Let me start off this article by saying that the likelihood of this happening is not too good. However, if you think about it, the Rangers offering a contract to Zach Parise would make sense in many ways.
Parise is a restricted free agent, but with the Devils having trouble with the salary cap, signing Parise is much more difficult than it seems.
First, let's go over the restricted free agent rules. The Devils or Parise can offer to settle the dispute in arbitration at any time. If the Devils offer Parise a qualifying offer, they are the only ones who can negotiate with Parise, who can sign before Dec. 1 or not play the season.
So the Devils have all the power right now.
The Devils have not offered a qualifying offer to Parise (as far as I know), so any team can offer him a contract, which Parise can sign. The contract would then be sent to the Devils who can match the offer and retain the rights to Parise.
The Devils have 17 players signed and $9 million free. They would have to maneuver to keep Parise and prepare for Brodeur's free agency next year. Brodeur will be kept by the Devils because of his legacy, and they will overpay for him.
The Devils would never ever trade Parise to the Rangers, so that is not a possibility.
This is where the Rangers come in. The Rangers can win this situation in many ways.
First, let's say the Rangers offer him a deal worth $6.5 million, a relatively fair deal. If Parise signs, the Devils would have a tough choice to make. They could let him walk to their cross-river rivals or take the salary cap hit and maneuver around it.
Either way, the Rangers severely weaken the Devils financially or with their squad.
Another situation for the Rangers is avoiding signing Brad Richards. I have long been an advocate of staying away from Richards because of his age and demands financially. No doubt Richards is a top tier player, and his services would be great for the Rangers for the right price.
But offering a 31-year-old a long term contract for $7-$8 million a year is not wise (Sather will do it though). Parise is going to be 27 and would be about the same price as Richards.
Parise would be going through his prime with the Rangers. He has proven himself with his heroics in the Olympics as well as playing for the Devils.
Now this is where the real fun begins. The Rangers will still be in need of a number one center. So since we have a plethora of young defenseman and some spare pieces, let's make a deal for...Paul Stastny.
Hear me out before you think I'm ridiculous (I spent all day thinking about this and making sure it worked).
Now the Avalanche are preparing for the future. However, they are going to need some salary cap to meet the minimum, so this is the deal.
To NYR- Paul Stastny
To Col- Dan Girardi, Artem Anisimov and a first-round pick
Dan Girardi has a $3.325 million salary cap hit, while Stastny has a $6.5 million cap hit, so the Avalanche now have $3 million to get another player. Anisimov will be replaceable as you will see in a minute, and he is a youthful player on the rise.
The first-round pick is what Colorado is most interested in. This may be too little for Stastny at which point I would have no problem giving up Del Zotto to sweeten the pot.
Now for the Rangers, let us go over their financial situation. They will have to buy out Drury, Wolski and Avery. Drury's cap hit will be around $3 million while Wolski and Avery will be around $1 million.
Dubinsky and Callahan need new contracts, so I put them in for $4 million each, which I think is fair. Boyle needs to be re-signed so I put him down for $2 million. The Rangers have to sign a third goalie, so put that down for $1 million maximum.
Michael Sauer also has to be re-signed so I gave him $1.5 million after making around $800,000 this year. So this is the way I picture the four lines for the Ranges and the three defensive pairings, along with cap hits.
First- Gaborik ($7.5 mill) Stastny ($6.5 mill) Parise ($6.5 mill)=$21.5 mill
Second- Callahan ($4 mill) Stepan ($875,000) Dubinsky ($4 mill)= $7,875,000
Third- (insert prospect or signee) Boyle ($2 mill) Prust ($825,000)= $2,825,000+
Fourth- Christenson ($925,000) Kreider ($1 mill) Grachev ($816,000)=$2.7 mill
First- Staal ($ 4 mill) Del Zotto (if not traded, $1 mill)=$5 mill
Second- McDonagh ($ 1.3 mill) Sauer ($1.5 mill)=$2.8 mill
Third- Erixon ($1.5 mill) (insert prospect or signee)= $1.5 mill+
Goalie- Lundqvist ($6.7 mill) Biron ($1 mill) 3rd string ($1 mill)=$8.7 mill
So that equals $52.9 million of cap room in players. Plus the buy outs of Drury, Avery and Wolski is an additional $5 million which brings it up to $58 million.
The cap is supposed to raise to $62.2 million according to the New York Post. So this leaves around $4 million to sign three players (two skaters, one scratch). With the youth, just bring up some kids and let them play.
The Rangers will be flirting with the salary cap line and a lot of factors will come into play, but I say why not? A team like that would compete in the Eastern Conference.
This is Lundqvist's time, and the Rangers need to step up for him. It is possible although the odds are not likely. I am calling on Glen Sather to at least give it a try. When the worst situation is you screw the Devils financially for the next five years, that will make any Ranger fan smile.
By the way, as an American and watching Parise's tying goal, that brings me chills. Best hockey game I've ever watched.
Feel free to argue or comment and thanks for the read.
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