Ryan McDonagh’s name has been involved in all kinds of trade rumors given the fact that the New York Rangers recently released a letter stating intentions to rebuild. The letter include a line that could have been referring to a player such as McDonagh:
“This may mean we lose some familiar faces, guys we all care about and respect.”
Given his status as the Rangers’ top defender and having a bargain cap hit of $4.7 million dollars through next season, it wouldn’t be surprising to see him dealt between now and the first night of the draft.
McDonagh has missed the last three games with an upper-body injury, and he remains day-to-day.
Kreider could be two weeks or a month away, Vigneault not sure. Has to get back in game shape. Buchnevich probably will practice with a contact jersey Friday and then they'll determine his availability. McDonagh day-to-day. #Rangers— Brian Heyman (@bheyman99) February 14, 2018
The caution with McDonagh could be so he heals up 100%, or it could be they don’t want a further injury to prevent him from being traded.
While the Rangers aren’t going to give him away, nor do they need to make a decision at this point, it appears that the team is closer to trading him than keeping him long term. Pierre LeBrun was on TSN and revealed that he’s submitted his list of the 10 teams he would not join via trade.
Ryan McDonagh has reportedly submitted his list of ten teams he will not allow the Rangers to trade him to. pic.twitter.com/Y5m6XKtpmT— Tom Urtz Jr. (@TomUrtzJr) February 15, 2018
This means the Rangers now have a list of 20 teams in which they could theoretically deal McDonagh too. By no means are they in a rush to do so, as LeBrun pointed out. It is a big decision, and the Rangers need to make sure they are getting appropriate value.
However, if a team were to step up and present a sizable offer, similar to the way the Rangers went out and made a big offer to the Arizona Coyotes for Keith Yandle, they would definitely consider it according to LeBrun.
He additionally confirmed that the Boston Bruins and Tampa Bay Lightning, both contending for first in the Atlantic division, do have some level of interest in the Rangers’ captain. It had previously been reported on Hockey Night in Canada by Elliotte Friedman.
The level of interest at this point is unknown, as is whether or not either team would get involved in a bidding war.
What makes things interesting is McDonagh is part of a group of defenders all set to hit free agency at the same time. McDonagh, Drew Doughty, Oliver Ekman-Larsson and Erik Karlsson are all slated to become UFAs on July 1, 2019. If McDonagh were to get traded it could really shake up the market.
It is possible that a team trading for McDonagh wants to sign him to a new deal, and that would mean one less option for other teams to consider in free agency. At this time of year things can change at the drop of a dime, but the major news here is McDonagh formally submitted his list.
At this time of year teams are going to push off rumors and keep things close to the chest, but LeBrun’s reporting of the events are very similar to how the Rangers started the process with Nash. There were rumors about Rick Nash too, but things got serious once the Rangers asked him for the teams on his no-trade list.
Nash spoke about his situation on MSG prior to the Rangers’ matchup vs. the Dallas Stars after that story broke. It will be interesting to see if the question is raised when the Rangers take on the New York Islanders on Thursday.