NHL Rumour Report: Rangers considering franchise-altering trades following ouster

The New York Rangers could be up to something big.

- Rumblings suggest the Rangers are contemplating major moves following a massively disappointing first round exit against their divisional rival in New Jersey.

- Rumours indicate management is considering cutting bait with one or both of their young forwards, Alexis Lafreniere and Kaapo Kakko. Both top two picks in recent entry drafts, but both players that have failed to break out in a crowded veteran forward group.

- Lafreniere rumours quietly swirled last season, after the 2020 first overall pick was unable to make much traction in his sophomore season. Now through his third year in the league, the Rangers appear willing to explore the market. There is some chatter that Lafreniere himself might welcome the change.

- Kakko, a year further into his career than Lafreniere, has also shown flashes of upside but failed to establish himself as a star in the league.

- Opportunities will continue to be limited in New York, with several high end wingers ahead of both players for the foreseeable future. That could get worse if the Rangers were to extend one or both of pending UFAs Patrick Kane and Vladimir Tarasenko. Considering the way the season ended, it seems more likely the two are headed to market in the summer.

- The Rangers' problems go beyond coaching and the performance of a pair of young wingers. That said, the team is reportedly pondering whether their trade value might not get any higher than it is now. With the team's Cup window still fairly wide open, the team cannot afford to sit still this offseason.

- Personally, it would surprise me if the Rangers could get full value for either of these guys. If I were managing the team, I'd give them another few years to grow. But the Rangers are all in the next few seasons, so all bets are off. Definitely a team to watch closely this offseason.

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