NHL Trade Rumors: Rick Nash Traded to New York Rangers

Tom Urtz Jr.@@TomUrtzJrContributor IJuly 23, 2012

GLENDALE, AZ - APRIL 03:  Rick Nash #61 of the Columbus Blue Jackets in action during the NHL game against the Phoenix Coyotes at Jobing.com Arena on April 3, 2012 in Glendale, Arizona.  (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)
Christian Petersen/Getty Images

Rick Nash has been finally traded to the New York Rangers after months of speculation. Darren Dreger of TSN broke the news early on Monday that a trade had been made and that all the details were being ironed out. The deal is now official and Scott Howson really backed down from his outrageous demands.

Dubinsky, Anisimov, Erixon and a 1st for Rick Nash.

— Darren Dreger (@DarrenDreger) July 23, 2012

The trade was Artem Anisimov, Brandon Dubinsky, Tim Erixon and a first round draft selection in exchange for Rick Nash and a third round draft selection. (@APortzline)

This trade is an absolute steal for Glen Sather. Losing Tim Erixon, a budding offensive defenseman prospect, is tough, but given the Rangers top-four defensemen, this won't be a huge loss. Dylan McIlrath is still in the system and he is another top prospect for the Blueshirts.

Artem Anisimov and Brandon Dubinsky are two secondary players who will bolster Columbus' forward depth but they are not in Rick Nash's league. 

The Rangers ultimately waited out Howson and acquired Nash without dealing Derek Stepan, Chris Kreider, Ryan McDonagh or Michael Del Zotto. Nash's acquisiton gives the Rangers an increased offensive punch and tons of depth at left wing.

The Rangers will have a top-six that will feature Nash, Brad Richards, Marian Gaborik, Derek Stepan, Chris Kreider and Carl Hagelin for the time being.

Shane Doan is another player the Rangers have been pursuing and after this trade, it would make tons of sense for Doan to join the Blueshirts.

Right now things are really looking up for the Rangers. They were able to part with bottom-six players like Anisimov and Dubinsky after signing depth players like Jeff Halpern and Aaron Asham early on in free agency.

Now that Rick Nash is a Ranger, it is safe to say that there has been a significant shift of power in the Eastern Conference, and they are now a legitimate contender.

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