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Rick Nash is lonely in Columbus. A ticket to New York might cheer him up.
A more creative option would be to trade with the Blue Jackets for Rick Nash. He has scored 30 or more goals in each of the past five seasons, and has averaged 34 goals a year following his rookie campaign.
Nash will turn 28 in June and has spent his entire career in Columbus. He has been to the playoffs only once, when the Blue Jackets were swept in the first round by Detroit in 2008-09. Nash is hungry for a winner, and the Rangers have some pieces the Blue Jackets might want.
The Rangers inquired about Nash when he was dangled on the open market before the trade deadline. According to Larry Brooks of the New York Post:
Sources familiar with the parameters of the discussions between Sather and Columbus counterpart Scott Howson have told The Post the Rangers have designated Ryan McDonagh, Michael Del Zotto, 2009 first-rounder Chris Kreider and 2011 first-rounder J.T. Miller as untouchables...
It is believed that Sather, who is not fazed by the ramifications of adding Nash’s contract that runs through 2017-18 at a cap hit of $7.8 million per year, is prepared to send Brandon Dubinsky, Christian Thomas and perhaps 2010 first-rounder Dylan McIlrath, plus a first-round pick to Columbus.
That package wasn't enough to entice Columbus to deal. Rangers fans should give kudos to Sather for holding onto Chris Kreider. The rookie forward looked lethal in this year's playoffs, setting an NHL record by scoring five goals without ever having played a regular-season game in the league.
Nash is still on the block and Columbus is looking for defense. A slightly sweeter package from the Rangers consisting of Brandon Dubinsky, Dylan McIlrath, Michael Del Zotto and a draft pick or two could get the deal done.
It would rid the Rangers of the disappointing Dubinsky (10 goals in 2011-12) while he still has some value, and they may be willing to part with Del Zotto in light of their wealth of young defensemen. Tim Erixon could be due for a promotion in his place.