Disclaimer: Before we even get started I am well aware Marian is our best offensive player on a team that has a true dearth of offensive talent on it right now. This is not a desire to trade Gaborik for the sake of trading him but looking to possibly capitalize on a team failing to be able to attract a big name FA for multiple years now. Also aware that Gabby has a no-trade clause he would have to waive.
The number of problems this team has are vast and scoring heads the lists as much as any of the others except maybe for salary cap issues. Gaborik last year was all that we could have hoped for and then some with his 44G 42A first season here and managing to play 76 games. The problem I have is I dont see the numbers holding up, especially the games played over the course of the next 4 years of this deal. I can certainly see him being a 30-40 goal, but more like the 60-70 points he normally gets vs the 86 he had last season. With this team a guy who can score even 30 and put up 65 points is certainly nothing to sneeze at, but I am wondering if selling high on him might not be the best play. In that though I am not talking about trading him just to deal him, but looking to take advantage of a team like LA who has tried for the last 2-3 seasons to lure a goal scorer there in the likes of Hossa, Gabby, Kovy but been unsuccessful. If the Rangers could get a package like Wayne Simmonds, Brayden Schenn and something else (Bernier hopefully) then I would have to take that and look at the overall impact it would have on the club. Personally I love Simmonds and Schenn as Simmonds is a bigger/better version of what many want Cally to be up to maybe a 60 pt guy, Schenn is a version of Mike Richards and Bernier would be a legit backup/trade chip. I dont think LA would make that kind of deal for Gabby alone, but if we gave them Girardi maybe they would.
This kind of move no doubt hurts us for the upcoming year, but we get 3 top notch young pieces to go with our own ones and conceivably shave 10 mil off the cap this season and down the line, gives plenty of space to sign Staal, and with the pack of prospects you now possess you can either trade pieces or think about sacrificing future picks for other players. For those of who want to you could replace Gabby's production with Kovy or just save the money and build later. If you basically swap Gabby for Kovy salary wise we have still added 3 prime pieces to add in our move forward. Have at it.