Tyler Motte thrilled for New York Rangers reunion
Tyler Motte showed up to the New York Rangers practice facility really early and amped up to get to work. After joining this team at the last trade deadline en route to a run to the Eastern Conference Final, he’s thrilled to be back for another chance with this group.
“Obviously excited,” Motte said. “I had a little taste of this city and this locker room last year and I’m just excited to be back for hopefully another run.”
On Sunday, the Rangers re-acquired him from the Ottawa Senators for Julien Gauthier and a conditional seventh-round pick. At practice, he slotted on the left wing of the fourth line centered by Jake Leschyshyn and Barclay Goodrow on the right side.
“There’s no secrets to my game and how I have success,” Motte added. “It’s just a matter of coming in here finding which piece of the puzzle you are and just help this team win.”
Motte will play his first game for the Blueshirts on Monday night versus the Winnipeg Jets wearing 14. Last season, he wore 64.
Tyler Motte excited for New York Rangers reunion
Motte, 27, has recorded 9 points in 38 games this season for the Senators while averaging 13:32 of ice time. On the year, he has one shorthanded goal and averages 2.31 hits per game.
The Rangers originally traded for Motte last season at the deadline from the Vancouver Canucks for a fourth-round pick. This past offseason, the Blueshirts wanted to re-sign him but the two sides could not agree to a new deal. He eventually signed a one year deal with the Sens for $1.35 million but always left the door open for a return.
“Mostly familiar faces in here from the staff all the way through to the players,” Motte smiled. “I’m just excited to be back. It’s almost like I never left. This group is hungry. You get that close, you get a taste and you always want more.”
Motte’s time with the Rangers was limited after suffering a shoulder injury during the regular season that limited him to nine games and no points. However, he did return later in the first round against the Pittsburgh Penguins playing a key role in the team’s run to the Eastern Conference Final, recording two goals in 15 postseason matches.
“He was a big part of our group last year,” Gerard Gallant explained. “We had success with him and he’s a good hockey player. He knows what we expect from him as coaches and he knows his teammates. It’s an easy fit.
“When you talk about fourth-line type of players, you want them to be forecheckers. You don’t want them defending all the time and that’s what [Motte] brings to that line.”
The Rangers are happy to have Motte back, but are expected to make at least one more move by the NHL Trade Deadline on March 3.
“Chris (Drury) has done a good job building this team from the inside out,” Motte admitted. “He’s added pieces last year and this year. Just a good group and a great city. Excited to be back.”
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