As we’ve said all along, the Mats Sundin issue hangs around two questions for the Rangers: whether the center wants to play in New York; whether the Rangers can clear enough cap space to be able to sign him; and then whether Sundin would be willing to accept significantly less than what he has already been offered elsewhere.
That’s technically three questions, but like I said, math has never been my strong point.
And speaking of math, thanks to Larry Brooks for “laying out some of the possible ways the Rangers could clear room for Sundin”:http://www.nypost.com/seven/12152008/sports/rangers/welcome_mats_144241.htm:
The Blueshirts currently have approximately $1 million of cap space. Pro-rating cap hits, the Blueshirts would need approximately $2.877M of space on Dec. 27 in order to be able to offer Sundin a full-season contract of $5M, half of Vancouver’s standing bid.
Trading or waiving Petr Prucha by Friday would add approximately another $1M of space. Returning freshman Lauri Korpikoski – who has had three straight games of under 10 minutes of ice time – to the AHL Wolf Pack by Friday would add approximately another $635,000 of space.
That would give the Rangers about $2.635M of space – enough to allot Sundin around $4.25M.
Brooks notes that the most logical option to many, trading Michal Rozsival or Wade Redden, is unlikely, so that this piece-meal approach is the most feasible. But who would be willing to take on Prucha at this stage in his career? It would have to be someone who has the space for his $1.6 million salary (which would be prorated), and who can appreciate what Prucha could do if given the opportunity.
What’s that? You say Don Maloney, the Phoenix GM who drafted Prucha and saw him score 30 goals as a rookie, has an estimated $9 million in cap space to work with?
But do you think Glen Sather has Maloney’s cell number?