It’s no secret that the New York Rangers went big at the trade deadline. Patrick Kane, Vladimir Tarasenko, Niko Mikkola, and Tyler Motte brought in a strong group to support a team that has been rather inconsistent this season. Since the additions, there have been some obvious growing pains watching the adjustments these players have needed to make to help the Rangers in a new scenario, but they’ve made the team stronger.
When Tarasenko became a Ranger, many thought that it took the Blueshirts out of the chase to land Patrick Kane. As we know, that proved not to be the case because Kane seemingly only wanted to come to this city, and this team. There have been theories that perhaps Rangers and Knicks owner James Dolan saw the outbursts of Kane’s disappointment in Chicago and urged Drury to get it done but we may never know the truth.
Tyler Motte was on this team last year. Most of the guys know him from the playoff run last year as the group overcame the Pittsburgh Penguins and Carolina Hurricanes before giving the Tampa Bay Lightning everything they could handle and more. Bringing back a depth piece like Motte who made such a big difference on the penalty kill and in the bottom six made sense because of the familiarity this organization had with the player.
Niko Mikkola was a big piece in the Tarasenko deal. Drury wanted to address that 3rd pairing left-side defense and he got the gigantic Finnish defenseman in the deal alongside Tarasenko. With the hulking defenseman having stepped into a big role in the prolonged absence of Ryan Lindgren, he showed that he is exactly the kind of player that Chris Drury needed to go out and get at the trade deadline ahead of another playoff push.
So which trade was the best value for the Rangers? When the Rangers started their foray into the trade market, there was a lot going on in the way of player evaluations and rumors as to what each player’s asking price was. At the time of the trade, what addition for the Blueshirts was allowing Chris Drury and the front office to get the most bang for their buck?