Defensemen Anton Stralman will not be returning to the New York Rangers next season according to TSN insider Pierre LeBrun. It would seem New York wanted to do more to keep the underrated D-man, but Stralman will test the waters of free agency.
Stralman’s departure will suddenly leave them a little thin at the defenseman position. Stralman didn’t draw much attention while playing great last season, but his absence might. Now the question is will Dan Boyle be New York’s next move?
The severity of New York losing Stralman will show in the coming months and also depends on what they do during free agency. One problem is suddenly the market for quality defensemen is extremely thin.
Odds are that no matter how well the Rangers do in free agency, Stralman will be missed on New York’s blue line. The luxury of having two defensive pairings capable of matching up with the opposition’s best line is something the Rangers will miss for sure.
Stralman deserves whatever contract he gets, which will be a significant raise. But in the end the Rangers have many priorities to try and handle this offseason, so it was going to tough to afford Stralman. Next season is gong to be extremely interesting for the Rangers, because they will likely be a much different team than the one that won the Eastern Conference last season.
With the rumors of Stralman’s departure from New York, the Rangers can hopefully narrow their targets in free agency and also save some money to take care of a few important restricted free agents. The possibility of Boyle signing with the Rangers is now very favorable.