New York Rangers: Predicting changes on defense

Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports
Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports /
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Mandatory Credit: Eric Bolte-USA TODAY Sports
Mandatory Credit: Eric Bolte-USA TODAY Sports /

Tim Haggerty-

Ryan McDonagh-Kevin Shattenkirk

Brady Skjei-Brendan Smith

Marc Staal-Kevin Klein

First thought, I think the Rangers will doing something about Girardi.

Trading him or taking him in the expansion draft seems unreasonable from the perspective of the buyer. Buying him out will likely be the route.

Shattenkirk will sign on a deal in the $6.0 million range over five years. Smith will sign for $3.5 million over three years to round out the group.

Alain Vigneault will likely hold Clendening and other younger defenseman out of the regular lineup, unfortunately.

This core could get shoken up at the trade deadline if sellers emerge. Like last year, this defense will be the focus of improvement throughout the year. It will be interesting to watch it unfold throughout the year.