Article: OFFER FOR ZHERDEV; ANTROPOV LIKELY OUT

Larry Brooks of the New York Post echoes the reports from yesterday stating that the Rangers offered Nikolai Zherdev a Nikolai Zherdevqualifying offer and that Nik Antropov is asking for too much money.

In regards to Zherdev, Sather is unsure of whether or not the winger will accept the offer but extending that offer means he may not be compatiable in a Dany Heatley trade.

“I don’t know whether he is going to accept it, though; I can’t get an answer from his agent,” Sather said of the winger who went scoreless in the final seven games of the regular season and then failed to register a point in the playoffs. “Nik played very well at times, but he has to become more consistent and a little more determined.”

The qualifier means the Rangers will retain his rights should Zherdev opt to play in Russia, but it also means Ottawa is less inclined to accept him in a deal for Dany Heatley. The Post has been told Ottawa general manager Bryan Murray has scoffed at Sather’s offer of Zherdev and Michal Rozsival.

As for Antropov, Sather reports that the big winger is looking for a long term deal worth about $5 million per season.

“Based on the first volley from [agent] Mark Gandler, there is a slim chance [of Antropov returning],” the general manager said following the fifth round of the Entry Draft. “There’s a snowball’s chance in hell that’s going to happen. It’s ridiculous. I hate to criticize an agent, but let’s have a little bit of reality here.”

Antropov, who scored seven goals in 18 regular-season games for the Blueshirts but was barely a factor in the first-round defeat by Washington, earned $2.05 million last year. He’s believed seeking a long-term deal for at least $5 million per. Good luck to him.

Rotter: I don’t see how Nik Antropov gets off asking for five million dollars a year. He did score a career high in goals last season but five million is way to much for the Rangers to give him. As for Zherdev, he has all the talent in the world and if he wants to come back to the Rangers he must want to prove something and I am down with that.