There seems to be a common misunderstanding creeping around Rangers-land lately regarding Paul Stastny. So common in fact, that I feel compelled to address it. So the story goes, the Rangers shouldn’t trade for <insert name of center here> because we should keep our guys and have three good centers.
Just because the Rangers are buying out Brad Richards (they are actually doing that.. right?) doesn’t mean they can sign Stastny and essentially swap their cap space. The Rangers have a number of players due for a raise, most notably Mats Zuccarello, who will quickly eat up the cap savings from expelling Richards. You can take a look at the projected budget here. You will see that if the Rangers do sign Stastny, it will probably be at the expense of Derick Brassard. Or possibly a second pair defenseman who is actually reliable. The Rangers can’t sign Stastny without a trade to shed cap space, thus weakening another position. A stance in favor of signing Stastny cannot be substantiated with “because he won’t cost any of our guys in a trade”.
This is what the roster could look like with Stastny. As you can see, the budget is very tight. This includes trading Derek Dorsett and Derick Brassard for picks or prospects, re-signing Dan Carcillo, Dom Moore, Anton Stralman, and signing Mikhail Grabovski to fill the third line center spot.