If you want to talk about former Rangers having career years away from the organization this year that could drive their team to the Stanley Cup, Brady Skjei has to be the poster boy. What a season he has had as a member of this Carolina Hurricanes roster. Shattering his career highs in goals, assists, and points to come joint 3rd in the league by goals among defensemen tied with his teammate. He’s been absolutely spectacular this season.
As a long-time member of this Rangers roster, a lot of the players on this roster played with Skjei. Even the kids like Kaapo Kakko and Filip Chytil spent time on the ice with Skjei. He was a good mentor for some of the young ones coming through that eventually took his job when he was shipped out to Raleigh at the 2020 NHL trade deadline for the 1st round pick that the Rangers would use to trade up and grab Braden Schneider.
In 5 years as a New York Ranger, Skjei tallied 25 goals and 87 assists for 112 points in 307 NHL games. He was a member of some incredibly strong Ranger teams and just was too expensive for the Rangers to keep so when the Canes offered a 1st for him, he was moved. A lot of Ranger fans didn’t like him for his defensive issues but those seem to have been completely ironed out in Raleigh.
Skjei set a career-high last season in his first full 82-game season in Raleigh with 9 goals. This season, he doubled it and recorded 18. He’s having a great season and there will be people that want to see the Rangers 1st round pick from 2012 win the Stanley Cup. A lot of people would have rather seen him do it in Blue, but there will be some that want him to get a chance to hoist the trophy.