Kaapo Kakko in New York Rangers jersey skates with puck.
Kaapo Kakko's future with the Rangers is uncertain. Will they re-sign him or trade him? Get the latest rumors and analysis here.

The New York Rangers are a Stanley Cup contender, but the future of Kaapo Kakko, the former second-overall pick, remains uncertain. Kakko is approaching restricted free agency with arbitration rights this summer, and questions linger about whether he’ll remain at Madison Square Garden.

Kakko’s 2023-24 campaign has seen inconsistent production. He has just eight goals and 12 points in 45 games, often finding himself bouncing up and down the Rangers lineup. His playoff performance will likely be a decisive factor in his future with the team. If he can contribute to a deep postseason run, perhaps with a return to the form he briefly flashed in 2021-22, his value to the Rangers will increase. But another underwhelming showing could spell the end of his time in New York.

What’s a likely outcome for Kakko?

The Rangers have numerous roster decisions to make this offseason, not limited to Kakko. There’s potential for a trade involving Kakko, especially if management believes they can get a return that fills a more obvious need within the lineup. This could be a veteran with playoff experience or a young player fitting into the team’s core better.

While there’s potential for re-signing him, there’s no guarantee. His future in New York is clouded, and his playoff performance could be the difference-maker.

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