Mats Zuccarello has become one of, if not the Rangers’ most important forwards. Zuccarello is a leader on and off the ice, a skilled player, and happens to be a fierce competitor.
Zuccarello has become a consistent 55 to 60 point player. Despite shooting at a 7.9 shooting percentage, which is three percent lower than his career average of 10.9, Zuccarello still managed to finish the season with 59 points. Zuccarello posted a new career high in assists, with 44, this past season.
Basically, there is a good possibility that Zuccarello could post 70 or more points in the 2017-18 season.
It would be extremely hard for the Rangers to replace his scoring. And even if the Rangers were able to find a player who can score more points than Zuccarello, their cap hit would be significantly higher than Zuccarello’s (provided that they are not on an Entry Level Contract).
Zuccarello is set to make $4.5 million for the next two seasons. This team friendly deal is a steal for the Rangers. Any player the Rangers could try and bring in to replace him would likely have a cap hit that is higher than six million dollars.
This makes Zuccarello incredibly irreplaceable. Trading him would be irresponsible and would likely lead to the Rangers regressing next season. Simply put, the Rangers should need the other team to move the Heavens and Earth before they even consider thinking about trading Zuccarello.