Patrick Kane has reportedly been acquired by the New York Rangers for a conditional second-round pick and a fourth-round pick in 2023. Kane was in the final year of his contract with the Chicago Blackhawks, where he won three Stanley Cups. Kane has amassed 16 goals and 29 assists in 54 games this season.
How this impacts the Rangers
After reaching the conference final last year, the Rangers are undoubtedly pushing their chips to the middle once again. They are currently third in the Metropolitan division with a record of 34-17-19. As we saw in the playoffs, though, Igor Shesterkin has the ability to will this team to great heights. They were missing scoring, but have added two highly-skilled wingers prior to the trade deadline, with Vladimir Tarasenko and now Patrick Kane.
The Rangers have built on their depth, and with the star talent they possess with defenseman Adam Fox and forward Mika Zibanejad leading the way, they’re officially built for a deep postseason run. It’ll come down to how head coach Gerard Gallant wants to organize his lineup. Forward Jimmy Vesey projects to slide off the first line, potentially paving way for Kane. It would seem unlikely for Gallant to dismantle the second forward line of Vincent Trocheck, Artemi Panarin, and Tarasenko.
With the skilled youth of Alexis Lafreniere and Kaapo Kakko on their third line as well, the Rangers are one of the deepest teams in the league. Not to mention the aforementioned high potential of goaltender Shesterkin. The Rangers could be a real force in the East.
How this impacts the Blackhawks
Chicago has been in a semi-rebuild for a few years now. After departures like Kirby Dach and Dylan Strome, they continue to find themselves in a similar position, a hopeless one. The Blackhawks are 21-33-5 with no plans of post-season play this year. It appears that the dynasty is completely over with the departure of Kane and the eventual departure of Jonathan Toews. Their best hope will come if they land the No. 1 overall draft pick in the 2023 NHL Entry Draft. Connor Bedard could be a franchise changer.
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