When news broke that the Rangers inquired about Fedor Tyutin, the rumor mill became very active. Now that news has broken that the Columbus Blue Jackets inquired about Michael Del Zotto, the rumor-mongering exploded. But let’s take a step back for a moment. Both inquiries came when the respective player was a healthy scratch from the lineup. Nothing (that we know of) came from these inquiries. It’s a safe assumption that these inquiries were just tire kicking, and general managers doing their jobs.
But let’s look at the theoretical MDZ trade. First, analyzing what exactly MDZ brings to a lineup. He is a young puck moving defenseman who had a very productive rookie season. Although he is struggling offensively this year, especially on the power play, his defense has been a huge improvement from his -20 rating last season. He has seen his share of criticism this year, with only some of it –the healthy scratch with homework–earned. The fans are unfairly giving him the Tom Poti treatment, which is utterly ridiculous. However, despite that, he is excelling at the defensive portion of his position, and considering he is a defenseman, that’s probably the best route to take. The offense will come, especially considering his skill, once he works out the kinks in his game and gets more adjusted to the defensive aspect of his position.
It would take an awful lot to pry MDZ from the Rangers’ grasp, and probably a severe overpayment. If he were to be traded to Columbus, there are likely a few players that are marked as “untouchable”, such as Derek Brassard and Rick Nash. It is likely that Tyutin would be one of the people coming back. But Tyutin is just a start in a package that would land MDZ in Columbus. Tyutin, as we know, is a left-handed defenseman who plays a physical game. He has been playing in some very defensive systems with Tom Renney and Ken Hitchcock throughout the years, but has been struggling in new head coach Scott Arniel’s system. So much so that he has been a healthy scratch for a few games this year.