Phil Posted April 8, 2019 Share Posted April 8, 2019 Only potential tampering penalties prevented Gorton from shouting out the name ?Artemi Panarin,? the impending free-agent winger from Columbus who will be the Blueshirts? primary target on July 1 and who can be expected to command at least $11 million per season on a seven-year deal. And likely that only the same threat of penalty kept Gorton from blurting out ?Kevin Hayes,? the center who could well be in line for a free-agent return to New York if the numbers align. Be sure of this: No one expects the process to speed up with sophomores Filip Chytil, Brett Howden and Lias Andersson lining up down the middle behind legit No. 1 Mika Zibanejad. Throwing money at Panarin does not guarantee that he will accept. Florida, long expected to be a major bidder in the auction, not only has the beach, the weather and no state tax to offer, the Panthers may be on the verge of hiring Joel Quenneville, who coached Panarin in his first two years in the league with Chicago and was livid when informed the Breadman had been traded to Columbus for Brandon Saad. Before Panarin, though, Gorton and the powers that be will have to declare one way or the other on Chris Kreider, a formidable veteran presence in the room who scored 24 goals over the first 52 games and finished with 28. The Rangers were tied for the eighth-lowest scoring team in the league, so Kreider?s production is not easily dismissed. But Kreider is poised to enter the final year of his contract and is eligible for a contract extension come July 1. If management does not believe Kreider is consistently dependable enough to merit a deal that would likely come in at six years for around $6.5 million per year and take Kreider through his age 34 season, then it is incumbent upon Gorton to move the winger prior to the draft instead of bringing him back as a rental property waiting to be traded at the deadline. https://nypost.com/2019/04/08/rangers-see-offseason-as-the-perfect-time-to-speed-up-their-rebuild/?utm_source=twitter_sitebuttons&utm_medium=site%20buttons&utm_campaign=site%20buttons Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...
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