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Report: Sather shopping Del Zotto, Girardi, possibly others

Dec 23, 2013, 9:57 AM EDT

NEW YORK, NY - DECEMBER 20: Dan Girardi #5 and Michael Del Zotto #4 of the New York Rangers leave the ice following a 5-3 loss to the New York Islanders at Madison Square Garden on December 20, 2013 in New York City. Getty Images

It’s no secret that the New York Rangers haven’t even come close to living up to expectations this season. With nearly half the campaign in the books, Rangers GM Glen Sather is trying to make a trade to spark his club, according to league executives that talked to the Ottawa Sun.

It’s believed that Sather is willing to entertain offers involving just about any player not named Chris Kreider, Rick Nash, or Henrik Lundqvist. On top of that, he’s reportedly been shopping defensemen Dan Girardi and Michael Del Zotto.

The fact that Sather would like to trade Del Zotto is hardly a shock. Rangers coach Alain Vigneault hasn’t been impressed by the offensive defenseman and has made him a healthy scratch on multiple occasions.

At the same time, the blueliner is just 23 years old and recorded 13 goals and 62 points in 123 contests over the previous two campaigns. He also comes with a reasonable $2.55 million cap hit and is scheduled to become a restricted free agent this summer, so there should be a market for him.

Senators GM Bryan Murray has reportedly shown interest in Del Zotto, but Murray isn’t in a position to increase the team’s payroll, so the Rangers would have to be willing to help keep the deal balanced financially.

Girardi being mentioned is a bit more surprising when you consider how heavily the Rangers have leaned on the 29-year-old defenseman in recent years. At the same time, he is scheduled to become an unrestricted free agent this summer and is likely to demand a sizable raise over his current annual cap hit of roughly $3.3 million.

Of course, the NHL is currently in the midst of the holiday roster freeze, so the Rangers can’t do anything in the near term.

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