Fantasy Impact: The New York Rangers traded defenseman Ryan McDonagh to the Tampa Bay Lightning for forward Vladislav Namestnikov, prospect forward Brett Howden, prospect defenseman Libor Hajek, a 2018 first-round draft pick and a conditional second-round draft pick.
The Rangers get: a second-line forward who showed he could thrive on a top line playing with superstars, but Namestnikov may just be a 50-point player without that help. In fact, Miller probably has more offensive talent and upside. But they also get a top prospect in Howden, who I have ranked 112th on my Top Fantasy Prospect Forwards list – and he moves up with this deal. You can read our scouting report on Howden here. Howden, drafted 27th overall two summers ago, had seven points in seven games for Team Canada at the WJC last month and he has 58 points in 38 games as captain of the Moose Jaw Warriors of the WHL.
Hajek was drafted 37th overall that same year and is ranked 72nd on my Top Fantasy Prospect Defensemen list. He, too, moves up on that list by quite a bit. He had eight points in seven games for Team Czech Republic at the WJC – this is a defenseman! You can read our scouting report on Hajek here. Both prospects are about two years away from the NHL with this franchise, which is why both will be moving up my lists.
The Lightning get: the second best defenseman on the trading block, plus a young forward with potential and talent to fill any position in the top nine – forward or wing. Miller’s versatility could prove valuable come playoff time. McDonagh adds the steadying presence and postseason experience that could put this team over the top.
Fantasy Players Impacted: Nothing killed fantasy value on Deadline Day – or with any move in the last six months – then what happened to Vladislav Namestnikov. He’s sunk. He can keep up with superstars, but the Rangers don’t have any. On this team he becomes a 50-point player. He just fills Miller’s former role.
Miller could see equal production on the second or third line, but if he sneaks onto the first line the way Namestnikov did in the first half, then Miller’s production will soar. It could go either way.
McDonagh is going to steal some of Mikhail Sergachev’s power-pl