This may sound a little weird because hs is hurt right now after an awkward collision with the end boards in a game a while ago now, but Kaapo Kakko may be someone the Rangers want to consider moving at this deadline if they are going to open the door to becoming a Stanley Cup champion. A young underperforming player with good trade value may net the Rangers quite the return, as well as open up the cap space they may need to make a bigger deal occur.
Kakko is not having the best of times as a member of the Blueshirts. In just 20 games this season, the Finnish right winger has tallied just two goals and an assist for three points. It's been quite a lean year for production from the former second overall pick of the New York Rangers. Now he's out with injury, Kakko is expected to return before the end of the year, meaning that the Rangers cannot just bury his $2.1 million deal on LTIR and use the cap space elsewhere.
Because of his former draft pedigree, there will be teams that view the Finn as quite the asset if the Rangers were to make him available. There's a sense of anticipation on the future of Kakko. It feels like there's more to give with the winger, but this is his fifth season in the NHL, and he's been plagued by injuries and cold streaks throughout his career in New York. With his deal expiring at the end of the year, he will be an RFA with aribtration rights. If the deal is there for a good, cost-controlled winger, perhaps Kakko could be moved out to make room.
It should go without saying that not everyone I've talked about will move. It'll only happen with maximum one of these players, in the event that a deal can be found to help the Rangers improve the squad. There's a lot to touch on when we are talking about the upcoming deadline for the organization. As we get closer to the date, we will have more to discuss, but for now, who do you think could be moved out?