Barring a dramatic, unforeseen development, the countdown on Nikolai Zherdev’s final 96 hours as a Ranger will commence upon the conclusion of this morning’s salary arbitration hearing between the winger and the Blueshirts that will be conducted in Toronto.According to the CBA, the arbitrator will have 48 hours to reach a decision on the 2009-10 salary due Zherdev, who declined the Rangers’ $3.25M qualifying offer and is requesting $4.5M for the coming season.

It is unknown whether the Blueshirts, who will be represented at the hearing by assistant GM Cam Hope, have submitted a bid lower than the QO.

In any event, once the arbitrator’s decision is announced — arbitrators are permitted to award any salary in the range between the bids and most often come close to splitting the difference — the Rangers will then have another 48 hours in which to decide whether to accept the contract or walk away from it, thus making Zherdev an unrestricted free agent.


  1. Tachmo says:

    This guy is very talented and on the cusp of being a superstar. He has to be signed. Im not sure if he is worth more then 3.25 mil a season right now though.

  2. daveski111 says:

    Come on leafs. make an offer to Zherdev, we need a top 6 forward and i belive he can bring scoring to the leafs. im sure burke will take run at him. maybe a 2 year contract worth 8mil. pay him 4 mil per season. where good on d man now. finger will likley play 4 the marlies. that then will realse some cap room. and room on the blueline. goaltending is good. We got some in ur face players. lol a lot of them. burkes plan is top 2 lines scoring lines. 3 an 4 checking and enforcing lines. i see were pretty much done line 3 and 4 with the addition of wayne premeiu. now its time 2 work on the top 2. blake was awsome last year. an i liked mitchell as well. we need 1 or 2 top forwards. with at least scoring potenial. zherdev can bring that.

  3. goose says:

    I agree,
    ive always likd zherdev,
    hes one of my favorites,
    he can bring alot to the team,
    and thank god finger has a 2-way contract.
    yes send him to the minors to make room!!!!
    Come on Burke do you thing!!!

  4. muckies says:

    Van: Zherdev
    NYR:  2nd and 3rd round drfat choices

  5. goose says:

    To Toronto: F, Zherdev
    To NY Rangers: 2nd round pick in 2011- Calgarys, D, Finger/Van Ryan & a minor player/prospect

  6. Kramer says:

    Zherdev sounds like a vodka brand.

  7. lukeleim says:

    I believe Brian Burke is finished:

    2009-2010 Lineup

    Alexei Ponikarovsky – Mikhail Grabovski – Nikolai Kulemin
    Jason Blake – Matt Stajan – Jiri Tlusty
    Niklas Hagman – John Mitchell – Lee Stempniak
    Jamal Mayers – Wayne Primeau – Colton Orr
    Rickard Wallin, Tyler Bozak, Christian Hanson

    Tomas Kaberle – Luke Schenn 
    Ian White – Mike Komisarek
    Mike Van Ryn – Francois Beauchemin
    Jeff Finger, Garnet Exelby

    Vesa Toskala
    Jonas Gustavsson
    Justin Pogge

  8. Jenkinstein says:

    Ah the maple leafs, striking no fear into the hearts of opponent d-men since 2005..

  9. BigJay says:

    Gillis wont trade for a lazy player. His stated goal is character.
    Dont get me wrong, the bum is talented, but wow, a huge floater.
    In my mind, no different than Wellwood, look what he is going to get.
    Pass on this one.

  10. leafmeister says:

    That is an interesting observation, but considering the fact that the Leafs have been top 10 in scoring 3 out of 4 years since the lockout it is an unequivocally false observation.

  11. leafmeister says:

    No thanks, part of why I like Burke is that he has a distinct vision for the team, and yes part of that is skilled top 6, but it also includes good character guys, which is not Zherdev.

    I say keep the roster as it is, instill a defense first style into the team, and then add the forwards at the draft/july 1 2010.

  12. quick_stick says:

    Burke isn't finished.  He needs to trim the Dmen ( you left out Frogen).  He'll move a dman (likely packaged with a forward and/or a pick) to upgrade the forward position. 

  13. trueblue says:

    As a Ranger fan…its a strange thing to see him not signed for 7 million when guys like Drury and Gomez were signed for that much and this guy did as good as them statistically… Zherdev is very talented and very young… if he matures he could be a superstar…worse case scenario he doesnt and you end up with a 60 point player… my bet is he matures in some departments but not as much so in other departments… His value is understated by all the Leaf fans here which is typical…

    It will be interesting to see what transpires… This much I know…If the Rangers let him go teams will be ligning up to sign this guy which will really make some of the Leaf fans that posted on him look like c#@p!

    Personally, I would like to see the Rangers sign him if need be and deal him in a package for a top rated player…

    Zherdez, Drury as the base of a deal for Marleau or Thornton…

  14. trueblue says:

    Im curious who you would deal to get Zherdev

  15. quick_stick says:

    Both Jason Blake and Alexei Ponikarovsky had more points than any Ranger.  Only Kovalev had more points on Mtl (but his +/- was worse).  Not that either of these teams are the bench mark for Offense, but the point is if you score by committee, you don't always have a ppg guy.

  16. glotz_99 says:

    Although I dont see Zherdev going the Leafs way, it wouldn't be a bad pickup to add some scoring. This guy is only 24 yrs old and is defintly capable of being a 30-40 goal scorer. They could sign him to a 2 yr 7.5 million contract and with the added ice time I could see him really devolping into a great top line player.

    This is how the team would look

    2009-2010 Lineup

    Alexei Ponikarovsky – Mikhail Grabovski – Nikolai Zherdev
    Jason Blake – Matt Stajan – Nikolai Kulemin
    Niklas Hagman – John Mitchell – Jiri Tlusty
    Christian Hanson – Wayne Primeau – Colton Orr
    Rickard Wallin, Tyler Bozak

    Tomas Kaberle – Luke Schenn 
    Ian White – Mike Komisarek
    Mike Van Ryn – Francois Beauchemin
    Garnet Exelby, Phil Oreskovic

    Vesa Toskala
    Jonas Gustavsson
    Justin Pogge

    They could then send Finger down to the marlies to save some cap room if needed and trade Lee Stempniak for a 2nd or 3rd rd pick and Jamal Mayers for a 3rd or 4th rd pick.

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