2/24/16 | 3:40PM: Bob McKenzie wonders if the Rangers have an advantage with Staal because they can present him with an opportunity to play with Marc.
McKenzie also wonders about the idea of Staal not being a rental for the Rangers, "what if his Brotherly Love cap hit-discount, in a place like New York, was deep enough for the Rangers to consider him a longer-term option and not just a one-and-done rental?" (TSN)
2/23/16 | 6:28PM: On TSN Insider Trading, Bob McKenzie spoke of Eric Staal and said that the Hurricanes and Staal are still in a holding pattern.
He added, "I'm curious to see if the Rangers step up, the Rangers have said that they aren't in the high rental market anymore because they have mortgaged so much of their future in past years that they can't keep giving up first round picks and top prospects for rental players like Eric Staal. But, with the Rangers playing well lately and Marc Staal on the blue line, they might be better positioned than some other teams to make an enticing bid for the Hurricane captain."
Elliotte Friedman writes that Staal is in control of his situation but adds, when it comes to the Rangers, "but does anyone else see this as the most obvious landing spot for Carolina's captain?" (Sportsnet)
Kevin Allen writes that Staal can play center or wing and would instantly be comfortable because of his brother Marc. (USA Today)
Allen says that for a deal to be made Carolina would likely need to retain salary. (USA Today)
Scott Burnside mentions Staal as well as someone who would get a "soft landing" by joining the Rangers and mentions that he can play both center and wing. (ESPN)
Adam Rotter: There are two questions that come with Staal and pretty much every player when there is a possible trade: Is he a fit? and what does he cost?
Is he a fit? Yes. He's big, skilled, has won a Stanley Cup and would provide the Rangers with excellent depth and a very deep lineup. Pending that the Rangers don't move someone off the roster for Staal, adding him, and Rick Nash, would likely push Chris Kreider down to the third line, Jesper Fast would be back in the bottom-six and the Rangers would have decent options to rotate in and out.
It's what Staal will cost or could cost where the problem comes in. He is a rental but he has a no-move clause so he controls where he will go. What kind of package would get it done? A player/prospect and a pick? Multiple picks? First rounders? Second rounders? It's a very tough decision. Adding Eric Staal provides the Rangers with another quality player who can help them go deep in the playoffs but there are no guarantees.
2/24Update: Adam Rotter: The Rangers have shown a willingness to part with more for a player who is under contract, but I'm not sure they can get an assurance that Staal will sign with them or if it's even a good fit before they make that move, if they make that move.
Beyond all the factors that come with possibly trading for Staal and who the Rangers would give up, when it comes to keeping him the only question is how much of a pay cut is he willing to take and how would he fit within the salary structure? He has a cap hit of $8.25 million but his actual salary this year is $9.5 million.