NEW YORK, NY – JANUARY 02: New York Rangers Defenseman Nils Lundkvist (27) in action during the third period of the National Hockey League game between the Tampa Bay Lightning and the New York Rangers on January 2, 2022 at Madison Square Garden in New York, NY. (Photo by Joshua Sarner/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)

Ah yes, another NHL season is about to unfold and the Rangers are ready to hit the ice in training camp.  I should say all of the Rangers with the exception of one defenseman – Nils Lundkvist.  The details of this story line continue to unfold but it will be extremely unlikely that will we ever see Lundkvist wearing a Rangers sweater ever again.

Why is there drama with Nils Lundkvist?

What is this all about?  Young Nils Lunkdkvist is apparently unhappy with this time as a Ranger and it would see the entire NHL for that matter.  The 22 year old Swedish defenseman, noted as being an offensively minded type of backline player, has never fully adjusted to the North American style of hockey with a smaller rink and far more physicality.  As training camp is set to open up on September 21st, the Rangers depth chart itself is a reminder that Lundkvist’s probable ice time this season would be limited at best and more than likely negligible.

Lundkvist was able to find a spot on the Rangers bench last season and played in a total of 25 games and then was sent to Hartford for the remainder of the season and posted three goals and 15 points in 34 games with the Wolf Pack.  In all reality, ,Nils Lundkvist realizes that the potential to earn anything higher than a third right defenseman spot is almost impossible.  As a result,  Lundkvist and his agent Claude Lemieux have been shopping for suitable trades and Rangers GM Chris Drury needs to find a solid trade deal worthy of replacing Lundkvist.  There seems to be little hard feelings towards Lundkvist who hasn’t harbored any ill will towards the Rangers; the more likely scenario is that this story is about a young hockey player who prefers to play in Europe versus North America.

Rumors have been flying around within the Rangers organization about finding a proper replacement for Lundkvist and as of recently, there are some other teams willing to talk to the Rangers about possible trades.  However, it should also be noted that Lundkvist plans on staying in Sweden rather than reporting to training camp in two weeks and the likelihood of him returning to his old team Lulea whom he played for before crossing the Atlantic and trying his fortunes with the NHL.  In all reality, the Rangers may not be able to find any suitable trades for Lundkvist as most NHL teams would understandably not want to venture into a trade with a player who may not show up and stay in Europe for the conceivable future.

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