When we talk about the shortcomings of the New York Rangers, a lot of people will point to the right wing and their poor defense. While there are solutions to both problems in development, the Rangers are trying to win the Stanley Cup right now. They could wait for the future, but then players like Mika Zibanejad, Chris Kreider, Artemi Panarin, and Vincent Trocheck will not be at their best.
So how can the Rangers get a player that will help them now without ruining their chances for the future? Well, on the back end, there is someone that would make the roster stronger. Jakob Chychrun has wanted out of the Arizona Coyotes organization for a while now and the Rangers have a lot of the pieces they would need to pull Chychrun out of the desert without worrying about overpaying.
Arizona reportedly wants 2 1sts round picks and a young player. This isn’t to say that they want a young player like Alexis Lafreniere or Kaapo Kakko. but if the Rangers were to offer someone like Vitali Kravtsov who has at points bounced around the lineup, they could potentially land a defenseman that would be a core part of this team for the coming seasons.
Perhaps you’re worried that Chychrun would block the development path of someone like Zachary Jones. Chychrun can play both sides and would be able to take the place of someone like Trouba if the Rangers opted to move the $8 million contract this summer. For the New York Rangers, this is a deal that can make a lot of sense.
With the Arizona Coyotes defenceman making $4.6 million against the cap this year, next year, and during the 2024 to 25 season this is a player that can grow with the current core and progress in his career with the group the Rangers have assembled. Not to mention that this player can play both sides of a defense pairing which makes him extremely flexible and a strong candidate to lead the 2nd pairing.
He is also a very capable quarterback for the second power-play unit this is a player that could give another Gear to a power play that was terrifying last season. If the Rangers’ defense can get a little stronger in combination with Igor getting hot at the right time it could give the Rangers the basis to build a strong postseason performance. So it leads to the question, what is the right price for Chychrun?
Well, if the Coyotes say they want the two first the Rangers have possession of ahead of this year’s draft (having Dallas’ first from the Nils Lundkvist saga), then there are only the fine details to be worked out. Not to mention, Chychrun would fit nicely into the Rangers’ deadline available cap space. If the Rangers were to pull the trigger at this deadline and decide they wanted to move him in the summer, the vast interest would still be there.
In the long term, this makes sense for the Rangers. What doesn’t make sense is that you’re likely playing Chychrun on the third pairing alongside Braden Schneider. While this allows the roster more flexibility, it does create a question as to how much is it worth to have such a significant upgrade to the third pairing of a team. Chychrun is not a rental, but it would force the Rangers over a barrel with their cap situation moving forward.
Just the idea of a defensive unit that reads something like:
K’Andre Miller – Adam Fox
Jakob Chychrun – Braden Schneider
Ryan Lindgren – Jacob Trouba
That six-man unit could compete with any team in the NHL. We’ll see what happens at the trade deadline, but this seems to me like it could be a good idea. If you think I’m crazy, let me know below. If you have reservations or want to pitch different ideas, I’ll be sure to read them. Just a little bit of fun to get you warmed up for the game tonight.