Sunday, February 28, 2016

Rangers Land Eric Staal for Draft Picks and Prospect

The New York Rangers landed a big prize just ahead of tomorrow's trade deadline, pulling Eric Staal for prospect Aleksi Saarela plus a second-round draft pick in each of the next two drafts.

Staal, 31, has spent his whole career with the Hurricanes, amassing 322 career goals and 775 points. He won the Stanley Cup in Carolina in 2006 and has 19 playoff goals in 43 games.

Though his numbers are down this season (10-23-33), Staal is expected to step in with the Rangers in a leadership role, and he'll no doubt be energized by joining a team with post-season hopes. The Thunder Bay, Ontario native has not been to the playoffs since 2009.

According to sources, Carolina is picking up half of Staal's remaining salary for this season:

The Rangers are hoping to win now (they've reached the Conference finals in three of the last four seasons, and made the Stanley Cup final in 2014), and they haven't been shy about dealing away draft picks to make it happen. According to General Fanager, the team has only one pick in the first two rounds of the next two drafts (a first-rounder in the 2017 draft).

Staal, who waived his no-trade clause to allow the deal to get done, will leave his brother Jordan in Carolina to play alongside his brother Marc in New York. Reportedly, Staal would only waive the no-movement clause to go to New York, which limited what the Hurricanes could get in return.

Aleksi Saarela, the Finish prospect that come over in the deal from the Rangers, scored seven points in seven games at the World Juniors this year. The 19-year-old was a third-round pick in the 2015 draft.