This year’s NHL trade deadline came and went on March 1 with both New York hockey franchises making little to no moves. The New York Rangers acquired Detroit Red Wings defenseman Brendan Smith while the New York Islanders chose to stand pat. Such hasn’t been the case in the past for either team. Here are a handful of notable deadline deals both squads have made.
Martin St. Louis for 2014 second-round pick, 2015 first-round pick and right wing Ryan Callahan
This March 5, 2014, deal resulted in the Rangers and Tampa Bay Lightning swapping captains. While St. Louis finished the regular season in a lackluster fashion, his mother’s unexpected death during the Eastern Conference Semifinals against the Pittsburgh Penguins found his new teammates rallying around him and the diminutive winger netted eight goals and put up 15 points in the playoffs. He led the Rangers to the Stanley Cup finals, where they fell to the Los Angeles Kings in five games.
Butch Goring for right wing Billy Harris and defenseman Dave Lewis
On March 10, 1980, the New York Islanders acquired scrappy center Butch Goring from the Los Angeles Kings and in the process, added a key component to the team’s four-Cup run. The Isles won their last 12 regular season games with Goring putting up 19 points in 21 playoff games in 1980. The following year, the Manitoba native raised the bar by racking up 20 points in the playoffs and winning the Conn Smythe Trophy to go with another Stanley Cup.
Glenn Anderson for right wing Mike Gartner; Stephane Matteau and Brian Noonan for right wing Tony Amonte/rights for left wing Matt Oates; Craig McTavish for center Todd Marchant
On March 21, 1994, then-Rangers GM Neil Smith became quite the horse trader at the deadline, executing five separate trades with the most notable being the above swaps. The idea was that coach Mike Keenan was looking for a degree of aggressiveness that he felt he’d be getting with the new players, who were coming from Captain Mark Messier’s old stomping grounds in Edmonton and Keenan’s prior coaching stop with the Chicago Blackhawks. The Rangers wound up winning their first Stanley Cup in 54 years.
Ryan Smyth for Robert Nilsson, center Ryan O’ Marra, and a 2007 first-round pick
When the Islanders pulled the trigger to get Ryan Smyth from the Edmonton Oilers on Feb. 27, it was the idea that this elite rental player would provide leadership to the sixth place New York squad going into the playoffs. He delivered by putting up 15 points in 18 regular season games before coming up with another four points in the five-game first round playoff exit to the Buffalo Sabres.