Some years the trade deadline can be an episode of Let’s Make a Deal, with seemingly endless possibilities behind concealed doors. Other years, it’s much more clear. The 2012 trade deadline was focused on Rick Nash. The 2014 deadline was centered around Martin St. Louis and then-pending UFAs Ryan Callahan and Dan Girardi. This season, the two names leading the discussions were Keith Yandle and Eric Staal.
For a long time earlier in the season, it seemed like the Keith Yandle leaving the Rangers at the trade deadline was inevitable. The situation seemed to shift when McDonagh went down with a concussion on February 6th, and Yandle oddly went from playing 3rd pairing minutes to leading the Rangers in ice-time nearly nightly in McDonagh’s absence.