There is approximately one big name left on the free agent market, and that name is Phoenix Coyotes' captain Shane Doan. So it's not surprising that most of the rumors are running through Doan. And it's also no surprising that the New York Rangers are mentioned in nearly all of these rumors.
Such is the way of a big market team in the media capital of the world.
Larry Brooks wrote his weekly column Sunday, and mentioned the Rangers' chances at getting Doan. From his article:
Doan, who understandably wants this to be the last move he makes, is believed to have narrowed his sights on Manhattan, Pittsburgh and Vancouver. It's unclear if Rangers general manager Glen Sather is willing to go four years, but if he does, Doan is more likely than not to become a Blueshirt.
Join me after the jump for more.
They key in that excerpt is the word "unclear." It's unclear if Sather is willing to go four years. Hopefully the reality is unlikely or even impossible.
Sather simply can't afford to give a four-year contract which would fall under the over 35 clause, meaning that every dollar remains on the cap until the deal runs its course. The Rangers have too much youth they need to take care of in the coming years. Derek Stepan, Ryan McDonagh and Carl Hagelin are the names that Sather will have to bring back at the end of next season.
Chris Kreider (RFA), Henrik Lundqvist, Ryan Callahan, Dan Girardi and Marian Gaborik (all UFAs) highlight the list two years from now. Taking on Doan's contract would put all of those signings at risk.
Glen Sather did a brilliant job not getting rid of the Rangers' young core in order to land Rick Nash, so why give them up to take on Doan? Doan might solve a small problem -- bottom six depth and scoring -- but so would Jason Arnott (17 goals), a player who would come much cheaper, too.
So what would be the point of Doan? To bring in a bigger name to play on the third line? To get another guy who knows what it takes to win? I get that you can't have enough of those guys on a squad, but you can have enough of those guys if they start to impact the team's future. That's exactly what Doan would do if he came to the team in a four-year deal. That's exactly what the Rangers should avoid.
If he takes a two-year, discounted deal, then say yes. But if he says no, then Sather needs to say no too.