The New York Rangers have made several transactions, one including Derek Stepan, since they were knocked out of the Stanley Cup Playoffs.
The New York Rangers were knocked out of the playoffs by the Ottawa Senators and, obviously, they were not happy how things ended. As the team concluded their exit interviews, players and staff had to know that changes would be coming. This is a proud organization and an original six team, so change had to be anticipated.
The process began on May 16 when the Rangers announced that the were relieving coaching duties for head coach Ken Gernander of the AHL Hartford Wolf Pack. They also announced that Chris Drury, the former Colorado Avalanche, Calgary Flame, Buffalo Sabre and New York Ranger, would be named General Manager of the Hartford Wolfpack.
- Jun. 12, the Rangers name Keith McCambridge the new Head Coach of the Hartford Wolfpack.
- June 14, The Rangers agreed to terms with F Matt Puempel. Then the first big change of the year comes as the Rangers announced they have bought out the contract of veteran defenseman Dan Girardi. Team also announced that they have named former Rangers Jed Ortmeyer, Director of Player Development and Steve Eminger Professional Scout.
- Jun. 21, The NHL Expansion Draft is held in Las Vegas, Nevada as the Vegas Golden Knights select their team. The Rangers lost highly valued C Oscar Lindberg.
- June 23, The afternoon of the NHL Entry Draft, the Rangers make the move that will help clear up more room with their salary cap. C Derek Stepan and G Antti Raanta are traded to the Arizona Coyotes for D Anthony DeAngelo and a 2017 First round draft pick, seventh overall.
- At the NHL Entry Draft, the Rangers use the number 7 pick overall and select C Lias Andersson and with the 21st pick overall select LW Filip Chytil.
- June 24, Word comes out the assistant coach Jeff Beukeboom will no longer be the defensive coach on the bench and will be replaced with veteran coach Lindy Ruff.
A very busy month of time has passed for the Rangers. It’s great to see the organization acknowledging that they had issues that needed to be addressed and then did something about it. The moves completed individually were significant, but as a hole shows the team is expecting bigger things next season.
The player transactions, for the time being, have created some problems too. The team now is down 2 starting centers, a starting defenseman, and one of the best backups in the NHL last year. It has also created some much-needed salary cap space which will help team possibly sign Brendan Smith and certainly gives them a great chance to go after a top free agent as in Kevin Shattenkirk.
All this work completed and free agency doesn’t begin until Jul. 1. GM Gorton has been a busy man.