The New York Rangers Waited Too Long on a Chance for Goaltender Trade

New York Rangers, Alexandar Georgiev
Dec 8, 2019; Las Vegas, NV, USA; New York Rangers goaltender Alexandar Georgiev (40) makes a second period save against the Vegas Golden Knights at T-Mobile Arena. Mandatory Credit: Stephen R. Sylvanie-USA TODAY Sports

The New York Rangers lost a really good chance to take advantage of a nice situation in the trade market. After a 5-3 victory over the Toronto Maple Leafs, it is apparent that the Maple Leafs do not have a solid back up in Michael Hutchinson, as he was less than spectacular for the Leafs Wednesday night.

The time was right for the New York Rangers to trade Georgiev, and they lost it.

On Monday night, the Leafs lost their workhorse goalie Fredrick Anderson.  After dominating the Florida Panthers for most of the games, embattled backup goalie Michael Hutchinson allowed three goals on 13 shots and saw his save percentage dip to .886 on the season, fourth-worst in the NHL among those with at least 10 games played. After Anderson was ruled out for Wednesday night’s game, Hutchinson was thrust into the starting lineup and did not really produce in the loss. The Toronto media was more that was willing to give Hutchinson a boost, pointing out that he has won his last four starts with a .948 save percentage in those games.  After the Wednesday loss, the time is right to make a trade for the odd goaltender out, Alexandar Georgiev.

The Rangers need to realize that as the trade deadline gets closer, more and more goaltenders made be made available to contending teams.  Another goaltender that has been mentioned for a trade to Toronto is Los Angeles King goalie Jack Campbell. Many feel that Campbell could get dealt because the Kings have prospect Cal Petersen at AHL Ontario, and he’ll need a spot in the AHL or NHL next year.  However, the Rangers lost a chance to move Georgiev when just after their loss to the Rangers, the Leafs announced that they have acquired goaltender Jack Campbell and forward Kyle Clifford from the Los Angeles Kings in exchange for forward Trevor Moore, Columbus’ third-round pick in the 2020 NHL Draft and a conditional third-round pick in 2021.  Toronto being out now takes a big suitor and a lot of noise off the market and makes it likely that the Rangers will get less than market value for Georgiev, even if they can move him at all before the trade deadline.