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Rangers Gift Jets a First Round Pick with Victory Over Hurricanes

Photo by Steve Mitchell

Rangers Gift Jets a First Round Pick with Victory Over Hurricanes

The Winnipeg Jets have earned an additional first round pick in the 2022 NHL Draft thanks to some crafty negotiating and a strong playoff performance from the New York Rangers.

Back on March 21, Jets’ general manager Kevin Cheveldayoff sent Andrew Copp to the Rangers alongside a 2023 sixth round pick for prospect Morgan Barron, two conditional second round selections and a 2023 fifth rounder. New York’s production in the postseason and Copp’s play has helped the Jets with regards to Cheveldayoff’s added stipulation to the 2022 second round selection in play.

If the New York were to advance to the Eastern Conference Final and if Copp skated in at minimum half of his club’s postseason games, that 2022 second round pick would become the Rangers’ 2022 first round pick at the upcoming draft.

On Monday night in Carolina, the Copp and the Rangers did just that.

Needing a full seven-game series to beat out the Hurricanes, New York did so in stellar fashion, ousting the home team 6-2 in a game that Carolina would like to soon forget. Copp picked up a goal and an assist in a winning effort.

In losing star rookie Seth Jarvis early on a hit by former Jets defenceman Jacob Trouba, the Canes didn’t stand a chance.

Later, it was backup goaltender Antti Raanta that left the game injured following a stretch play to which he appeared to tweak something in either his leg or groin.

Already holding a 2-0 lead, the Rangers pumped another two goals past relief netminder Pyotr Kochetkov before five minutes had even ticked off the clock in the third period.

New York ended up finishing off Carolina 6-2.

Now, getting back to the trade, Copp, who is in a contract year, put up a career-best 13 goals and 35 points in 56 games for Winnipeg prior to the deadline. With New York, he added another eight goals and 18 points in just 16 games before the playoffs began. In the postseason, he skated in 14 games through two rounds, scoring six times and adding another six assists for 12 total points.

With New York needing seven games to win both their first and second round matchups, and with Copp having skated in all 14 games, all terms of the conditional second-to-first round pick have been met.

Should the Rangers somehow manage to get to a potential Game 7 of the Stanley Cup Final with Copp not having played any of those games, the Jets would still get the draft pick, as that would be a total of 28 postseason games for New York, with Copp appearing in 14, or 50 percent.

Jets fans can most certainly chalk this trade up as a win. Not only did the club acquire a first round pick, a second round pick, and bump up a sixth from a fifth, Winnipeg brought prospect Morgan Barron to town, who has already proven his abilities late in the season with both the Jets and Manitoba Moose.

The Jets will now pick at No. 14 overall this July in Montreal, before making a pick later in the first round. Depending on how New York fares, the selection will be somewhere from No. 29-32 to close out the first round.

Carter Brooks - Associate Editor of Game On Magazine - is a news writer and sports columnist situated in Winnipeg, MB. On top of reading and writing, his favourite pastimes include camping, car-modification projects and coaching hockey. Carter can be reached at carterbrooks1994@gmail.com or on Twitter at @GameOnHockey.

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