New York Rangers sign defenseman Ben Harpur to one-year deal

The New York Rangers apparently have liked what they’ve seen in veteran defenseman Ben Harpur.

He was first signed to a Professional Tryout with the Hartford Wolf Pack on October 13 and has now parlayed that into a one-year deal with the big club making him eligible for a call up.

Per CapFriendly, it’s a one-way deal for $750,000.

New York Rangers sign Ben Harpur

ben harpur
Mar 20, 2021; Sunrise, Florida, USA; Nashville Predators defenseman Ben Harpur (17) wins the puck against Florida Panthers defenseman Gustav Forsling (42) during the first period at BB&T Center. Mandatory Credit: Sam Navarro-USA TODAY Sports

Harpur, 27, is a big defenseman coming in at 6-6 and 231 pounds. He’s a left-handed shot, so this certainly is to provide depth behind both Libor Hakej and Zac Jones, who have yet to impress enough to stay in the lineup consistently.

This season with the Wolf Pack, he’s registered no points, 3 shots, and a -3 rating with 2 penalty minutes.

Originally selected by the Ottawa Senators in the fourth-round of the 2013 NHL Draft, he’s played 156 career games since 2015-16. He’s registered 15 points in those contests including 254 hits, 123 penalty minutes, and -42 rating.

During the 2021-22 campaign, Harpur suited up 19 times for the Nashville Predators recording one assist.

Zac Jones and Libor Hajek rotation

The move certainly sparks some thoughts regarding the Rangers current situation on third-pair left defense.

Through 8 games this season, Zac Jones and Libor Hajek have split time with Braden Schneider. Jones has played the most with 5 games, but neither of them has been able to register a point on the season.

Furthermore, each player has a minus rating with Jones at -3 and Hajek at -1. When it comes to giveaways, Hajek has committed 4 in his time, and Jones has 1 to his name.

While we understand Harpur is not the answer, it certainly gives the Rangers a little depth in case of injury or trade.

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