needs to play more than four minutes a night, and right now on the Rangers he wouldn’t get a chance to do that.
Join me after the jump for why Mats Zuccarello should be traded.
To go along with the fact that he wouldn’t get a chance to perform as top six forward for the Rangers, Zuke’s cap hit is not a friendly number. A $1.7 million cap hit is a bit much for the Rangers to handle right now. They would really have to move some players around to make room for him on the roster.
Also, I do not think Zuccarello figures into the Rangers future. I thought last year the Rangers called him up only to get their scoring going. I do not think he’s a long term solution for them. With young forwards in the pipeline like Chris Kreider, Christian Thomas, and Carl Hagelin it’s tough to see where Zuccarello will fit in.
I truly believe that Zuccarello should be traded as it could gets us a decent pick in next years draft, a forward or a prospect. I think it would be a mistake to trade him for a NHL defenseman because once Marc Staal gets back everything should be settled on the back end. I think Steve Eminger and Jeff Woywitka have done a decent enough job for us so far. Also, do not forget that Tim Erixon is waiting for a call up and might be playing well enough that he is called up before the season is over.
Another thing to realize is if the Rangers don’t trade Zuccarello they might regret it for when they want to trade him after this season. When all the young forwards are ready to make this club Zuccarello will still be there and will almost be useless for the club. Simply put, if the Rangers want to trade Zuccarello now is the time to do it.