As the NHL trade deadline looms, the New York Rangers have a lot of work to do. Read to find out who some potential targets for the Blueshirts may be.
Three Players the Rangers Should Target Before the Trade Deadline
With the NHL trade deadline less than two weeks away, it’s crunch time for the New York Rangers. They find themselves in a very good position right now, tied for 2nd in the Metropolitan Division with the Pittsburgh Penguins and six points behind the Carolina Hurricanes for division control.
At 77 points, the Rangers’ playoff hopes are not in question, but their ability to win when the postseason comes certainly is. There’s no doubt that the Rangers have a very solid team, and right now is the perfect time to add to that, as New York looks to add several pieces before the trade deadline passes.
First on the Rangers’ list of potential pickups should be Buffalo Sabers’ veteran forward, Cody Eakin. Eakin isn’t a guy who’s going to be a huge goal scorer but his veteran presence is something that could be hugely beneficial for a young Rangers squad.
Eakin will come cheap as he hasn’t had a particularly impressive season, but is a good faceoff winner as he has 347 faceoffs won in 53 games played this season. He’d be an excellent addition to the Rangers 3rd or 4th line on the attack and is a guy who can create offensive opportunities for his teammates while providing that veteran presence that the Rangers are in need of.
It also just makes sense for the Sabers to part with Eakin as he is finishing off the last year of his contract and will likely not re-sign with the Sabers. The Rangers would be getting a good faceoff winner and generally experienced forward while the Sabers can start their rebuild process.
Eakin’s numbers don’t represent his value as he’s suffered from the handicap of being on an incredibly dysfunctional franchise in Buffalo the last couple seasons. If traded to the Rangers, it’s very likely that his play will improve as he is traded to a much more adept team.
Next on the Rangers’ list of potential trade pieces should be San Jose Sharks’ forward Tomas Hertl. Hertl is 28 and has been one of the best players on the Sharks this season and in general over the last few years.
He’s 2nd on the team in goals and points with 22 and 42, respectively. Hertl is also an alternate captain for San Jose so he’d be bringing that experienced leadership with him to New York if traded. He was a 2020 All-Star and if Hertl joined the Rangers, he’d already be tied with Mika Zibanejad in goals and would come in as the 2nd best center on the team.
He won’t come nearly as cheap as Eakin, but that’s because his value on the ice is much higher. Hertl could very well be a guy who helps the Rangers make a deep playoff run this spring.
To bolster an already impressive defense, the Rangers would be wise to also target Seattle Kraken defender, Mark Giordano. Giordano has been playing in the NHL since 2006, so his veteran presence and experience are without question.
He’s 38 years old and on an up and coming team in the Kraken, so this is definitely a trade that makes sense for both parties. Giordano would come in as the Rangers’ 3rd most valuable defender behind Adam Fox and Jacob Trouba, so he would definitely see a lot of time on the ice.
Giordano is a former All-Star and winner of both the James Norris Memorial Trophy and Mark Messier Leadership Award. All of those awards and highlights have come since the 2018-19 season, so the best part of Giordano’s career may very well still be in front of him. His defensive play is something that has the potential to keep the Rangers in control of the puck in the postseason and win big games down the stretch.