For my first post back, I thought I would offer my opinion on one of the most divisive players in Rangerland: Ryan Strome. It irritates me that so many people constantly talk about Strome purely as a trade chip. I get it…he’s not a darling of the analytics community. But is the grass always greener on the other side? Can the Rangers get a better bargain than Ryan Strome?

Strome is currently 21st in scoring in the league. That’s not a typo. Last year he was 42nd. He’s rocking a 76-point pace per 82 games this year. Last year he had a 69 point pace. He’s proven he can play away from Artemi Panarin. He’s proven he can deliver offense. The biggest knock on Strome for me is that he doesn’t score enough goals. If you’re the Rangers and you have Mika Zibanejad at 1C, and you have to “settle” for a 2C that scores between 60-70 points, you take that every day.

He has a fantastic cap hit, and you’d hope – with a flat cap – that Strome and the Rangers could find sensible common ground on a new contract. Is Strome (at the right number – of course) more valuable to the Rangers on the roster or would you prefer futures?

The obsession with moving on from Strome irritates me. It also irritates me that many think he wouldn’t fetch much in a trade. Why not? He’s a top scorer for 2 years, is cheap and is prime age. Come on guys. Stop talking the guy down. Do some basic research and find out how many teams have two centers who are averaging between 60-70 points in their top six. Spoiler: There are not many. Are the Rangers too pass happy and is Strome part of that issue? Sure. That’s not this teams major issue though.