The Latest on Kovalchuk and the Rangers

And we’re out! or so we thought. Yesterday, Sports-Express writer Igor Eronko tweeted that the Rangers were out of the Ilya Kovalchuk sweepstakes. Larry Brooks of the New York Post quickly refuted that claim:

With the tweetstorm that followed, it got me thinking of just what a Kovalchuk trade with the Rangers might look like. Would the price be higher just because they’re the Rangers? Who would the trade revolve around and just what would the Devils want from the Rangers in a Kovalchuk trade?

The Devils need help all over and the Rangers due to their depth could help them in some areas. Forget about sending them defensive help because that’s one area we can’t afford to lose any talent in but as for our forward group, there could be some players that the Rangers could afford to look at trading. A further complication of a possible Kovalchuk trade is the looming expansion draft where a player the Rangers could think about trading may get claimed by the Vegas Golden Knights.

With all that being said just which of our forwards would be good to build a package around for Kovalchuk? Brooks believes that Oscar Lindberg would be a “legitimate candidate for a top-six role in New Jersey.” Lindberg is a fantastic player who I feel could even play a top six role for the blueshirts if need be. There’s some nights where he looks preferable to Kevin Hayes or Derek Stepan. Of course there would need to be more added to this deal, possibly some combination of picks or prospects. Maybe the Rangers throw in someone like Ryan Gropp to sweeten the pot. One of the few big reasons this trade may never come to fruition though is that Lindberg may get claimed in the expansion draft.

Could Ray Shero also end up charging the Rangers more simply because they are the Rangers? Fans would say yes but at the end of the day hockey is a business and the Devils and Rangers are simply two teams that play in close proximity. The rivalry is there yes there’s no denying that but you have to believe if a trade can be struck that benefits both teams then there’s no reason Gorton and Shero won’t do business. Would the Devils prefer not to trade within the division and have Kovalchuk hurt them? Sure but if the Rangers give them the best deal there’s a possibility it could happen.

With that being said, just where will Ilya Kovalchuk end up if he dosen’t come to the Rangers? According to Brooks “more than half a dozen” teams were and possibly still are interested in acquiring the former Rocket Richard trophy winner. Those teams are believed to include the Toronto Maple Leafs, the San Jose Sharks and the St. Louis Blues. All three of those teams have the assets and reasons to trade for Kovalchuk. This saga may drag on for awhile but as always Fulltilt will have the latest for you all whenever news is released.


  • This trade will probably happen after the expansion draft. Also trade could have a lot of moving parts as if he signs, and how far the Rangers go in the playoffs

    • From Elliot Friedman :There are a lot of ties to Lindy Ruff in New York. Arniel played with him from 1986-89. Assistant GM Jim Schoenfeld was a teammate from 1979-81. Chris Drury, who just added the AHL Hartford GM title to his portfolio, was coached by Ruff from 2003-07. With those connections, it’s not a surprise to hear rumblings that Ruff was contacted by the Rangers about joining Alain Vigneault’s staff. I’m not sure where this stands right now, but it sounds like it was with the idea of making the group stronger, not forcing Vigneault to look over his shoulder.

  • Are you people kidding me! I have had enough of trading young players and picks for older players. In my 55+ years as a Ranger fan I’m sick of it. I don’t care what he’s like or what he has left. I SAY NO WAY! I want to get younger. We’ve been hearing and seeing Sather do this for years. Trade dead line moves for 5 years and nothing but lost draft pics. and young players gone off our roster.
    If you want to write a good article try one on a G.M./ President of a team who’s won nothing for 18 years and still has his job. Why don’t I see anyone trashing Sather like he deserves? What other guy would get away with that. L.A. Kings won 2 cups in the last few years and their G.M. and coach are gone! Dolan is an idiot who thinks this is the Sather from the 1980’s Edmonton teams.

  • Johnny Red,
    I go back just a bit further than you as a Ranger fan—I just hit 60 years!!
    You have got it absolutely RIGHT!!!! There is NO teacher like experience, and by now, management should know better! Allow me to re-post what I said only a couple of days ago., regarding trading for an over the hill old player. ” Judging by MANY past post seasons, their record stinks on these deals. I’m scared to death to see what they wind up doing!!!!
    My hope is they GO YOUNG!!!!!! Maybe will cost us one season till the kids start to play NHL caliber defense, but the upside is for many more seasons at that level! Paying an outrageous price for a 28 year old pretty much guarantees that they will be in the same boat in 3-4 years that they are in now”.
    I never mentioned Sather—-but based on your thoroughly accurate statement, You really hit the nail on the head!! Any other business would have fired him for incompetence long ago!!! Add another detriment to Sather– once he has a player, he waits till they completely disintegrate before he gets rid of them, so the Rangers lose three ways ends–they give too much to get them, the don’t get any performance from them while they’re a Ranger, and the get NOTHING for them when they trade them away!!! I personally think that those cigars he loves so much have turned him into a cretin!
    But, as long as the Garden is sold out and there’s a waiting list to get in, there’s very little chance of him being let go. Remember, the ONE THING that is MORE important than ANYTHING else is M O N E Y !!!! The absolute bottom line is– as long as the big guys line their pockets, winning and/or losing games, or winning the Stanley Cup is purely secondary!!!

    • I hear you I’m 55 years old too and I grew up in the stairwells of Madison Square Garden in the 70s but in order to get rid of overage bad contracts you have to entice with the couple young kids so other teams will take him . The really last Youth movement we ever had was 1976 under John Ferguson

  • Sather wouldve been gone when he traded Dubi and Anisimov for Gaborik!! You guys remember that trade im sure the trade that started the deterioration of the team!! Yes Gabs had 2 good seasons with us but you hit him and its like breaking glass!! If we have to trade for a dman i say give up JT Miller and Staal for either Trouba or the other top dman their looking at!! Sather is responsible for MANY bad contracts dating back to Gomez and Drury years!! Not to mention the hideous trade that brought us an atrocious contract with Nash!! We again gave up youth to get him and where did it get us?? We gave up what 5 or 6 good kids for those 2 schmos!! ITS TIME TO KEEP OUR KIDS AND BUILD WITHIN!! Stop the bs of trading our top picks for flops or overrated players!! If I was Gorton or AV id have the goalie coach help Skapski with his game because he showed great confidence and play when he played with us in ’14-’15!!

We would love your thoughts! Comment Please!