The 2022 NHL Trade Deadline was one of the most exciting deadlines in recent memory, especially for the New York Rangers. Many big names were moved, including almost every player that was expected to be moved. Big names like Hampus Lindholm, Marc-Andre Fleury, and Rickard Rakell were moved. J. T. Miller, arguably the biggest name rumored to be on the market, was about the only big-name player not moved.
In years past, the New York Rangers have not been strangers when it comes to making moves at the deadline. This year was no different. The Rangers acquired Andrew Copp from the Winnipeg Jets, Justin Braun from the Philadelphia Flyers and Tyler Motte from the Vancouver Canucks.
In an unexpected decision from what the fans expected, Alexandar Georgiev was not traded. I say it was unexpected because everyone thought the goaltender would be moved. However, his poor play leading up to the deadline gave him low market value and the Rangers elected to keep him for their Stanley Cup run.
Andrew Copp is one of the best utility players in the NHL. Copp is a big mid-six LW/C who can play reliable hockey on the PP, PK, and at even strength. Since being traded to the Rangers, Copp has played on the third and second lines. Copp has also played on the PP and PK, all while being over a point per game with the Rangers. Even though he is a pending UFA, he is a great addition to the Rangers and is fitting well already.
Frank Vatrano, although not a deadline day acquisition, still qualifies as a deadline move. Playing on the top line, Vatrano has been deadly. He is also like Copp–a versatile player who has been playing great hockey. Both Copp and Vatrano have been over a point per game with the Rangers. Heading into the dog days of the regular season, adding the fresh legs and new faces of Vatrano and Copp will help the Rangers have some new life in these important games.
Justin Braun, although useful, will not do much for the Rangers. Braun is a really good defensive defenseman in a third-pairing role. He is actually one of the best bottom-pairing defensemen in the NHL and has every advanced stat to back it up too. The problem is that he is an RHD and the Rangers already have Braden Schneider for that role. Since being traded to New York, Braun and Schnider have had to split games. However, come playoff time, Braun’s experience will greatly help in New York.
Tyler Motte is a 4th liner and a pretty great one at that. Since coming to New York, Motte has been great for the Rangers in his role-player position. Playing PK time and fourth-line minutes, he is a great addition playing in every game and being reliable in anchoring the fourth line.
With all the Rangers have added, they look better than ever. From big-name players to bottom-line/pairing players, the Rangers are tough to play against up and down the lineup. Having great goaltending, a great 12 forwards up front, and a rock-solid D-core, every team will be scared to play this sleeper cup contender team.
If you want to take a look at some of the stat cards of the players we talked about, you can check out JFreshhockey on Twitter.