NHL Rumors: Rangers Must Do Whatever It Takes to Land Rick Nash
According to Larry Brooks of the New York Post, Rangers General Manager Glen Sather is, once again, hot on the trail for Nash's services.
For the second time in four months, the Rangers are engaged in a high-speed pursuit of Rick Nash, sources have confirmed. Just as was the case during the chase leading up to the Feb. 27 trade deadline, general manager Glen Sather remains unconcerned about the cap implications of the Columbus winger’s contract that runs through 2017-18 at an annual $7.8 million charge that is exceeded in the NHL by only Alex Ovechkin, Evgeni Malkin, Sidney Crosby and Eric Staal.
Nash's $7.8 million cap hit is a cause for concern, but it is minimized because of his consistent production. He has scored 30-plus goals in seven of his nine NHL seasons, and that's with a subpar Columbus organization.
Granted, the Rangers will have to give up a lot. Columbus General Manager Scott Howson, according to Brooks' New York Post article, was throwing names like Brandon Dubinsky, Carl Hagelin, Derek Stepan, Chris Kreider and Michael Del Zotto around in February.
I understand the Rangers' reluctance to part ways with any of those players, but their poor offensive showing in the Stanley Cup playoffs should change their tone.
Nash could move to the Big Apple and shrivel under the city's bright lights. It's happened to many athletes in every sport, but Sather has to try. At this point, it is worth the risk.
He's a dynamic talent. Power forwards with his skill set do not grow on trees. He is a dominant goal scorer with above-average passing ability and a definite physical quality to his game.
The Rangers have a very good core of young players.
Dubinsky and Ryan Callahan are capable goal scorers, but not go-to guys. Marian Gaborik is, but has well-documented injury issues. Brad Richards is a great player but incapable of doing it alone.
New York won many games behind the game's best goaltender.
Henrik Lundqvist stood on his head routinely. The Rangers defense is stalwart, but in the end, you have to be able to score goals.
Defense only gets you so far.
Giving up a sizable package for a player with Nash's price tag will always be greeted with reluctance. In this case, the Rangers must do whatever it takes to make it happen.
If the Rangers want to get over the hump, they need a No. 1 scoring option. Nash may be expensive, but he's undoubtedly a top option.
He toiled in Columbus for eight long years. His production will increase in New York with a better supporting cast and the Rangers will remain on top of the Eastern Conference.
Winning requires sacrifice. Sather needs to understand that before another team does.
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