The Rangers get: Forward Patrick Kane (50% of salary retained by the Blackhawks, 25% by the Coyotes), defenseman Cooper Zech
The Blackhawks get: 2023 conditional second-round pick (becomes first-round pick if Rangers reach conference final), 2025 fourth-round pick, defenseman Andy Welinski, defenseman Vili Saarijarvi
Coyotes get: 2025 third-round pick
Shayna Goldman: It’s the same old story: the Rangers are trading a marquee name that’s past its prime. The main difference here, however, is that they don’t seek to be their peak game-breaker like other moves that fit that pattern. It was a secondary trade that came After already adding Vladimir Tarasenko and it didn’t cost that much.
Rangers have been busy but even with Tarasenko, Nikko Mikkola and Tyler Motte it looked like this team needed A more movement to solidify his top nine. Enter Kane – a player who basically manifested this trade.
There’s definitely a risk involved with this on-ice deal, which is why it helps New York that he’s not the only right winger they added before the deadline. Putting aside the off-ice issues surrounding the player, the hip injury is one concern, that his offense has faded is another, as are his defensive shortcomings. But a change of scenery changes the game here; Kane’s environment in Chicago has been horrible and it has only gotten tougher over the past year. He’ll have elite talent in New York, whether it’s Artemi Panarin or Mika Zibanejad, to help elevate his game closer to the heights everyone expects of him come playoff time. Already, in this struggling Blackhawks team, during his last game, he proved that he still had gas in the tank.
By adding Kane, Rangers have a lot more options within their roster to mix and match in the front nine. That’s a big difference from the last playoffs, when their versatility was much more limited. The defense may be a problem, between their two newly acquired right wingers, but this team has plenty of firepower and a solid goalkeeper who should win.
The comeback is disappointing for Chicago, but his options were limited. The player wanted a certain team, and the Blackhawks had to either find a way to make it happen or not trade him at all. It’s quite disappointing for management that their two biggest trading plays, Kane and Jonathan Toews, didn’t fetch what they were hoping for; the Blackhawks will only have a second conditional and a fourth to show for the pair. This only underscores why they should have been pushing for better returns on other trading coins over the past year instead of relying too heavily on this duo to bring back the perfect returns that could aid their rebuild.
Luszczyszyn House: Kane got his wish, he is a New York Ranger. We knew it would be since last week, but now it’s finally official and we can finally talk about what it all means.
You’ll hear a lot about Kane not being the player he once was. That he’s not as valuable as his reputation. That he is one of the worst defensive players in the league. That it is washed. That his hip injury made him a non-factor. That he will hurt the Rangers more than he will help.
There’s some truth to that, but much of it is exaggerated — a disservice to the talent Kane still brings to the ice. Yes, Kane’s numbers this year are low. His five-for-five rate fell below two for only the second time in his career. His expected goal ratio has dropped to an ugly 37% and the Blackhawks have just 41% of actual goals to show for it. His usually weak defensive numbers have reached new heights: 3.8 expected goals-against out of 60. That’s half a goal shy of the average Blackhawk.
But what did we really expect given the disaster that surrounded him? Kane helplessly gave his all for a team built to fail knowing his days with the only team he’s ever known were numbered? No human succeeds under these circumstances. When questions were raised about his inability to show off last week in Toronto, Kane scored seven goals and 10 points in four games. It was a demo week. To show that he still can. A prelude, a taste of what it can still be. Show on Broadway.
Rangers still get an elite offensive force, whether he’s shown much this year or not. In a team with so many weapons, Kane will thrive. The questions about his defense are very real, but in this team – with this supporting cast and this goalkeeper – they are less of a problem. Kane in an elite team is very different from Kane in one of the worst in the league. He will actually have help for the first time in a long time.
Kane is a perfect fit here. He knew it, and so did the Rangers. So much so that the end result for the Blackhawks is derisory: not even a first guarantee. Rangers and Kane had all the leverage, so it’s hard to blame Chicago too much here, but the Blackhawks still let Kane go for an obviously disappointing package. It affects their rating here.
The comeback isn’t the story here – although it’s good for Rangers that they didn’t have to pay a lot here to get their guy. The story is that Kane is where he wants to be and is ready to prove anyone who doubted him wrong. Forget this year’s numbers because they are about to change drastically. It’s show time.
(Photo: Melissa Tamez/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)