For their first act of the day, the New York Rangers sent underperforming forward Mike Rupp to the Minnesota Wild for forwards Darroll Powe and Nick Palmieri. The money is a virtual swap with roughly $1.5 million moving on both sides.
It was becoming clear Rupp had no place on this team. Since signing with the Rangers, his only major contribution was the Winter Classic, and his lack of ability to play within the system was a hindrance on the club. Sather did a nice job getting premium value for an aging player. Let’s check out the newest Blueshirts.
Powe, 27, primarily plays center and is best remembered for the three seasons he spent with the Flyers between 2008 and 2011. He is not a scorer, but has a skill set that fits perfectly with the Rangers game plan. His speed makes him a great penalty killer and aggressive forechecker, while he loves to rack up the hits and blocked shots.
Powe has had a rough go of things early this season registering 0 points in eight games and recently being named a healthy scratch. Over the first four years of his career he has scored between 11-17 points with 150+ hits and 40+ blocked shots.
Palmieri, a New York native, is a big body at 6’3″, 230 lbs. and a former third round pick of the New Jersey Devils. To go along with the size, he has an abundance of raw talent that he has yet to be able to put together. In 87 professional games he has 13 goals and 12 assists with just 83 hits and 15 blocked shots.
Palmieri recently fell out over favor with the suits in Minnesota after a contract hold out over the summer and then not reporting on time to the Wild’s AHL affiliate after he was cut during training camp. Those kinds of things are not going to fly with the likes of John Tortorella and James Dolan, so don’t go buying his jersey unless he undergoes a major attitude adjustment quickly. At just 23 years old he is definitely worth the flier, but I am not sure how well he will fit into the organization.
Shortly after the trade the Rangers announced that, despite his good showing with the team, Benn Ferriero has been demoted and JT Miller and Brandon Mashinter have been called up.
I recently said that I would most likely wait 7-10 games to call up Miller, but the Rangers wasted no time in promoting their 2011 first round pick. I have no problem with the Rangers wanting to take a look at Miller while Chris Kreider and Ryan Callahan are out. He may not have a big window to produce, however, if he pays early dividends and sticks with the team when those two return then the Rangers become one of the deepest teams in the East.
Since being acquired from the Sharks a couple weeks ago, Mashinter has been on fire. In eight games he has three goals, four assists, two fights, and 14 total penalty minutes. I look at the schedule and see the Devils and Islanders next and understand why the Rangers would demote Ferriero to make room for Mashinter. At 6’4″, 230 lbs. Mashinter can replace the size and physicality of Rupp while bringing some skill. And what better time to use him then while he is locked in.
A lot of changes for a team who just played a hell of a game, but every move is understandable. I also just got a whole lot more excited for tomorrow night’s game and JT Miller’s debut.