Category: Trades

Rangers (finally) trade for Rick Nash

It should come as no surprise, but Glen Sather fleeced a rival general manager yet again.

After months of speculation and negotiations, Sather’s patience finally paid off this afternoon as the Rangers completed a trade for Rick Nash.  Derek Stepan wasn’t involved in the deal, neither were Michael Del Zotto, Chris Kreider or Ryan McDonagh.

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Rangers trade Casey Wellman to Florida; Shane Doan visiting New York

There are two bits of news today, which is rare for late July. The first is that the Rangers have traded forward Casey Wellman to the Florida Panthers for a fifth round pick in the 2014 draft. Wellman was initially acquired with a conditional seventh round pick from the Minnesota Wild in exchange for Erik Christensen. In the end, the Rangers essentially dealt Christensen for two draft picks, which is a solid return for a waiver-wire pickup.

Also, the bigger news of the day is that Shane Doan is indeed in New York visiting the team.  He is meeting with management to work on a deal that could potentially bring the winger to Broadway, assuming he doesn’t stay in Phoenix. This is likely just another step in the process of Doan exploring all of his options. He won’t make a decision any time soon, but it’s good to know the Rangers are at least doing what they need to do to woo him.

The great debate: should the Rangers be willing to trade Derek Stepan for Bobby Ryan?

Though it has repeatedly been reported that GM Glen Sather considers Derek Stepan “untouchable,” that hasn’t stopped many from debating whether he should be included in trade offers for superstars like Rick Nash and Bobby Ryan.

Anaheim is specifically seeking a #2 center-man as part of a package for Ryan and has almost certainly requested Stepan from the Rangers (if the Ducks considered Artem Anisimov or Brandon Dubinsky to be suitable second-line pivots, it’s very likely that Ryan would already be a Blueshirt).

So should Sather actually consider dealing Stepan for Ryan?  There is an argument to be made for each side.

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Bobby Ryan trade rumors begin again

Add another name to the ever-churning trade rumor mill.  TSN’s Bob McKenzie reports that Anaheim GM Bob Murray has been receiving numerous calls regarding 25-year-old left wing Bobby Ryan.

You’ll recall that Ryan was in the thick of swirling trade winds in November, but the firing of coach Randy Carlyle quashed those discussions for the 2011-2012 season.

But now McKenzie reports that Murray is again at least willing to discuss Ryan’s availability, even if Anaheim isn’t actively shopping him.

Make no mistake; the Ducks aren’t in a position where they must dump Ryan quickly as Columbus is with Rick Nash.  However, it does make sense for Murray to consider trade offers for a couple of reasons:

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A new potential trade target emerges: Evander Kane

As expected, other options have begun to emerge as potential solutions for the Rangers’ offensive woes outside of Zach Parise and Rick Nash. Parise has already declared his disinterest in signing with the Rangers and Columbus’s asking price for Nash is still through the roof, but there are other players that could help supplement the Blueshirts’ attack.

Trade rumors are building steam as the draft approaches and it does seem as though some significant names could be available.  One of particular interest is Winnipeg Jets left wing Evander Kane.

The 20-year-old, a restricted free agent, is reportedly unwilling to negotiate a new contract with Winnipeg, spurring speculation that he could be trade bait this week.

Plenty of teams would heavy interest, but if Kane is indeed available, GM Glen Sather should get Winnipeg GM Kevin Cheveldayoff on the phone.

Kane was drafted fourth overall in 2009 and is still younger than Chris Kreider and Derek Stepan.  He has only begun to scratch the surface of his ability, yet has put up goal totals of 14, 19 and 30 in his first three seasons with the Jets/Thrashers.

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Kyle Quincey traded to Detroit

According to @TSNBob McKenzie, defensemen Kyle Quincey was traded from the Avalanche to the Lighting for Steve Downie and then flipped to Detroit for a 1st round pick and minor leaguer Sebastien Piche. Not that we have a crystal ball, but this is the third player we covered in the scouting the deadline series to be traded recently. I know, shameless plug. The others were Pavel Kubina and Dominic Moore.

It should be noted that both Quincey and Downie are RFA’s, so it still remains to be seen how much this will impact the trade market as we move closer to the deadline.

Rangers acquire Casey Wellman from Wild for Erik Christensen and 7th round pick

It looks like the Rangers have at least temporarily solved their surplus forward problem, as they have dealt Erik Christensen and a 7th round pick in 2012 to the Wild for Casey Wellman.

