In a deal with the Arizona Coyotes, who have had a busy day already, the Rangers picked up defenseman Anthony DeAngelo and the 7th overall pick while giving the Coyotes Derek Stepan and Antti Raanta. However, the Rangers were looking to move the 27-year-old since they were eliminated from the playoffs.
Just as important, Stepan has four years left on a contract with a $6.5 million annual salary-cap hit. "We're confident that he can emerge as an excellent starting goalie for us". In Arizona, Stepan will play on one of Arizona's top two lines and will help them reach the salary floor.
Raanta went 16-8-2 in 30 games, with four shutouts and a 2.26 goals-against average in 30 games as Henrik Lundqvist's backup. At the very worse, Raanta is a very affordable backup, making $1 million next season.
Now two leaders and alternate captains in Stepan and Dan Girardi are gone from the Rangers as Jeff Gorton tries to find the right winning formula, clearly willing to break up the core from the last several years to do so. The Coyotes have now acquired goaltender Antti Raanta and forward Derek Stepan from the New York Rangers. Prior to Friday afternoon's trade to the desert, the veteran center had spent his entire seven-year National Hockey League career in the "Big Apple" as a member of the Rangers.
NY also now owns two first-round picks in the 2017 draft at No. 7 and No. 21 and acquires a 21-year-old defenseman in DeAngelo who was a former first-round selection (No. 19 overall) of the Tampa Bay Lightning.