After confirming the long-rumored arrival of John Davidson to succeed Glen Sather as team President, the Rangers have reportedly made a player signing to cap off the day. Renaud Lavoie of TVA Sports is reporting that the team has agreed to terms on a two year entry level contract with defensive prospect Yegor Rykov:
Yegor Rykov signed a two year deal (entry level contract) with the @NYRangers with a European Clause if he wants to go back in the KHL. He played for Sochi last season. Drafted in 5th round in 2016 by the #NYR— Renaud Lavoie (@renlavoietva) May 18, 2019
Rykov, who turned 22 on April 14th, was acquired from the New Jersey Devils as part of the return package for Michael Grabner leading up to the 2018 trade deadline. Rykov was originally a 5th round selection of the Devils back in 2016, and has spent the last three seasons in the KHL. Rykov skated for SKA St. Petersburg from 2016-18 and received minimal ice time, but was loaned to HC Sochi for the 2018-19 campaign and was among the teams leaders in time on ice.
The contract contains a KHL out-clause should Rykov fail to break camp on Broadway, and with the current logjam of defenders on New York’s blue line, it wouldn’t be a surprise to see Rykov end up spending this season overseas.
Rykov, a left handed shot, will join the likes of Brady Skjei, Marc Staal, and Brendan Smith as LHD’s under contract for next season, and adds more fuel to the fire that the Rangers will look to move on from at least one of their current NHL defenseman. Staal, Smith, and right handed Kevin Shattenkirk have all been rumored to be on the chopping block, so it would be a shock to see that trio of veteran defenders return to New York next season.
We’ll update this post as more information comes out. Thoughts on Rykov’s signing?