Nick Holden: Odd Man Out? Reports surface Rangers are moving the defenseman
As reported by both TSN, and Larry Brooks it looks like Nick Holden may be the odd man out when it comes to the log jam on the Rangers blueline this upcoming season, which should be no surprise to many.
We’ve reported on the site quite a few times (here, here, and probably here too), that trading Nick Holden would probably be on the Rangers radar, to help them land a sure fire 1C/2C option that this team desperately needs, but after Brooks article, this may be more of a way to dump salary than anything else.
The Blueshirts are projected to start the season with just $445,556 of cap space if they carry eight defensemen (including Alexei Bereglazov) and 14 forwards (including Andersson and Boo Nieves with Jesper Fast on IR). The Rangers are expected to attempt to deal defenseman Nick Holden ($1.65 million) in order to bulk up in the middle, if possible.
Quite possibly the Rangers could get creative, and find a way to sit comfortably, with a new center man (like Tyler Bozak), and some cap space to start the year. But, head coach Alain Vigneault seems more than okay to start with Zibanejad, Hayes, Desharnais, and either Miller, Andersson, or Nieves as the possible centers to start the season.
Too many defensemen
The real problem here is the defense which after the top four, you have five to six guys competiting for the next three to four spots. Marc Staal, is more of a given to get one of the spots (buying him out, while ideal in my opinion, won’t happen), but you also have Holden, Bereglazov, DeAngelo, and either Poink, or Day fighting for a spot when it comes to camp.
In a previous article, Brooks mentioned one if not two of the defenseman would be gone. In my opinion, moving Holden as a salary dump, might be the best, and most feasible option. We’ll keep you updated with the latest.