Rangers Officially Make Big Trade Deadline Splash to Boost Cup Odds

The New York Rangers have made their first trade ahead of Friday's trade deadline with more moves expected to come.
Seattle Kraken v Calgary Flames
Seattle Kraken v Calgary Flames / Derek Leung/GettyImages

The New York Rangers have traded for Seattle Kraken center Alexander Wennberg in exchange for a second-round pick in 2024 and a 4th round pick in 2025. The move is likely the first of two moves as the Rangers have now addressed their center issues caused by the injury to Filip Chytil.

The move was inevitable as the Rangers have been rumored as the favorites to land Wennberg since Seattle scratched him from the lineup with the intent to move on from him.

On the season Wennberg has recorded 9 goals and 16 assists in 60 games played in Seattle. While the stats won't jump off of the page the teams that were in on Wennberg should tell the story as the Rangers were competing with the Bruins and the Avalanche for the veteran center. Wennberg also can play on either wing creating several possibilities in the Rangers line pairings.

The move for Wennberg isn't for him to play on the top line, while he may spend some time with Zibanejad and Kreider he'll likely find a permanent home in the bottom six. The move will likely result in Wennberg replacing Kaapo Kakko on the third line with Will Cuylle and Johnny Brodzinski creating a defensive shutdown line for the playoffs. If the Rangers don't acquire a top-line right wing we'll likely see Kaapo Kaako play a majority of his time on the top line.

The Rangers after getting Wennberg's salary down to $2.5 million now can address one of two needs on the roster. Top line right wing is the most glaring need on the team as it has been nearly all season, worsening with the injury to Blake Wheeler. The names to watch if the Rangers add a right wing are Frank Vatrano, Anthony Duclair, or Jake Guentzel.

The team may also need to find an upgrade over Erik Gustafsson who started the season hot but has slowed down and his play has become a significant concern. If the Rangers add a defenseman some of the names to watch include Joel Edmundson, Erik Johnson, and David Savard.

New York Rangers Should Have More Moves on the Horizon

This move is most likely the first of a multitude of moves for the New York Rangers at the deadline. The Rangers have been rumored as players for Frank Vatrano, Alex Tuch, and Jake Guentzel of major name value. The trade deadline is Friday afternoon giving Chris Drury plenty of time to examine the market and find a top-line right wing. Who the Rangers add will likely come down to asking price with high reported prices tagged to a majority of the wings on the market.

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