Things hit a bit of a lull Sunday morning on the NHL trade front, but the New York Rangers and Carolina Hurricanes quickly changed that.
The Hurricanes traded first-line center and captain Eric Staal to the Rangers in exchange for New York’s second-round picks in 2016 and 2017 and prospect Aleksi Saarela, the teams announced Sunday.
Staal, who played with his brother Jordan in Carolina, will join up with another sibling in Rangers defenseman Marc Staal. Eric Staal had 33 points (10 goals, 23 assists) in 63 games this season for the Hurricanes, who are four points out of a playoff spot despite being second-to-last in the Eastern Conference’s Metropolitan Division.
Carolina gets some solid future assets and a promising prospect in Saarela, who currently plays for the club team Assat in his native Finland. New York, meanwhile, receives a proven veteran in the 31-year-old Staal as it attempts to make a Stanley Cup run.
The Rangers are tied with the Florida Panthers for the second-best record in the East with 78 points but still are well behind the Washington Capitals, who have an NHL-best 94 points.
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