The New York Rangers would be wise to pick up unrestricted free agent Kris Versteeg this offseason. His talent and style of play is something that would fit in New York perfectly. There’s also a multitude of other bonuses signing Versteeg comes with. Here are some:
Versteeg is a great fit for the New York Rangers because he possesses all the qualities the team is looking to enhance. He’s young enough at age 31, which fits in with the average age of the team. He’s also got the speed Alain Vigenault likes to use.
In addition, he’s got a right-handed shot, which is something the Rangers don’t nearly have enough. They only have about four right-handed forwards to this point, so adding Versteeg would be of assistance to the team. It would make them more lethal in the long-run.
Why He’s Worth It:
Last season, he was consistent for the Calgary Flames with a great regular season. In 69 games played, he recorded 15 goals and 22 assists for a total of 37 points.
Although the Flames were ousted in four games in the first round of the 2017 Playoffs, Versteeg played well for his team. In those four games, he recorded one goal and three assists.
Another great aspect of Versteeg is that he’s got Cup experience with the Chicago Blackhawks. In 2014, he was with the Blackhawks when they made it to the Western Conference Final.
In 2015, he played 61 games, and he scored 14 goals and added 20 assists for 34 points. His leadership is definitely something that the Rangers need on their roster, especially since they lost Martin St. Louis to retirement.
On top of his quality production, he is also rather inexpensive. That, of course, is a major part of anyone the Rangers will sign this offseason since they barely have any cap room space left.
Versteeg only costs $950K, although there is always a possibility that he’s going to ask for more. Considering how he played this past season, it makes sense that he will make at least $1M going into 2017-2018.
How He Fits In:
He could be featured as right winger on a line with possibly Derek Stepan as the center and Chris Kreider playing left wing. If Vigneault doesn’t want his role to be that big starting out, he would also fit on on a third line with Hayes and Buchnevich as left wing.
The Rangers need a player like Versteeg in their lineup because he provides them with the experience they need. He’s inexpensive, which makes him desirable to Jeff Gorton, and he has the skill that the Rangers need.