The pending unrestricted free agent confirmed Monday he was asked by team general manager Jeff Gorton to submit a list of 18 teams to which he would not agree to be dealt to.
“It’s disappointing. It sucks,” Nash told reporters at American Airlines Center at the Rangers’ morning skate prior to a game against the Dallas Stars. “I love being a Ranger, love being in New York. It’s just the things that happen when your team doesn’t win and they have to make business decisions. It’s really disappointing.”
The 33-year-old is in the final year of an eight-year, $62.4-million deal, which included a modified no-trade clause he signed back when he was a member of the Columbus Blue Jackets.
The Rangers have lost eight of their past 11 games and are struggling to stay in the Eastern Conference playoff race. Multiple reports have surfaced in the past month or so suggesting the Rangers are prepared to make a slew of trades with Nash being one of several pending UFAs Gorton could move prior to the Feb. 26 deadline.
“When I got asked, I was definitely in shock at first,” Nash added. “You expect it’s going to happen, but you don’t know the feeling until it actually happens when they ask you to submit a list. My one goal is to win a Cup with the Rangers and have a successful season for the Rangers, so it’s unfortunate—the business side of it—and when you’re asked to make a list, you think of the teams that have the best chance [to win a Cup].”
Nash, a two-time Olympic gold medallist with Canada, has 15 goals and 25 points in 52 games this season. The first-overall pick from 2002 has 431 goals and 796 points in 1,041 career NHL regular-season games.