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Without Drury buyout, cap space trickier

Chris Drury in the Rangers' locker room. (Apr.

Chris Drury in the Rangers' locker room. (Apr. 24, 2011) Photo Credit: Patrick E. McCarthy

If, as the New York Post reported today, Chris Drury cannot be bought out this month because of degnerative knee issues that will prevent him from playing this season (injured players cannot be bought out, an issue that has been raised given Drury's knee problems), the hamstrung Rangers have some calculating to do....

We'll know more this afternoon because if a team intends to buy out a player tomorrow, he must be placed on waivers at noon.

The Rangers can exceed the 2011-12 cap, which will be set on June 30, by 10 percent this summer, and then get down to the number before opening night. If the real cap is $62.4 million for example, the Rangers can carry $68.6 million before paring it down.

With Drury, (7.05m) and D Wade Redden ($6.5m) on the summer cap, the Rangers have 14 players (8 F, 4D and 2 G) on the roster at $47.4 million. Let's say five RFAs (Dubinsky, Callahan, Anisimov, Boyle and Sauer could add another $13 million to the 11-12 cap). Tim Erixon's $1.75 will have to be added at some point. 

So, a buyout of Wojtek Wolski (cap hit of $3.8 million) is possible to shave some $$$ for a high priced free agent like Brad Richards, or someone to be acquired in a trade, such as Jason Spezza or Paul Stastny or perhaps Patrick Sharp.

Placing Drury on Long Term Injured Reserve in September shaves $7.05 and the Rangers aren't liable for the cap hit next season if he was bought out. And Wade Redden's $6.5 million cap hit will be buried in the AHL.

There's a lot of moving parts and options. Stay tuned...

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