The Derek Stepan Saga

One of the big question marks at the start of this off season was Derek Stepan, how much do we give him? How long should he get signed for? However, it was only the beginning, so the general consensus seemed to be “Oh it’s fine, Sather will get it done” or, “Stop worrying about it! We have so much time!”

Well now its September, the first pre-season game is less than two weeks away and the first regular season game is less than a month away and now it’s gone from a question mark to a giant throbbing question mark that’s staring us all in the face, especially when you come to realize that forwards Ryan Callahan and Carl Hagelin are going to be out for the pre-season and most of if not all of October and realize that we cannot be missing any more pieces to our puzzle. But I’m not going to get into if Stepan will be signed, I’m not going to switch us to DEFCON 5 and declare Armageddon, I’m sure Sather and the rest of the Rangers brass understand that Stepan needs to be re-signed, what I’m going to say is that Stepan WILL get signed, he WILL get big money, and I’m going to tell you why he deserves big money.

 

Debby Wong-USA TODAY Sports

In the last two years, 23 year old Derek Stepan has become one of the team’s best players, and arguably it’s top center. To compare, Stepan had 44 points in the shortened 2013 regular season, compared to the 42 that Rick Nash had. In the last two campaigns, Stepan has had 95 points, compared to Brad Richards‘ 100 points in his two seasons as a Ranger. In another comparison, John Tavares, the star of the New York Islanders had 47 points in the 2013 shortened season and was nominated for the Hart Trophy. Am I saying that Derek Stepan should’ve been in consideration for the Hart Trophy? Yes, he had the most points on a Stanley Cup contending team and was the team’s number one center at just 23 years old.

Now that we’ve got all the facts and stats, there’s a rumor floating around that Derek Stepan is asking for a deal similar to the one that we saw defenseman Ryan McDonagh get, and although with our current cap issues we can’t give him that deal right now, I think we should give him a bridge deal now, and next season give him a long term McDonagh-like contract, and if it’s still a question, he absolutely deserves it.

Topics: Derek Stepan, National Hockey League, New York Rangers

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  • Centerman

    He should sign a one year contract. 2 years would obviously give him one more year but even if he signs an extension after this season, he still would have to play out the second year at what ever they give him. 1 year 2.5 mil and stick it to them next season.

  • Dave Young

    What would you pay for a Center that has put up 140 points over the last 3 seasons, hasn’t missed a game, is a +42 over those 3 years, lead the team in scoring last year in the regular season and in the playoffs?
    Are you kidding me? His numbers are on par with other Centers in the league that make over $5 mil per season. Next year won’t be any easier when you have to sign Hank, Cally, and Girardi. Brian Boyle better start looking for a home in Winnipeg since he’ll be getting a one-way bus ticket next April.

    • Centerman

      Why Winnipeg? And Stepan didn’t lead the Rangers in scoring last year. Goals maybe.

      • Dave Young

        Check the stat sheet Centerman. Stepan lead the team in scoring. Show him the love. Get him signed.
        Why Winnipeg? Because Winnepeg sucks.

        • Centerman

          You’re preaching to the quire with Stepan. He led the team in scoring during the regular season not the playoffs. He led the team in Goals with 4 but Brassard led the Rangers in points during the playoffs with 12. Next was Zucarello with 7. You don’t have to sell me on Stepan, I’m a huge fan. He’s the inspiration behind my handle. My Twitter handle is actually Centerman21 but it fit here in short so I went with it. Named after Stepan21.
          I think he earned the contract in whatever he is asking within reason of course. Sather actually has about 8 mil to spend on Stepan if you add the 4.1 mil in Bonus Cushion teams are allowed. Look at the Iginla contract.
          1.8 salary + 4.2 performance bonuses=6 mil but only 1.8 goes against the salary cap. That’s how they fit that contract in their spending in Boston. Sather could do the same but he’s trying to use the system to get Stepan as cheaply as possible. He should sign 1 year and hit them next year. If he goes for the 2 years he can negotiate an extension at seasons end but he still has to play out the other year for beans. He’s an RFA for 4 more seasons so he’s NY Ranger property unless they trade him. He has no leverage.