The New York Rangers have traded forward Pavel Buchnevich to the St. Louis Blues for Sammy Blais and a 2022 2nd round pick.
Buchnevich is a restricted free agent.
The 26-year old Buchnevich was drafted 75th overall in the 3rd round of the 2013 draft by the Rangers.
The 25-year old Blais was drafted 176th overall in the 6th round of the 2014 draft by the Blues. He has a $1.5 million salary cap hit.
Thoughts from the media
Andy Strickland: “Blues have had extension talks with Buchnevich throughout the afternoon. ”
Dan Rosen: “Another way of looking at it is the Rangers clearly felt Buchnevich was was expendable. They weren’t going to trade him for a player like him. They’re addressing other needs to fill out a team. You don’t have to like the trade. I’m simply raising the points they are addressing.”
Dan Rosen: “Buchnevich is a RFA. With Panarin, Kreider, Kakko, Lafreniere and Kravtsov, he was a luxury NYR couldn’t afford. They downgrade in skill but upgrade in the hard to play against metric. Plus add a second round pick as an asset. All in all, trade makes sense from NYR perspective.”
Lou Korac: “Sammy Blais at his best was solid for #stlblues but was in and out of the lineup, whether injury or scratch. He developed into a solid, physical player. Had some offensively gifted moments but every time it seemed like he gained traction, an injury would derail him.”
Larry Brooks: “Blais is a bottom six, north-south, physical winger to fill a need. Cap hit of $1.5M fits. As previously written, there is going to be no room under cap going forward (or in lineup) for Buchnevich.”
Byron Bader: “That is not a whole lot to pay for a player of Buchnevich’s caliber, who is on a big upswing. Should have cost at least a 1st rounder. ”
Byron Bader: “Buchnevich is a very productive NHLer and has a better than not chance of turning into a star. Blais is an NHLer but a replacement level producer and a 2nd round nets an NHLer about 30% of the time. Not a great trade for the Rangers.”
Tom Timmermann: “Wonder if Rangers are clearing some cap space. In any case, Buchnevich is an excellent pickup for the Blues.”
Satiar Shah: “That’s a great deal for the Blues”
Cam Robinson: “This seems like a real misstep for the Rangers. Blais is fine in his role, but Buchnevich is far more than a 2nd rounder better than him despite cap implications and whatnot”
Jeremy Rutherford: “- Buchnevich came miles under David Quinn the last three years
– Quinn nicknamed him Captain Happy because of his classic facial expressions
– Has a terrific shot, tends to over-pass a bit
– Added PK last year and was good
– Might have been the Rangers’ best player in the first half last season
– Didn’t get much first PP time and still put up good numbers
– After some tough love, he found consistency in his engagement nightly
– Very popular guy among Zibanejad, Kreider, Panarin”
Pavel Buchnevich, acquired by STL, is a top-end first line winger who’s been consistently strong through the last three seasons with great results at both ends of the ice. #STLBlues pic.twitter.com/m2pvi4wSdq
— JFresh (@JFreshHockey) July 23, 2021
Samuel Blais (in return to NYR with a 2nd) has played much less, his impact on shots is a little below average but /his/ shot looks very good even if perhaps he should shoot a little more. pic.twitter.com/RrNQF04J9h
— Micah Blake McCurdy (@IneffectiveMath) July 23, 2021