Another trade is expected for the New York Rangers at deadline

New York Rangers
Feb 20, 2023; New York, New York, USA; New York Rangers center Vincent Trocheck (16) celebrates his goal with right wing Vladimir Tarasenko (91) during the second period against the Winnipeg Jets at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Danny Wild-USA TODAY Sports

The NHL Trade Deadline is officially nine days away (March 3) and the New York Rangers are expected to make one more deal.

At this point, barring any trade to ship salary out or sending someone down on waivers, GM Chris Drury should have about $908K in salary they can add per CapFriendly. That’s actually just enough to acquire top target, Arizona Coyotes center Nick Bjugstad on deadline day without the need to retain salary.

Of course, there’s always the possibility of a home run swing for Patrick Kane.

Let’s quickly look at the trades they’ve made so far:

  • 11/23 – Ryan Reaves to Minnesota for a fifth-round pick in 2025
  • 2/9 – 2024 first-round, fourth-round, Sammy Blais, and Hunter Skinner to St. Louis for Vladimir Tarasenko and Niko Mikkola
  • 2/19 – Julien Gauthier and a conditional seventh-round pick to Ottawa for Tyler Motte

New York Rangers expected to make one more trade

Patrick Kane New York Rangers
Wendell Cruz-USA TODAY Sports

As the calendar gets closer to the trade deadline, a lot of eyes are on the New York Rangers. They are considered one of the top contenders to win the Stanley Cup this season and there’s no reason not to uncover every possible stone.

Forever Blueshirts worked with PuckPedia to examine if there’s a path cap-wise to still acquire Patrick Kane. We broke down one scenario as follows:

  • Waive Jake Leschyshyn by February 25 to accrue $1.75M+ in cap space
  • Trade Vitali Kravtsov to shed $875K more
  • Get third party involved to drive Patrick Kane AAV to $2.625M (75%)

Since then, NY Post reporter Larry Brooks suggested waiving Vitali Kravtsov now to accrue more cap space and The Athletic’s Arthur Staple is noting there’s still a possibility as well. In addition, Staple indicated that Patrick Kane believes a trade to the Rangers is not out of the question.

ESPN’s Emily Kaplan verified that by reporting Kane is exploring if the Rangers are still an option. “So now Kane is recalibrating again,” Kaplan writes. “I believe he has asked to explore whether going to the Rangers is still an option. It’s not impossible, but it would require serious maneuvering.”

Another top insider, Elliotte Friedman weighed in on the potential for a Rangers’ blockbuster.

“A lot of their heavy lifting is done. Word was they wanted one more forward, and Tyler Motte arrived on Sunday,” Friedman wrote about another big move. “I don’t know. I think GM Chris Drury likes the attention focused elsewhere. Would I say it’s likely? No. But, like with Toronto, it’s silly to assume they wouldn’t consider anything.”

Kane, 34, has scored 42 points in 53 games this season. He has a massive cap hit of $10.5 million that many contenders will require a third team to help drive down the cost. Friedman also said that the Edmonton Oilers have made a pitch to land him.

In an interview with Forever Blueshirts, Sportsnet’s Luke Fox weighed in on the Rangers and Kane.

“It seem highly unlikely at this point,” Fox told us. “My sense is Chris Drury engaged in conversations but it was cheaper to go with Vladimir Tarasenko instead. Then you saw the disappointment in Patrick Kane’s face. I can’t remember the last time a player who’s under contract openly express he wasn’t traded to a team… I’d be stunned if he ended up with the Rangers at this point but I won’t be if he accepts a trade and moves on.”

One thing that everyone seems to believe is that Drury will make another move to solidify his lineup. There’s the aforementioned Bjugstad but that’s not the only target.

The Rangers were scouting the Blackhawks last night, and Sam Lafferty is someone we mentioned back in January. Drury would need to send salary the other way in order to fit his $1.15 cap hit. Another is Nick Bonino of the San Jose Sharks, but the Rangers would require some salary retention to make his $2.05 cap hit fit.

“I feel like it would be a depth move like that (for the Rangers),” Fox explained. “No doubt, they’re making a push. If there’s a way to improve their team, they’ll do it.”

Editor’s Note: Our full interview with Luke Fox is now available on our YouTube channel

NHL News and Rumors

NHL Recaps. All the latest scores here.

NHL Rumors: More teams enter Timo Meier sweepstakes. Read more.

NHL Rumors: Patrick Kane decision coming. Read more.

Check out the latest NHL Trade Bait Tracker right here!

Anthony Scultore is the founder of Forever Blueshirts and has been covering the New York Rangers and the NHL... More about Anthony Scultore

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