Rangers mailbag: What if they can’t trade Lias Andersson?

You ask, we answer. The Post is fielding questions from readers about New York’s biggest pro sports teams and getting our beat writers to answer them in a series of regularly published mailbags. In today’s installment: The Rangers.

If the NHL allows an amnesty buyout prior to the 2020-21 season, who would the Rangers target, Henrik Lundqvist or Marc Staal? — RJ Acquilano

Unless something unforeseeable develops over the next few months, I cannot conceive of Lundqvist returning to the Rangers next season. They have their rotation with Igor Shesterkin and Alex Georgiev. Meanwhile, the left side of the defense consists of Staal, Ryan Lindgren and Brendan Smith, with prospects lined up behind them and the possibility of Tony DeAngelo moving to his off-side. An amnesty buyout of Lundqvist would create $8.5 million of cap space while a buyout of Staal would clear $5.7 million. Sentiment aside, I do not think this would be a difficult choice.

During and after the 1994 Cup win, there was a lot of talk (including in your space) about Mike Keenan going to Detroit or teaming with John Davidson as GM to replace Neil Smith. Have you ever gotten to the truth on these and, if so, can you talk about it 26 years later? Ever thought about writing a book about 1994? Given everything that happened, it’s amazing there is no definitive insider book on the subject. — Rich Wendelken

The estimable Mark Everson, who covered the Rangers for many years and was on the job in ’94, established at the time that there had been contact between Keenan and the Red Wings even as the Rangers were in the midst of the finals against Vancouver. I suspect Keenan may have a different story, and in fact, former Post columnist Jay Greenberg is collaborating with Iron Mike on a book that surely will tackle the subject. I was on the Devils beat that year so I’m not sure I’m “the definitive insider” to write the story of ’94.

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In light of everything that’s happened with him, do you think it is possible Lias Andersson winds up in 2020 Rangers training camp? — Jcap

Possible, I suppose, but to what end? If Andersson, whom I will tell you is perhaps the most polite and friendly teenager I’ve ever covered in my time with the Rangers, does not secure a top-nine spot, what then? There is still much work to be done in order to repair the breach between Andersson and the organization, and more specifically, David Quinn. I believe the Rangers will seek to move him during the offseason, likely as part of a bigger deal, but it that does not come to fruition, then maybe.

Do you think Morgan Barron will sign with the Rangers or wait ’til next year to be a FA and choose the path Kevin Hayes and Jimmy Vesey did?? — Rob Robson

I expect Barron to sign with the Rangers this offseason.

As surely as sunrise, sometime next season The King will be in net wearing a different team’s jersey. Will MSG root for him to win the game? And as vociferously as they rooted for ED-DIE when Giacomin beat the Blueshirts as a Red Wing immediately after being traded away? — Bill Abelson

Ahh, if that in fact develops, it would become the most emotional return of a Rangers icon since Mark Messier came home to a hero’s welcome as a Canuck on Nov. 25, 1997. If Lundqvist returns with another team and Igor Shesterkin is in nets for the Blueshirts, the “building” would root for a 0-0 tie through 65 minutes capped by a 15-round, 1-0 shootout victory for New York.

Carl Hagelin, J.T. Miller and Kevin Hayes vs. the three in their place now. Are the Rangers really better off? Sometimes the moves you don’t make are the best moves. Not in this case however, all are gone. — Aldo Zuppichini

Hayes was essentially exchanged for Jacob Trouba and replaced as second-line center by Ryan Strome, so I think the team did fine in that one. The Hagelin trade was a debacle from Day 1, rushed, ill-conceived, poorly executed (Emerson Etem? Ryan Gropp with the pick?) and probably the Rangers’ worst pound-for-pound deal of the cap era. The return on Miller/Ryan McDonagh seems light, though Nils Lundkvist’s selection with the first-round pick that came back in the deal with Tampa Bay could dramatically change the equation on that one.

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