The New York Rangers traded left-winger Pavel Buchnevich to the St. Louis Blues on Friday afternoon in exchange for left-winger Sammy Blais and a second-round pick in the 2022 NHL Draft.
Buchnevich, a pending restricted free agent with arbitration rights, recorded 20 goals and 48 points in 54 games last season, his third in the past four with at least 43 points. He tallied his second 20-goal campaign after posting 21 in 2018-19.
In 301 career regular-season games with the Rangers, the 26-year-old has recorded 79 goals and 195 points.
Blais, 25, recorded eight goals and 15 points in 36 games last season and one goal in four 2021 Stanley Cup Playoff games.
In 119 career NHL regular-season games, all with the Blues, Blais has recorded 17 goals and 35 points. He earned a goal and three points in 15 games during the Blues’ run to the Stanley Cup in 2019.
The Rangers currently have $21,875,198 in cap space after acquiring Blais, who has one season remaining at $1.5 million before becoming eligible for restricted free agency.
Blais averaged 12:04 per game last season.
The Rangers’ offense arguably gets worse after they averaged 3.14 goals-per-game last season as does their power play, which converted at a 20.7% rate (14th), and penalty kill, which finished with an 82.3% efficiency (10th). Buchnevich averaged 2:14 on the power play (fifth among forwards) and 2:19 on the penalty kill (second).
Goaltender Igor Shesterkin (arbitration-eligible), center Filip Chytil, and defenseman Libor Hajek can become restricted free agents on Wednesday.
— JFresh (@JFreshHockey) July 23, 2021
By Harrison Brown