New York Rangers top five trade deadline acquisitions
The New York Rangers made several big moves leading up to the NHL Trade Deadline in the 2022-23 campaign.
There’s no doubt that Patrick Kane is the trade everyone is going to focus on, but they also added Vladimir Tarasenko and Niko Mikkola weeks prior to March 3. We also shouldn’t forget Tyler Motte, who is going to slot in as a fourth-line grinder but could score a magical playoff goal or two.
While we await to see how these deadline deals pan out, it made me start to think about some great deadline trades the Blueshirts made over the years.
New York Rangers top five deadline acquisitions
Matteau, Matteau, Matteau!
The Rangers paid a heavy price to win the Stanley Cup in 1994. On deadline day, GM Neil Smith took a first place lineup and turned it on its head with multiple moves that saw fan-favorite Mike Gartner jettisoned for Glenn Anderson. He also added aging veteran Craig MacTavish as a shutdown center. However, the most costly move was trading rising young star Tony Amonte to the Chicago Blackhawks for Stephane Matteau and Brian Noonan. After the deal, Matteau picked up 4 goals and 7 points in 12 regular-season matches. In the playoffs, he added 6 goals and 9 points in 23 games. Matteau is the best deadline move for one big reason, he scored the triple-overtime goal in Game 7 against the New Jersey Devils in the Eastern Conference Final to help end a 54 year curse.
“I’ve always said since day one, of all the trades I’ve made that was the worst one,” Neil Smith told Forever Blueshirts. “But without Noonan and Matteau you don’t win the Cup.”
Marty St. Louis
It was a stunning move by GM Glen Sather to trade his captain Ryan Callahan and picks for Tampa’s Marty St. Louis on deadline day March 5, 2014. Out of the gate, St. Louis struggled with just 1 goal and 8 points in 17 regular-season games. However, his clutch play and locker-room leadership led the Rangers to their first Stanley Cup Final appearance since 1994. In the postseason, he recorded 8 goals and 15 points in 25 playoff games which included 3 game-winning goals. One of them was the OT tally against the Montreal Canadiens to win the Eastern Conference.
On deadline day, March 6, 1990, the Rangers dealt Ulf Dahlen and picks to the Minnesota North Stars to acquire Mike Gartner. Earlier in the season, GM Neil Smith acquired center Bernie Nicholls and needed to get him a true scoring winger. Gartner did just that scoring 11 goals and 16 points in 12 games. New York won the division thanks to that deal but were knocked out by the Washington Capitals in round two. Yes, that was the John Druce led Caps for those who painfully remember.
New GM Chris Drury makes this list with his deadline moves last season that helped the team reach the Eastern Conference Finals. Led by the acquisition of Andrew Copp for Morgan Barron and conditional picks, the Rangers challenged for first in the Metro, ultimately finishing second. Copp, registered 8 goals and 18 points in 16 games during the season and added 14 points in 20 playoff contests.
Just prior to the 1994-95 deadline, Neil Smith made a move to reinforce his lineup in a bid to repeat as Stanley Cup Champions. On March 23, 1995 he packaged a first round pick, along with Glen Featherstone, Michael Stewart, and a fourth rounder to the Hartford Whalers for Pat Verbeek. He went on to score 10 goals and 15 points in 19 games and added 10 points in 10 playoff games but the team was swept by the Philadelphia Flyers in the second round.