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Report: Rangers eyeing unsigned ‘Hawks prospect Hayes

Jul 17, 2014, 9:22 AM EDT

GaudreauHayes Getty Images

We’ve written quite a bit about Chicago Blackhawks prospect Kevin Hayes already on PHT — see here and here — and now, it looks like the New York Rangers are in the mix for his services.

Per the New York Post, the Blueshirts have targeted the 22-year-old Hayes, who was taken 24th overall by Chicago at the 2010 NHL Entry Draft but has yet to sign an entry-level deal with the club.

More, from the Post:

Several NHL talent evaluators told The Post they believe Hayes, who did not attend Chicago’s prospect camp last week after having done so in each of the previous four summers, likely would have been selected between 15th and 25th had he been eligible to re-enter the 2014 draft. He is regarded as an offensive talent perhaps a bit lacking in the ability to grind.

Hayes, who is eligible/required to sign a two-year Entry Level deal regardless of whether he signs with Chicago or becomes a free agent, would have a shot to make the Rangers with a strong training camp. The Blueshirts appear to have vacancies on their third and fourth lines.

Hayes had a tremendous final season at Boston College, finishing third in the country in scoring while capturing the 2014 Beanpot MVP. But it’s hard to put those accomplishments in context, namely because he was one of the oldest players in collegiate hockey last year, and one of the biggest (the BC website lists him at 6-4, 216 pounds.)

And that’s partly why he may be looking to sign somewhere other than Chicago. It’s no secret the ‘Hawks are stacked; they’ve traded away a number of good young forwards that couldn’t get a regular chance to play in the top six, like Brandon Pirri and Jimmy Hayes. If that latter name is familiar, it should be — Jimmy is Kevin’s older brother, and was sent packing to Florida this season as part of the Kris Versteeg trade. Upon moving to the Panthers, Hayes proceeded to score 11 goals and 18 points in 53 games (the 53 games were more than Hayes saw in three years with the Blackhawks.)

Of course, player agent Robert Murray has said Chicago trading Jimmy has nothing to do with Kevin’s reluctance to sign. “There’s no issue, no problem,” Murray told ESPN Chicago. “It absolutely has nothing to do with Jimmy. Chicago treated Jimmy fine. The trade probably helped Jimmy.”

That final point probably most key. If the elder Hayes found greener pastures elsewhere, maybe the younger is thinking the same? It’s also worth noting that, in New York, Kevin would reunite with former BC teammate Chris Kreider, who scored a career-high 17 goals last year.

  1. 950003cups - Jul 17, 2014 at 9:30 AM

    I can’t wait to read all the posters who act like they know all about him and how and where he’ll fit perfect on the rangers on a line with [insert player] and [insert player].

    This will be the article that proves how little ranger fans know about anything hockey related.

    Fire away geniuses!

    • jhnyr45 - Jul 17, 2014 at 10:10 AM

      trollololololol you don’t stop do you?

      • 950003cups - Jul 17, 2014 at 10:22 AM

        They said the same thing to Noah as he built his arc! They said the same to Jesus as he gathered his disciples. They said the same to Abner Doubleday as he swung his bat. They said the same thing to the Wright brothers, even when they were wrong. It’s a thankless, relentless, job. But somebody has to pioneer the fans!

      • stakex - Jul 17, 2014 at 11:40 AM

        jhnyr just let him be…. he needs to do something to take his mind off how terrible the Devils are these days.

      • 950003cups - Jul 17, 2014 at 1:26 PM

        We’re gonna dominate your rangers all year. I’m calling it a season sweep from now. I have every reason to think so. Rangers only got worse. Devils only improved.

      • buckhome - Jul 17, 2014 at 7:50 PM

        If the Devils don’t sweep, would you promise to go away forever?

    • nebbah306 - Jul 17, 2014 at 1:23 PM

      What a shocker, you’re the first commenter on a Rangers post.

      • 950003cups - Jul 17, 2014 at 1:27 PM

        I don’t miss a beat.

    • DED - Jul 17, 2014 at 5:31 PM

      Sorry to disappoint, cups, but I don’t claim to know him or what line he’d fit in with.

    • johnstone17 - Jul 17, 2014 at 5:54 PM

      Do you have a job?

  2. JoeAvg - Jul 17, 2014 at 9:41 AM

    I’m sure the Rangers and 28 other teams are at least keeping an eye on what happens. Gotta love off-season news. Let’s drop the puck already. Starting to get anxious.

    • hockey412 - Jul 17, 2014 at 10:55 AM

      Agreed. Hopefully the Post-Gazette also ‘leaks’ a story to let him know the Pens just may be interested too.

