The New York Rangers have been very honest in their plans moving forward as the focus is on the future and young players: a new era in the Big Apple. They have placed many players on the block, notably veteran forward Rick Nash and captain and star defenseman Ryan McDonagh, and the latter has caught the attention of the Boston Bruins.
The Bruins and their general manager Don Sweeney is said to be looking for a boost up front, but most importantly for the addition of a quality defender who can put up some minutes and give a break to veteran captain Zdeno Chara, and rookie Charlie McAvoy, who will get his first taste of the postseason.
McDonagh sounds like the perfect fit for Boston, but the Rangers might either wait for the summer to move the blue liner, or demand quite the hefty return ahead of the trade deadline.
According to Edmonton Journal's Jim Matheson, the Rangers have a targeted young player in mind, and it is not expected to please Bruins management or their fans. Matheson revealed on Friday morning that New York would want Bruins' rookie Jake DeBrusk included in any deal for Ryan McDonagh.
The famous reported adds an ironic point: "Former Oiler GM Sather traded for Jake's dad Louie when he sent Mark Messier to NYR in 1991."
McDonagh has submitted his list of the 10 teams he would not join via trade, and many wonder where Boston stands in the mind of the defender. Larry Brooks of The New York Post did report that the Bruins and Tampa Bay Lightning have shown interest in the Rangers defenseman, whose contract runs through next season.
The question is will the Bruins decide to pull a major move to land McDonagh? After all, Boston can still count on seven legitimate quality six defensemen in Chara, McAvoy, Torey Krug, Brandon Carlo, Matt Grzelcyk, Adam McQuaid and Kevan Miller. Sweeney probably does not feel pressured to decimate his promising prospect crew to address the position ahead of the postseason.
After all, their defenders have done so well this season, they have allowed Boston to be in this position ahead of the deadline as they look to buy and not be desperate sellers.
The Rangers are already expected to demand a huge return on Nash as well, as some NHL insiders have reported that the price tag for the 33-year-old forward could come to "a first-round pick, a top prospect and another lesser player, or prospect or pick in combination with those."
However, one stumbling block in a deal for the Rangers trying to move Nash is his $7.8 million cap hit which is huge for rival teams to take on. The blue Shirts could do a similar move the Ottawa Senators did in the Dion Phaneuf trade and admitted they are willing to retain a healthy portion of that cap hit in order to not only facilitate a deal, but land young players.
But you better believe the Rangers will want as as many young assets that they can get in return, but Boston does not seem keen to send DeBrusk their way.