Rangers secure depth up front, add Copp, Motte

Ten players whose struggles could cost them this summer

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The New York Rangers completed two significant trades under the wire Monday, acquiring forward Andrew Copp and a 2023 sixth-round pick from the Winnipeg Jets and forward Tyler Motte from the Vancouver Canucks. The NHL’s trade deadline passed at 3 p.m. ET.

New York sent a 2023 fourth-round pick to the Canucks for Motte. The return for Copp was bit more extensive.

The Rangers traded to Winnipeg forward Morgan Barron, two conditional second-round picks and a 2023 fifth-round pick. The first conditional pick is New York’s own and becomes a first-round choice if the Rangers make the Eastern Conference Final and Copp plays in at least 50% of the games in both preceding rounds. The other second-round choice will either be St. Louis’ pick in 2022, or New York’s pick in 2023.

The Blues’ choice came to be New York’s property in the offseason trade that sent forward Pavel Buchnevich to St. Louis last July.

Both Copp and Motte are pending unrestricted free agents. The Rangers also grabbed defenseman Justin Braun from Philadelphia earlier in the day, in exchange for a 2023 third-round draft pick.

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New York didn’t have much cap space ahead of the deadline, making rentals like Copp, Motte and Braun ideal additions.

Copp, 27, has 13 goals and 35 points in 56 games for the Jets this season. A versatile middle-six skater, Copp is strong defensively and can play on the wing or at center. He’s struggled in season’s past to generate scoring chances consistently but has thrived on special teams and carried that over to improved even-strength play.

Motte, 27, is a bottom-six forward and strong penalty killer. He’s tallied seven goals and 15 points in 49 games this season, but Motte’s influence goes beyond the scoresheet. He can drive play better than most third- and fourth-line skaters, and he’s an excellent forechecker. Motte is the type of player teams often need during long playoff runs, capable of slotting in and having an impact even with limited minutes.

Barron, 23, was a sixth-round choice by the Rangers in 2017. He’s appeared in 18 NHL games, with two points.

The Rangers are battling with the Pittsburgh Penguins for the No. 2 postseason position in the Metropolitan Division. Entering play Monday, they both had 85 points in 63 games played. If the season ended Monday, the two would face each other in the first round.

Source: ESPN NHL

    

Author: Ellen Garcia