The New York Rangers have traded forward Michael Grabner to the New Jersey Devils in exchange for prospect Yegor Rykov and a second-round pick in the 2018 NHL Entry Draft.
The deal came after both Grabner and Rick Nash were left off the Rangers’ starting roster Thursday night. There was speculation that both players were being kept out of action in order to facilitate a trade or two and it turns out that something was indeed in the works.
It’s no secret to anyone that the Blueshirts are selling ahead of Monday’s trade deadline and we can only wait until a Nash deal is done, but for now Grabner’s off Broadway.
The 30-year-old brings scoring, scoring and more scoring to the Devils, who are contending for the post-season and prepared to make a splash with a young, exciting roster.
Grabner will be an unrestricted free agent come this summer and he carries an affordable cap hit of $1.65 million, so it may be possible for New Jersey to work something out in order to establish a longer-term relationship.
Or Grabner may be a rental.
Either way, the forward has 25 goals and six helpers in 59 games for New York this season and that’s going to tilt the scales in the Devils’ favour rather heavily.
New Jersey dropped a 4-2 decision to the Minnesota Wild on Thursday night ahead of the trade’s announcement, but there’s still fourth in the Metropolitan Division and well within the hunt for post-season success.
They’re five points up on the Columbus Blue Jackets and four behind the Philadelphia Flyers.
The Rangers, meanwhile, sit dead last in the division and are just a point up on the Detroit Red Wings.
Right now, it appears to be only a matter of time before another trade is made and another Blueshirt is dealt.