May 23, 2012; New York, NY, USA; New Jersey Devils defenseman Bryce Salvador (24) and New York Rangers center Artem Anisimov (42) battle for the puck in game five of the 2012 Eastern Conference Finals at Madison Square Garden. Devils won 5-3. Mandatory Credit: Debby Wong-US PRESSWIRE

Could Management Give Up On Anisimov Or Stepan This Summer?

During trade talks this summer, Glen Sather will certainly be asked to throw in either Derek Stepan or Artem Anisimov into a deal, especially if it involves a big name player. Young, up and coming players of Anisimov’s and Stepan’s caliber are often thrown around to get a solid established player in the league. But the question remains, if Sather felt the deal was right would he trade one of them or both of them?

To me it would be silly to trade them for a couple reasons. For one thing they are both extremely young, and are still trying to find their way on this team and in the league. At times both of these centers look like they are going to break out and be 60 point players in the league. Then there are the other times when they look completely overpowered, and ineffective. This usually happens when they are stuck playing against tougher defenseman or the other team’s checking line.

My Thoughts- Trading Anisimov or Stepan is highly foolish at the moment. This is a team that lost in the Eastern Conference Finals due to depth and management would be taking that away by trading either of these centers. Being deep in the center position is also a very good thing, and good two way centers like Stepan and Anisimov don’t grow on trees.

If the Rangers were to acquire a highly established center like Ryan Getzlaf, then (I’d still be hesitant) it would be OK to trade one of the two. This is also contingent on how management feels J.T. Miller can fit into the organization at some point, and if he can replace one of the two. Miller will probably need another year before he can break into the NHL.

I don’t think this is the summer when either Stepan or Anisimov is traded though. I think eventually one of the two will be traded due to cap constraints, and other players ready to take their spots. For the time being, I think they are both safe unless Sather wants to pull off a crazy move. This time next year though it’s very possible the clock will be ticking for both of these players to see which one has the longer future with the club.

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Tags: Artem Anisimov Derek Stepan Glen Sather J.T. Miller Ryan Getzlaf

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