Christensen had been a spare part for the Rangers for a long time, and hadn’t played in a NHL game since December 17. The enigmatic and inconsistent center had once shown some chemsitry with Marian Gaborik, but that was short lived. His inconsistent effort quickly made him an afterthought in the Rangers organization.

Wellman is a 24 year old center who has played 41 games at the NHL level over the past three seasons, totaling four goals and nine assists for 13 points. Wellman was an undrafted free agent signed by the Wild after his senior season at UMass-Amherst, where he was a point-per-game player. Per Hockey Wilderness, it doesn’t appear that Wellman got a legitimate shot at the top six in Minnesota, and spent most of his time playing with Brad Staubitz on the third and fourth line.

Christensen was in his last year of a two year contract that paid him $925,000 per season. Wellman is in the final year of a two-way contract that pays him $850,500 at the NHL level. Wellman will be a RFA at the end of his contract.

Rangers Acquire Bouchard From Caps For Kundratek

After a relatively quiet day in Rangerland, Glen Sather made a splash, sending defense prospect Tomas Kundratek to the Washington Capitals in exchange for RW Francois Bouchard. Kundratek, the Rangers third round pick in the 2008 draft, has two assists in seven games this year, with two PIMs and a -1 rating. In 79 career games with the CT Whale/Hartford Wolfpack, Kundratek had a line of 2-12-14, with 44 PIMs and a -1 rating.

Bouchard was a second round pick by the Caps in 2006, selected 19 spots ahead of Artem Anisimov. Bouchard, like Kundratek, has never made it to the NHL thus far in his short professional career. In nine games with the Hershey Bears, Bouchard has no points, eight PIMs and a -4 rating.

Last year, Kundratek was one of the more highly regarded Rangers prospects, and was even a dark horse to make this year’s club. However, after a lackluster camp, Kundratek’s struggles continued with the CT Whale. In some Twitter exchanges with Mitch Beck, it appears that Kundratek had fallen within the depth chart, and found himself as a healthy scratch in more than a few games with the Whale. Players like Stu Bickel, Tim Erixon, and Jyri Niemi appeared to have passed him on the depth chart.

As for Bouchard, from what is available on the internet, it does not appear that he is an NHL talent. He was Washington’s #17 ranked prospect, and has a good offensive skill set. His biggest flaws seem to be skating quickness, work ethic (although this seems to have resolved itself) and strength. At 6’1/195 lbs, Bouchard isn’t exactly weak, but it appears he is knocked off the puck too often.

This move was likely made to address the unbalanced nature of the Whale roster. Prior to this trade, the Whale had 12 forwards and 9 defensemen. Now, they will have 13 forwards and 8 defenseman.

Rangers Acquire Andreas Thurreson For Brodie Dupont

In a minor move that came in the wake of the Brad Richards deal, the Rangers traded restricted free agent forward Brodie Dupont to the Nashville Predators in exchange for RW Andreas Thurreson, also a restricted free agent. Thurreson, 23, is 6’1″ 211 lb, and played more of a third line role for the Milwaukee Admirals (Nashville’s AHL farm team). He has averaged about 30 points per season and 30 PIMs during his five year stint in the AHL. In 25 NHL games spread out over the previous two seasons, Thurreson has a goal, two assists, 6 PIMs, and a -6 rating.

As for Dupont, it looked like the writing was on the wall for him. With the recent signings of Ryan Bourque, Carl Hagelin, Dale Weise, John Mitchell, Chad Kolarik, and Jason Wilson; Dupont was on the outside looking in, even for a spot as a top-nine forward in CT. Some will say that Dupont should have been with the club, but if that were true, wouldn’t he have played more than one game with the Rangers over the past four years with the organization?

Rangers Trade Grachev To St. Louis

In a bit of a shocking deal, the Rangers have dealt Evgeny Grachev, one of their top prospects, to St. Louis in exchange for a third round pick (#72 overall – used on Steve Fogarty). It is very surprising to see the Rangers give up on a 21 year old Grachev so soon. Grachev showed major progress this year in the AHL, and was a dark horse to make the roster this year. Grachev left the OHL early to play professionally in an attempt to jump-start his career. He may have been rushed, but the talent is definitely there.

Don’t forget to follow below for live blogging of the rest of the draft.