Do The New York Rangers Need To Make A Trade?


Do the New York Rangers need to trade come March 2nd? Is the team desperate enough to acquire a rental player for a short time, a player that can make a difference between success and failure, if the team gets in the Stanley Cup playoffs?

These two questions are directed at the Rangers fanbase. Is it necessary?

In my opinion, it is not. The pieces are already there and heating up. If we take a look at the questionable positions, mainly a third-line center and defense, it appears those positions are solidified.

More from Blue Line Station

Currently, the off-season acquisition of Kevin Hayes is starting to pay off. Standing at 6’5 and weighing 225 lbs., this makes him a big body to deal with. This season, he has show a great two-way game, often garnering praise from MSG’s Joe Micheletti for his defense and offensive effort. Both of which are true.

J.T. Miller is remaining steady with his play. Once a highly touted prospect, his career has taken a bit of a hit. Bouncing between here and the Hartford Wolf Pack of the AHL has made him a “yo-yo”. However, just like with other players on the team, he has found a role.

Perhaps not the ideal role, but still a role.

There is no room with the first and second lines. Those appear to be set and doubt Alain Vigeanult makes any drastic changes.

This could be a blessing in disguise for Miller.

No longer does he have to live up to the hype of being a first round draft pick. His on-ice time maybe reduced, but he can relax and read what the other team is doing, what his teammates are doing. He can look at the game, while playing it.

Playing alongside the above-mentioned Hayes and four-year starter Carl Hagelin on the third line, Miller has the potential to find a consistent game. And it does not hurt to be around offensive weapons such as his linemates. The third line could become what the fourth line was last season.

Speaking of the fourth line, the line of Tanner GlassDominic MooreLee Stempniak (Jesper Fast) is not a bad option.

Ok, ok, Glass has not lived up to his end of the bargain, especially early in the season. Sure, he may not have the best puck possession numbers in the NHL. He is not an offensive juggernaut, scoring only one point in his 50+ games this season. He has the worst goal rating of -15 heading into Tuesday’s game, the worst on the team.

But for all of Glass’ faults, he is doing some good that some fans aren’t noticing. He is making the team tough to play against, working hard on the forecheck, causing scoring chances, crashing the net by getting in the trenches, and backing up his teammates on the ice. In addition, he is a +2 in his recent five games.

Let’s cut the guy a little slack.

The type of player Glass is may not be warranted come playoff time, however. Normally, the rough housing occurs in the regular season. He may become a healthy scratch for most games. But, he is a “strong arm” option to have at your disposal.

More from Editorials

If the Sather needs to make a move, it could be a depth seventh defenseman. However, the defensive corps of the Rangers is a strong unit. Dan Boyle, despite being spotted on the third pairing and being demoted to the second power play unit, is playing well as of late. He has three points in his past five games with one goal in that span. Boyle is second among Rangers defensemen in goals with eight.

Just like Miller, Boyle’s diminish role on the team maybe a blessing in disguise. The weight of having to score or be the power play quarterback is not as prominent for him. The pressure of having to make something happen being on the second pairing has been lifted. He no longer needs to be the scoring machine. Instead, he has become a mentor to others, especially his defensive partners John Moore and Matt Hunwick.

So looking at it, the Rangers don’t necessarily need to make a trade. But that’s coming from a fan’s point of view. Glen Sather and the rest of Rangers management have their fingers on the red button.

Let’s see what they do.