Insiders consider potential Rangers trade candidates

The New York Rangers may well be in a position to add more assets to their rebuilding effort.

There have been two Rangers-centric mentions worth noting in the past few days.

On Hockey Night in Canada’s Saturday Headlines segment, Kevin Hayes was brought up by Ron MacLean to Nick Kypreos.

“He’s getting a lot of attention early, in terms of NHL scouts,” noted Kypreos. “It’s no secret right now he’s already making $5 million with the New York Rangers, and he’s going to price himself out as he becomes an unrestricted free agent, especially when it comes to the New York Rangers’ rebuild. So he’s going to get a lot of attention early here.

“We spoke in the pregame about the Winnipeg Jets never really replacing a guy like Stastny with the left-handed shot. Perhaps he’s a guy that Winnipeg could look at. I don’t believe for one second it would upset the bulk of their roster. I think you’re looking at a draft pick or a prospect to get a guy like Hayes.

“But no question a lot of teams have interest in this guy.”

Hayes signed a one-year, $5.175 million contract at the end of July as a restricted free agent, and will can become an unrestricted free agent this summer.

Whether or not the Jets have interest in acquiring Hayes remains to be seen, but it is worth pointing out at least that Bob McKenzie recently said, “The Winnipeg Jets think they can win a Stanley Cup this year,” in relation to his point that he didn’t believe that Kevin Cheveldayoff would move Tyler Myers before the trade deadline “because it’s all hands on deck.” This is a team that will be adding pieces.

The Hayes report complements another Rangers-related mention from Kypreos’s colleague, Elliotte Friedman, from Friday on Calgary radio.

“I did have a couple of guys tell me yesterday that they say there’s probably more trade talks than normal for the beginning of this year,” noted Friedman. “It takes two to tango obviously, but it sounds like there is the possibility at least of that.

“The Rangers, I think people are going to look at them. Namestnikov the center, he’s out there. And apparently the Rangers, as long as you’re not asking about their young core players, they’re a team that’s willing to listen.”

Namestnikov is in the first season of a two-year, $8 million contract, at the conclusion of which he’ll be an unrestricted free agent.

Contract-related info via CapFriendly