Dubinsky: To Trade Or Not To Trade?

HockeyBuzz’s Jan Levine on the question of whether Dubi should be included in any trade that would help land Bobby Ryan:

[…]what is the value/upside of Brandon Dubinsky? Is he a player to build around and can be considered a core member of the Rangers for now and down the road, or should the Rangers take advantage of his current hot streak and deal him when his value is high?

Levine goes through a bit of “will the real Brandon Dubinsky please stand up?” and discusses team chemistry a bit, referring back to the trades Mike Kennan made back in 1994 that helped the Rangers acquire the pieces that they needed to win the Cup.  I’ll let you read the analysis (and the conclusion), but I do want to kick in a couple of things.

First, it’s going to take A LOT more than Dubi to score Bobby Ryan (which I’m pretty sure Levine knows, as she talks about Dubi being a piece in the trade).  According to CapGeek.com, Dubinsky has a cap hit of $4.2MM for the next 3 season after this one.  Bobby Ryan’s is $5.1MM for a season longer than that, but he’s a year younger.  The Rangers have just enough room to fit his contract on the books.  The Ducks are almost definitely looking for some real cap relief, or in absence of that, some real prospects.  Like, multiple blue chip prospects, and probably a draft pick as well.

Secondly, I don’t think Rangers brass is balking at the idea of moving Dubinsky at all.  I think they’re balking at the cost (with good reason) beyond Dubinsky.  Granted, Ryan has back-to-back-to-back 30 goal seasons (and is on pace again this year), but is he really going to be worth gutting the farm system?  Dubinsky will never be that kind of goal scorer, but he’s shown steady improvement over the years, and generally, I think he’s good for 20 goals and 50 points, with an upside of 60 (despite his pace for this year).  There’s something to be said for that type of consistency.

Finally, we can’t really have this discussion without discussing the idea of a new CBA being negotiated, which every GM has to be thinking about.  If the Ducks are shedding Ryan’s contract, are they really going to want to pick up almost the same amount in salary with a new CBA looming?  I’m not sure they do.

I’m not saying that I wouldn’t trade Dubinsky.  I’m just not sure I’d trade everything else.


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