Larry Brooks at the New York Post says that the Rangers’ waiver claim of defenseman Roman Hamrlik will make a contract offer to Mats Zuccarello more problematic.
Under league rules, each organization can only have 50 players under contract. Hamrlik represented the Rangers 49th player. Which means if the Blueshirts sign Zuccarello, they could be severely hamstrung at the trade deadline.
Brooks adds that the Rangers currently have approximately $2.75 million of available cap space that equates to approximately $5.96 million of space at the deadline.
Brooks further notes that the club could free an additional $1.25 million by placing Michael Sauer (concussion) on long-term injured reserve.
…not a big deal to me at all if Rangers need to pass on Zuccarello. While he proved last year he could spark the Rangers power play, their recent success proves they don't necessarily need a return of 'The Hobbit' to do it again. Would much rather have the flexibility to bring in a proven center at the deadline than Sather be compromised because of a player who's never consistently proven himself at the NHL level.
…and as much as I'm not a Hamrlik fan, if the choice for the Rangers was between him and Zuccarello for that 49th slot, I'm glad they went with the defensive depth, which you can never have enough of.
…hey Larry, appreciate the unfriendly reminder on Sauer. Depressing.