April 18, 2021; Newark, New Jersey, USA; New York Rangers right wing Vitali Kravtsov (74) celebrates his goal with center Kevin Rooney (17) against New Jersey Devils goalkeeper Mackenzie Blackwood (29) in the first period at Prudential Center. Mandatory Credit: Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports
The New York Rangers will swap disgruntled customer Vitali Kravtsov at some point this season or at the NHL Draft.
The Montreal Canadiens are shaking and have just cleaned house and hired former Blueshirts GM Jeff Gorton to run hockey ops. Since the Habs need to rebuild the shelves and look at a possible rebuild, many have thought he would come and knock on the Rangers door for Kravtsov.
Jeff Gorton will be smart and patient
Today, the Canadiens introduced Gorton to the media. He talked about his need to assess what he has at the moment before making any moves. His first order is to hire a GM, which he said will most likely happen after Christmas. Gorton also talked about building an analytics department and improving player development.
He also gave his head coach, Dominique Ducharme, a vote of confidence by declaring he would not make a change of coach this season. That cannot be said for some of the veterans, or those with long-term contracts on the list, as a rebuild is under consideration.
When it comes to rebuilding the shelves, it would not surprise me or anyone else that he will engage with Chris Drury at some point. Many believe that with Montreal’s previous interest in Kravtsov, which Gorton met ninth overall in 2018, this is his most likely destination.
Forever Blueshirts has learned that this is not the case. What was made clear to me is that Gorton would consider the deal if it were at a reduced price. Remember, Gorton knows more details about what happened between Kravrtsov, Chris Drury and the Rangers organization than anyone else.
It was also conveyed to me that Gorton would probably be more interested in acquiring some of the defenders he appointed as Zac Jones, Braden Schneider and Matthew Robertson before considering Kravtsov.
Vitali, 21, is currently doing well for Traktor in the KHL with 6 points in 9 matches.
Other Rangers rumors
Rangers, as usual, seem to be attached to almost every available player. Two names that have reportedly been linked to Blueshirts are Boston’s Jake DeBrusk and Vancouver’s JT Miller.
“As many as 12 teams, maybe more than 12 teams have already checked in on the Jake DeBrusk situation with the Boston Bruins, but the reality is that the Bruins now need Jake DeBrusk in their lineup,” Dreger explained on TSN Insider Trading. “I would say the New York Rangers are among the teams that have expressed interest. You have the Vancouver Canucks, maybe Montreal, maybe Calgary. Definitely Arizona.”
DeBrusk is 25 and earns $ 3,675M. He’s going to be an RFA this summer, making this a little harder to see for the Rangers to make a deal. This one sounds more like an agent that picks up interest than anything else.
When it comes to JT Miller, there is genuine interest in a reunion. One that I think Drury wants to make happen as soon as possible.
A number of teams have been circling Miller (including one of his old teams, the New York Rangers) in the midst of the Canucks’ disastrous season, although it appears that GM Jim Benning does not have the full autonomy to make a core-changing trade currently.
Frank Seravalli, DFO
The 28-year-old has one year left on his $ 5.25 million deal before becoming a UFA. He has also been extremely productive with 23 points in 24 games for Vancouver this season. Since joining the Canucks, he has 141 points in 146 competitions. For his career, Miller has posted 378 points in 581 games.
Rangers have some frontrunners at prices
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