When the New York Rangers announced that Pavel Buchnevich and Jacob Trouba would be heading to salary arbitration, it came with another important piece of information.
The Blueshirts will have a second buyout window opportunity this summer.
The announcement in itself is not surprising. It was anticipated and welcomed news with the Rangers in the midst of a salary-cap conundrum. The team has just over $8 million available in cap space, with almost all of it destined to go to newly-acquired defenseman Trouba.
Trouba, 27, was acquired prior to the NHL Entry Draft that saw the team’s 20th overall pick and defenseman Neal Pionk sent to the Winnipeg Jets.
Trouba’s contract status was well known, but the concern grew once Jeff Gorton signed free agent Artemi Panarin to a seven-year deal on July 1. The cap space is now needed to be expanded, and since the Rangers didn’t execute a buyout prior to the NHL Draft, the only other way is to trade players without retaining salary for draft picks.