Dan Riedlhuber , Edmonton Journal
As the powerplay continues to struggle, many are looking for ways that the Rangers can address this need and the need for a sixth defenseman. Ryan Whitney’s name has been thrown around for the past few weeks. Whitney is no different from any other acquisition, and there are pros and cons of trading for Whitney.
- Whitney is in the last year of his deal, and the Rangers can afford his $5.5 million salary and $4 million cap hit. With the cap coming down next year, the Rangers will only be looking for affordable players who do not come with long-term commitments. Whitney is just that.
- Considering he’s been a healthy scratch recently, he should come relatively cheap on the trade market.
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I usually don’t like interrupting game threads, but this deal requires the interruption.
In a blockbuster deal, the Pens get Chris Kunitz and Eric Tandarni from Anaheim in exchange for Ryan Whitney. Kunitz will presumably be placed on the line of Malkin-Crosby-insert winger here. That line scares the bejesus out of me.
The Pens are making a push to make the playoffs with this move. Whitney was movable with Gonchar coming back, Letang on the blueline and Goligoski in the minors. That top forward line rivals the best in the league, and if Fleury can stay solid, they will make the playoffs. If the Rangers keep losing it will be at the expense of the Rangers.
With Whitney going to Anaheim, you can bet your life that Niedermayer or Pronger will be gone before the deadline hits.
Update: In other news, Montreal has traded Steve Begin to Dallas for Doug Janik. This is a minor deal on the scheme of things, but may lead to more for Montreal, as this frees up some salary.
The Fourth Period is reporting on a rumor that the Pens are targeting Lightning winger Martin St. Louis as a trade target, and are willing to part with D Ryan Whitney in return for a top offensive threat.
Breaking down the numbers, Whitney is a $4 million cap hit and is signed through the 2012-2013 season, and St. Louis is a $5.25 million cap hit, signed through the 2010-2011 season. This deal makes sense for both sides really. The Pens have Goligoski in the system, and Letang on the roster. Either can fill the “void” left by Whitney. Meanwhile, the Lightning, probably regretting letting Boyle go, need defense in front of Mike Smith, who has played extremely well considering the circumstances.
The Pens would have to throw in more for St. Louis, probably a 2nd rounder and a mid level prospect, and maybe TB would have to accept a little more salary coming their way, maybe in the form of Pascal Dupis ($1.4 million hit for the next 2 seasons), or Satan (side note: when going to Yahoo Player Profiles, Satan’s ID is #666. Someone had fun with that), who is a $3.5 million hit, but a UFA at the end of the year.
This deal scares me a little. The Rangers, excluding last night, are in free fall, and the Pens are getting Gonchar back this week. A line of St. Louis-Crosby-Malkin scares pretty much anyone, and could do enough to vault the Pens ahead of the Rangers in the standings come April. While knocking the Rangers out of the playoff picture isn’t really probable, it’s not out of the realm of possibility, keep in mind the Penguins currently sit as the 10 seed, 6 points back of the Rangers. They could be the team to knock the Rangers to the 7 or 8 seed, which means a matchup with either Boston or NJ/Washington.