Rangers Eye Surprising Player in Draft Trade-Up

The Rangers, after winning the Presidents’ Trophy and losing in the Eastern Conference Final, will make their first draft pick at 30th overall on Friday.

But GM Chris Drury wants to trade that pick and Kaapo Kakko to move up in the draft. Kakko recently signed a one-year, $2.4M deal, which many think increases his trade value because teams now know his cost.

Kakko was a second overall pick in 2019 after a strong season in Finland. The Rangers hoped he would become a core player, but while he’s shown potential over five NHL seasons, consistency has been elusive .

In 2022-23, Kakko had career highs with 18 goals and 22 assists. Fans thought he might finally break out. But this year he struggled with only 13 goals and six assists in 61 games, playing just over 13 minutes per game—the lowest of his career. In the playoffs, his time dropped even more with just one goal and one assist in 15 games.

Trade Speculation:

Despite recent struggles, other teams might believe a change of scenery could help Kakko find his form again. The Rangers hope this perception will allow them to move up in the draft on Friday.

Fans might feel anxious about trading such a young player who still has potential.

Sometimes trades like these can be risky but also rewarding if they work out well for both sides involved.

What do you think? Should they make the trade or keep Kakko?

Alex Thompson
Alex Thompson
Alex Thompson is a Senior Writer for HockeyMonitor. With a background in Sports Media, Alex joined the team in 2022. He focuses on providing the latest hockey news, game scores, and fresh NHL trade rumors.

Related NHL News