Rick Nash Traded to New York Rangers for Anisimov, Dubinsky, Erixon, Pick

Rick Nash was traded to the New York Rangers for Artem Anisimov, Brandon Dubinsky, Tim Erixon, and a 1st round pick. The price on Nash fell and the Rangers got the best of the Columbus Blue Jackets.

Rick Nash was rumored to be commanding a far greater package than the Columbus Blue Jackets and GM Scott Howson ultimately received. Ultimately, the Blue Jackets send Rick Nash, defensive prospect Steven Delisle, and a conditional third round pick to the New York Rangers for a package of relatively unimpressive prospects. Nash is one of the most prolific scorers in the league who, when surrounded by talent in New York, should be able to produce even more. At nearly a point per game for the lowly Blue Jackets, the New York Rangers have one of the best scorers in hockey – and they barely had to sacrifice anything.

Brandon Dubinsky is coming off a disastrous season in which he scored just ten goals. Two seasons ago, Dubinsky was one of the top young players in the Rangers organization, producing 54 points in 77 games. Last year, Brandon Dubinsky simply never put it together. At age 26, Dubinsky’s stunted development makes him easy to part with. Artem Anisimov is a bit younger, a better two-way player, and leaves a bit of a void up the middle for the New York Rangers. However, his 36 points last season are highly replaceable and the void left by his defensive presence will be accounted for by the replacement the Rangers toss into the John Tortorella system. Tim Erixon is a young and promising defenseman, but in a system loaded with defensive prospects the Rangers could afford to part with Erixon to bring in a player like Rick Nash. Ultimately, the package is comprised of a two-way center, an aging Dubinsky coming off a disaster season, a prospect and a pick. Compared to the package Scott Howson was originally demanding, the New York Rangers got Rick Nash at a bargain.

From a Columbus Blue Jackets perspective, parting with Rick Nash made the most sense. The Blue Jackets are likely beginning a rebuilding effort that will include a roster overhaul. The Blue Jackets could not continue to pay Rick Nash nearly eight million dollars while the team continues to flounder. Keeping Nash on the roster would inhibit progress, and despite the seemingly disappointing package the Blue Jackets received, Columbus is finally moving forward. With the Philadelphia Flyers pursuing Shea Weber and the rest of the teams on Rick Nash’s list lacking the prospects of the Rangers, this trade was inevitable. While the Blue Jackets could have gotten more, trading Nash to the Rangers was the best option for Columbus.

Ultimately, the Rangers are big winners in this deal. Brandon Dubinsky’s well-documented struggles last season may signal the climax of a disappointing career. He’s talented, but it will take an epic turnaround for Dubinsky to be an asset for the Blue Jackets. Anisimov is a solid center but will never produce like Rick Nash. Dumping a defensive prospect like Tim Erixon might hurt some teams, but the Rangers blue line is loaded with young talent. Derek Stepan, Ryan McDonagh, and Marc Staal were triumphantly retained. The Rangers were even able to milk the Blue Jackets for a conditional third-round pick. The trade immediately gives the New York Rangers one of the best top-lines in hockey, potentially pairing Nash with Brad Richards and Marion Gaborik. On a team strapped for offense, this couldn’t have gone better for New York.

Mark Donatiello
Follow me on Twitter:  @FasterHockey ...read more

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