Rangers News & Rumors: Fox, Kravtsov, Gaborik & More

In this edition of New York Rangers News and Rumors, the organization signs Adam Fox to a long-term extension, Vitali Kravtsov is back in Russia with Traktor, former Rangers forward Marian Gaborik announced his retirement Thursday, and more.

Fox Signed for 7 Years

Fox, the reigning Norris Trophy (top defenseman) winner, signed a seven-year contract extension at $9.5 million per year. The deal locks up the 23-year-old until he’s 30. He’s the first and only player to win the Norris in just his second NHL season since Bobby Orr. The Rangers will have their top defenseman patrolling the blue line and making amazing plays through the 2028-29 season, after which he’ll become an unrestricted free agent. He has 98 points in 134 career games with the club and is a career plus-46.

Adam Fox New York Rangers
Adam Fox, New York Rangers (Amy Irvin / The Hockey Writers)

Rangers president and general manager Chris Drury had this to say about Fox. “We are thrilled that we have agreed to terms with Adam on a contract extension and that he will continue to play for the team he grew up cheering for,” Drury said. “In just over two seasons, Adam has consistently shown why he is a cornerstone for our organization and one of the best players in the NHL. It has been a privilege for us, and our fans, to watch Adam showcase his ability on a nightly basis, and we are glad to have that opportunity for seven more years.”

Fox leads the Rangers in scoring so far this season with two goals and nine assists in 10 games.

Kravtsov Back to Russia

Shortly before opening night, the Rangers assigned Kravtsov to their American Hockey League affiliate, the Hartford Wolf Pack. Since then, the 6-foot-2, 187-pound forward refused to show up in Hartford. Instead, he decided to sit in limbo and wait out his fate while the Rangers gave him and his agent permission to talk to other NHL clubs about a possible trade. On Nov. 3, Drury announced they were loaning Kravtsov to Traktor of the KHL, the team he played for last season.

Kravtsov responded by saying, “I want to thank the Rangers for working with me and appreciate the open and honest conversations we have had during this process. While this has been a challenging time for me personally, I believe having the opportunity to return to Traktor and work on my game is the best thing for me right now. My main focus is getting better every day to continue towards my goal of playing hockey for the New York Rangers.”

Vitali Kravtsov New York Rangers
Vitali Kravtsov, New York Rangers (Jess Starr/The Hockey Writers)

Drury made this statement. “After discussions with Vitali and his representation, we decided a loan to Traktor was in the best interests of both him and the organization. We think very highly of Vitali, and the Rangers development staff will continue to work with him to reach our mutual goal of him someday being a New York Ranger.”

Although this shows progress with the tense situation, it might have been avoided. With forward Kaapo Kakko getting hurt and not producing (zero points in six games), the Rangers most likely would have called Kravtsov up already. However, the way the situation unfolded, we’ll never know that answer.

Gaborik Retires

Gaborik officially retired on Nov. 4. The former Rangers forward played parts of four seasons with the Blueshirts before being traded to the Columbus Blue Jackets at the 2013 Trade Deadline. He had two 40-plus goal seasons in New York and retired with 407 goals and 815 points in 1,035 games in the NHL.

Gaborik played for five teams over the course of his 17-year career and won a Stanley Cup in 2013-14, helping the LA Kings defeat the Rangers in the Final. Gaborik was the first-ever draft pick of the Minnesota Wild, and scored the team’s first-ever goal.

Related: Remembering Marian Gaborik’s Time as an LA King

Rempe Signs Entry-Level Deal

In other Rangers news, the team signed Matt Rempe to an entry-level contract. The 6-foot-7, 207-pound forward is currently playing for the Seattle Thunderbirds of the Western Hockey League (WHL), where he has four goals in 10 games. The Calgary, Alberta native had 40 points in 65 games last season and was named the Thunderbirds’ “Most Improved Player.”

Positives and Negatives With Fox and Kravtsov

The Rangers went through some ups and downs this past week. They signed their young superstar defenseman to what could prove to be a team-friendly contract. However, they sent one of their (disgruntled) top prospects back to the KHL. Gaborik had a stellar career, and signing Rempe could bring some size to the Rangers’ lineup in the next few years. All in all, the Rangers are in good shape, both now and looking to the future.


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