As the roster freeze ahead of the incoming expansion draft sets in, a few last-minute deals continue to flood in.
The New York Rangers decided to get a head start on their free-agent shopping on Saturday afternoon by acquiring forward, Barclay Goodrow from the Tampa Bay Lightning in exchange for a 2022 seventh-round pick.
Goodrow, of course, is a pending unrestricted free agent this summer, meaning that the Rangers acquired only his signing rights in this deal and now have the exclusive privilege to negotiate a potential extension ahead of the July 28th free agency period.
In addition to acquiring Goodrow’s rights, the Rangers also made another minor move by dealing defenceman, Brett Howden to the Vegas Golden Knights in exchange for a fourth-round pick in the 2022 NHL Entry Draft and defenceman, Nick DeSimone.
Goodrow, who is coming off consecutive Stanley Cups with the Lightning after joining the team at the 2020 trade deadline, put up 20 points in 55 games in 2021 as a key component of Tampa Bay’s stellar third line. The 28-year-old is precisely what this up-and-coming Rangers team seems to need, an extremely effective middle-six forward with stellar underlying numbers and the ability to contribute up and down the lineup.
It’s not a surprise, then, that the Rangers would pay assets for an exclusive negotiating window with Goodrow, with Sportsnet’s Chris Johnston reporting that teams are willing to offer him deals of upwards of six years were the Toronto-native to hit the open market.
With 11 days to find common ground on an extension, the clock is ticking for Chris Drury and his front office staff.