NHL Trade Rumors: NY Rangers Could Trade Ryan McDonagh Ahead Of NHL Free Agent Class Of 2019

New York may have to make a decision with McDonagh's contract ahead of the upcoming free agency.

NHL Trade Rumors NY Rangers could trade Ryan McDonagh before free agency
Paul Sancya / AP Images

New York may have to make a decision with McDonagh's contract ahead of the upcoming free agency.

There could be NHL trade rumors heating up with regards to upcoming free agent defensive players such as the New York Rangers’ Ryan McDonagh. The New York defensive star is said to have his contract coming up around the same time as a handful of other coveted players. They could include the Los Angeles Kings’ Drew Doughty and the Ottawa Senators’ Erik Karlsson. As far as Ryan McDonagh goes, it will mean the New York Rangers are going to need to make some sort of decision possibly before the end of this NHL season regarding his future with the team.

In a recent report from Larry Brooks of the New York Post, it’s noted that Ryan McDonagh has been laid back in terms of talking about his potential free agency situation ahead of the 2019 market. If he gets to the NHL free agent market, the Rangers player could be considered a less-expensive option for teams instead of higher-priced defenders like Karlsson, Doughty, and the Coyotes’ Oliver Ekman-Larsson. However, the team could also make a decision to not let McDonagh simply leave as a free agent and use him as part of a trade package before the 2019 situation even arises.

New York Rangers Ryan Mcdonagh in 2019 NHL free agent class
The New York Rangers Ryan McDonagh could be part of the 2019 NHL free agent class unless the team re-signs or trades him. Winslow Townson / AP Images

When asked about it, McDonagh seemed content right where he was with no current worries over his future situation.

“You know what? I feel like I’ve got a great situation here, I love it both on and off the ice, and there’s no point at all in speculating about what might be down the road. Who knows what the situation is going to be?

“A lot of it is going to have to do with how we play and how I play. The only thing I can control is how I play, so I’m not about to get into whatever different scenarios might come up. It’s not something that’s on my mind.”

At 28 years old, Ryan McDonagh is currently in his eighth season in the league. In all of those seasons he’s played for the New York Rangers and has racked up 49 goals and 181 assists in nearly 500 games played. As a familiar face and fan favorite on the team, McDonagh would need to be re-signed by the Rangers’ management for a bit more than his $4.7 million salary or the team will need to figure out an NHL trade.

As Pro Hockey Rumors reported, that trade could come ahead of the NHL trade deadline in late February or even before the NHL Draft in June. There have been previous NHL rumors about the NY Rangers being one of the teams that could try to bring John Tavares over from the Islanders. With that in mind, a move of McDonagh and other assets could offer up an early indicator that they’re looking to be part of the chase for Tavares or another free agent.