Free Agency Insanity Already?

The Rangers were just eliminated Friday night and the free agency insanity has already begun with rumors all over the place today.

And of course it starts with Mr. Nash, as Arthur Staple at Newsday says…

“A package beginning with Brandon Dubinsky, defense prospect Dylan McIlrath and the 28th pick in the June 22 draft could be enough to entice the Blue Jackets to surrender Nash.”

…if the Blue Jackets would except that package, Sather better drive Dubinsky & McIlrath to Columbus himself. Having said that, after seeing Howson’s (Columbus GM) huge request of Kreider, Stepan or Hagelin and McD or Del Zotto at the trade deadline, I doubt very much this would get it done.

Staple adds that if Sather can’t work out a deal with Columbus, he has the cap space to go after prized off-season free agent Zach Parise as well as King’s Conference Final’s hero Dustin Penner (7g, 10a).

…it’s obvious that Parise would fit in perfectly with the Rangers, but I’m not convinced he wants to come here.

…as far as Penner goes, he had an atrocious regular season, but will likely be looking for a big pay day this off-season based on playoff performance. He has bust written all over him, so let’s hope Sather is completely rehabilitated from his previous free spending self and doesn’t over-pay to bring him in.

Meanwhile Steve Zipay at Newsday notes that the Rangers have eight unrestricted free agents, including Martin Biron, Ruslan Fedotenko and Brandon Prust, and restricted free agents Michael Del Zotto and Anton Stralman.

…to be honest, I’d bring them all back. Yes, Del Zotto had a rough end to the playoffs, but the potential is still there and remember he’s just 21-years old.

…after not liking the Stralman signing at first, I really was impressed with his overall season. However, with Erixon likely pushing for a spot on the roster in camp, there might not be a spot for him.

Speaking of re-signing their own free agents, Larry Brooks at the New York Post says the Rangers could have trouble re-signing Prust, who earned $800,000 per under his expiring contract, if his priority is in maximizing his income rather than remaining in New York.

…i think Prust is in love with the city of New York and will do all he can to stay here. And the feeling should be mutual from the Rangers towards the rugged winger.

Finally, Brooks says that the Rangers will be looking to sign Del Zotto to a multi-year deal this offseason.

…would love to hear your thoughts in the comments section on all these rumors.

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