This year has become last year with next year becoming this year in a matter of weeks for the Rangers, who will conduct their breakup day exit meetings on Monday in the wake of the run to the Stanley Cup finals that ended with Friday’s Game 5 double-overtime defeat by the Kings in Los Angeles. Meanwhile, club management and the scouting staff conducted their annual pre-free agency and pre-draft player evaluation meetings through last week and into the weekend in New York. The Blueshirts have a significant amount of business to conduct in the offseason, with only 11 varsity players — two goaltenders, four defensemen, one center, one left wing and three right wings — under contract for 2014-15. That group excludes Brad Richards, who is expected to become the club’s second and final amnesty buyout, perhaps as early as this week. A buyout of Richards would clear $6.67 million of cap space for the Blueshirts, who would have approximately $24 million of space — assuming a $70 million cap for 2014-15 — with which to deal with a passel of their own impending restricted and unrestricted free agents and complete the roster. A breakdown: Under contract G Henrik Lundqvist: $8.5 million per through 2020-21 for the face of the franchise. G Cam Talbot: $562,500 through 2014-15 for the invaluable backup who was sidelined for the finals with what The Post has learned was a broken hand he sustained during warm-ups for Game 6 of the conference finals against Montreal. D Dan Girardi: $5.5 million per through 2019-20 for the top pair right defenseman, who has played the second most minutes in the NHL over the last three years, playoffs and regular seasons combined, his 6,651 minutes exceeded by only Drew Doughty’s 6,964. D Ryan McDonagh: $4.7 million per through 2018-19 for the captain-in-waiting who turned 25 on Friday.
Breaking down the Rangers’ offseason options
New York Post | Jun 16