  3. jhnyr45 - Jul 17, 2014 at 10:09 AM

    We Rags Love college players

    • jhnyr45 - Jul 17, 2014 at 1:50 PM

      Don’t Know why i got thumbs Downs but we had Matt Gilroy out of college, Chris Kreider out of College, We picked up Matt Bodie off of NCAA champs Union and also got Ryan Haggerty from RPI…. And Hagelin and stepan from Michigan and Wisconsin… Also Mac’d… even though he came from the MTL organization as well as several other players

      • moarjam - Jul 17, 2014 at 3:47 PM

        Well you did refer to the rangers as rags…

        Its like a devils fan referring to his team as the debbies or a flyer fan calling them the cryers.

      • buckhome - Jul 17, 2014 at 7:54 PM

        Reason for all the college players is the Rangers want to give Pierre something to talk about when they’re on the national game

      • jpcar7 - Jul 17, 2014 at 8:28 PM

        If you were a real Ranger fan you wouldn’t be calling them Rags. Leave that to all the jealous Devil n Isles fans that have nothing to cheer about so they come on to talk stuff that has nothing to do with the team itself

  4. esracerx46 - Jul 17, 2014 at 10:26 AM

    He’ll be traded before the August 15th deadline. Would not be surprised at all to see Oduya and Hayes traded together to up the level of return.

    • 950003cups - Jul 17, 2014 at 10:39 AM

      Rumor has it, that Chicago may have to part ways with Oduya. Would like to see him back in NJ.

      • esracerx46 - Jul 17, 2014 at 10:51 AM

        Thanks. Im new

    • hockey412 - Jul 17, 2014 at 10:52 AM

      I’m confused…don’t you have to have signed a player at least to an entry level deal to trade them?

      • 950003cups - Jul 17, 2014 at 11:29 AM

        Yes you are correct. Refer to my comment above atop this blog post.

      • phillyphanatic77 - Jul 17, 2014 at 1:47 PM

        When you draft a player you hold his rights, and those can be dealt. Winnipeg just recently traded Jordan Samuels-Thomas to Buffalo then the Sabres signed him to an ELC. It happens all the time. The Blues drafted Soderberg in 2004, held his rights until 2007 when he was traded to Boston, and then finally signed a contract in 2013. It’s no new occurrence.

        So the Hawks have the ability to deal Hayes rights but the return would have to be better than the conditional 2nd rounder they’d get if he just walks.

      • hockey412 - Jul 17, 2014 at 2:29 PM

        Ah, didn’t realize that applied to entry level players that never signed the first contract. You’d have to be crazy to make that trade, though. If he’s not signing he may well have other ideas. Like playing with his brother, for example…who knows. Seems like a bad deal to make unless it’s a throw-in.

      • esracerx46 - Jul 17, 2014 at 2:30 PM

        Thanks for helping me out there Philly… Hayes without signing gets you pick 54 overall I believe. So, any team trading for the rights to sign him would have to give the Hawks better than pick 54. Said team would have to be pretty sure they can sign him. If the Hawks thought they could get more by packaging Hayes and Oduya…or whoever else goes you might be able to get more back. It might be the quantity vs quality debate. What can Oduya get you, what can Hayes get you, and what can both together get you?

      • hockey412 - Jul 18, 2014 at 8:48 AM

        Makes sense to me.

      • phillyphanatic77 - Jul 17, 2014 at 4:23 PM

        What I’d like to know in this situation is if you trade a pick for Hayes can it be conditional on his signing? Let’s say, for example, a team (team x) that projects to pick higher than 54 trades a 2nd rounder to the Hawks but makes it conditional on Hayes signing with said team. Then Hayes decides he wants to test free agency and walks… do the Hawks then retain the 54th pick anyway? Does that 54th pick transfer to team x? Or does it disappear, while the Hawks keep the conditional pick traded to them (say the pick becomes a 3rd, or whatever the terms are) and the team x gets nothing and loses the traded pick completely?

        If it’s that 3rd scenario then there’s almost no chance Hayes rights are dealt. Right now Chicago is guaranteed a good pick in a deep draft, they won’t want to lose that. And any team that deals for Hayes doesn’t have a guarantee that they won’t lose him either. He either signs with Chicago or goes wherever he fits best as a free agent.

      • hockey412 - Jul 18, 2014 at 8:50 AM

        This has to be the most logical, thought out comment section in PHT comment section history.

      • esracerx46 - Jul 17, 2014 at 5:06 PM

        I had that same thought myself about if his rights are traded and fails to sign with a team. Pure speculation on my part but I don’t think the Hawks would leave it up to chance and go the conditional route. I also don’t think hes traded for a 2nd round pick. In the article it stated if Hayes was allowed to re-enter he would be a 15-25 pick. Hawks get number 54 if he doesn’t sign. I don’t think they chance it with a second rounder coming back. Would have to think only a first rounder would get it done.

      • phillyphanatic77 - Jul 18, 2014 at 12:38 PM

        Well thank you Hockey412. I brought it up bc I’d love to see the Flyers deal a pick for him but I also don’t want to lose a high pick in a deep draft for nothing.

