Jeff Gorton, GM of the New York Rangers, has his biggest decision for his Restricted Free Agent, Ryan Strome. Strome put up a career high in points and assists this past season on the ice. He is a solid Center who has decent playmaking skills, but needs to improve on consistent face-off wins and to limit his penalties. During his career with the NHL (including his time with the Rangers), Strome has a career faceoff win average of 45.9%.
Strome was drafted by the New York Islanders in the first round of the 2011 draft and spent four years with the organization. He was then sent to Edmonton Oilers in 2017 and then traded to the Rangers in November of 2018. Currently, the Rangers are on very thin ice with their Center core as none of their Centers finished over the 50% win percentage in faceoffs. So knowing that Strome is one of the Rangers’ stronger faceoff men, keeping him around would be a good fit.
Strome also carried a 59 point total in the 2019-20 season playing alongside Artemi Panarin and Jesper Fast. Strome and Panarin were like bread and butter this past season as their chemistry together was very strong. In addition to his 59 point total, Strome had a +21 rating.
Prior to joining the Rangers, Strome agreed to terms with the Edmonton Oilers on a $6.2 million, two-year deal. Now that his contract is up, Strome is looking for an extension with the Rangers and that will take a large chunk out of the Rangers salary cap. Strome also had something to say about his possible future with the Rangers: “I let my agent know what I want to do, I guess we’ll see what happens…this kind of team, with where it’s going, I want to be a part of it.”
With the Rangers possibly nearing a deal with the 27 year-old Forward, a too rich of an offer could hurt their cap due to their current flat cap situation. A shorter term deal, however, with the Rangers could be a better fit. My prediction would be a three-year contract worth $4.8 million.