        I really don’t think there’s any team out there crazy enough to deal a 1st for this guys rights unless it’s conditional on his signing. If someone did that there’s a good chance that they end up giving away a 1st for squat. It would be terrible asset management. At the same time I’m sure the Hawks don’t want a conditional pick as they can continue to try to negotiate with Hayes, and if it doesn’t work they still get their 2nd. I don’t believe there’s any chance a team trades for Hayes unless they give up something they no longer value, but the Hawks obviously wouldn’t accept that. Therefore he either chooses Chicago or the Hayes FA tour begins.

  5. mb30forlife - Jul 17, 2014 at 11:29 AM

    Big Bodied 4th liner, decent shot.

    • 950003cups - Jul 17, 2014 at 11:30 AM

      Don’t embarrass me

      • mb30forlife - Jul 17, 2014 at 6:14 PM

        Iam a devils fan…. so how can i embarrass you? You are right. ranger fans probably dont know anything about this kid. He isn’t the greatest of all players but he can hit and if he has a little open space he can plink off a goal

      • 950003cups - Jul 17, 2014 at 6:20 PM

        You can’t! We are family! You are my brother! Only way you could shame me is by treason. By becoming a vampire wth blue blood!

        Stay red Ponyboy, stay red.

  6. tross16 - Jul 17, 2014 at 12:11 PM

    Devils please!!!!!

    • mb30forlife - Jul 17, 2014 at 6:15 PM

      We already have enough 2 way contracts for 3rd and 4th line…. DONT NEED ANY MORE

  7. phillyphanatic77 - Jul 17, 2014 at 12:17 PM

    The entire NHL wants this kid… same as it was with Justin Schultz. We don’t need a report to tell us the Rangers are interested.

  8. nyking1963 - Jul 17, 2014 at 1:17 PM

    “He is regarded as an offensive talent perhaps a bit lacking in the ability to grind.”

    Sounds perfect for NYR. As usual they learned nothing from watching LA manhandle them in the finals. Skill will only take you so far. You have to be able to work in teh dirty areas and dig in order to score come playoff time. Rick Nash????????

    • ryanloral - Jul 18, 2014 at 4:42 PM

      Did you even watch the SC finals? NYR did not get manhandled by anyone. They led for basically the entire series and got royally f’d on two incredibly incompetent calls. I am so f’g sick and tired of people saying how the Rangers got manhandled, they’re terrible at center, LAK are the latest and greatest thing to emulate, NYR got worse this offseason. All total crap. Step/Kreids/Nash and Brass/MSL/Zucc will be fine as top two lines. Miller/Lindberg, maybe Lombardi plus Hags, Moore, Glass, Fast will pick up the bottom. One thing I know for sure is the devs will not make the playoffs again this year as they’re total crap. Isles will finish ahead of them.

  9. hauger88 - Jul 17, 2014 at 2:18 PM

    So rangers fans are the only ones who talk about where a player would fit in if rumored to go to a team? Wow that’s pretty spectacular.

  10. hauger88 - Jul 17, 2014 at 2:21 PM

    Someone’s gotta help 950003cups find a girlfriend or at least fund some sort of life.

    • 7mantel - Jul 17, 2014 at 2:40 PM

      If you can do that ,you can cure world hunger !

  11. rupp246 - Jul 17, 2014 at 4:50 PM

    One thing is clear. All Ranger fans know that 95 urine cups is an idiot. That is the last post about him you will see from me, not worth the effort.

  12. bleedrangerblue - Jul 17, 2014 at 5:15 PM

    Wow a season sweep being predicted by the biggest goofball on this site. The devils sweeping the Rangers. You sound like a complete idiot in your posts. Example. Lololol. Bwahaaaha!!, Ranger fans no nothing… What makes you the expert?

    • 950003cups - Jul 17, 2014 at 6:22 PM

      I have crystal balls. They told me the rangers will finish last place. But since their fans know nothing, they will brag about getting Connor McDavid until they realize on Draft Day they have no pick!

      Enjoy!

  13. ragsrus - Jul 17, 2014 at 5:16 PM

    Urine cups is a delusional idiot. Debbie’s are garbage through and through. Rangers are still the much better team while the debs will miss the play offs again. For the third straight year! LOL! And this wimpy little troll talks about the Rangers? Please! Find me ONE non Debbie fan that actually thinks they have a shot at the play offs. There best Dman is Greene followed by Harrold for Christs sake. There best offensive player is 105 years old! What a moron!

    • jhnyr45 - Jul 18, 2014 at 9:15 AM

      His name is ragsrus and i get called into question for being a RANGERS fan…. ok

  14. rsmaggiemae - Jul 18, 2014 at 1:25 AM

    If the Hawks want to rid themselves of players I would not mind the Wild picking up
    Drew LeBlanc from them. and I would also want Hudson Fashing back from the Sabres
    He is a 2 and out from the U of Minn and I could not believe that the Kings traded his rights to the Sabres…..
    THis kid is big and can score goals just what the Wild need as the players down in Iowa are 2-3 years yet in coming up to the NHL

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