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What The Tim Erixon Trade Means For The Rangers Draft Strategy

Before 2 p.m. Wednesday afternoon the New York Rangers had three draft picks in the first two rounds. The Rangers held the 15th (1st), the 43rd (2nd) and 57 (2nd) round picks in this year's draft. 

There was a significant amount of speculation the Rangers might try and use their two second-round picks to get back into the first round, or maybe package one of the picks with their first to move into the top 10. Obviously now, neither of those things are going to happen. 

But in the end, Glen Sather still upgraded those two second-round picks with the acquisition of Tim Erixon

If Erixon, who was originally drafted 23rd overall by the Calgary Flames in the 2009 NHL Entry draft, didn't sign with the Flames by 5 p.m. Wednesday, he would have been eligible to re-enter this year's draft. If he re-entered the draft he would have been a lock to be a top-10 pick (and even higher in some circles). 

So Sather, instead of taking a top-10 prospect the Rangers would have had to wait on to develop, got a prospect who is essentially NHL ready right now and can make an immediate impact. 

The other aspect of this deal now focuses on the Rangers' 15th overall pick. There was originally some debate as to how the Rangers would use the pick. Would they go after a forward? Would they use it on yet another defenseman? This trade almost guarantees they will use the pick on a forward.

The Rangers already have one of the youngest and most promising defensive corps in the NHL (if not THE most promising). At least one of the Rangers plethora of young defensemen will probably already be moved due to a lack of space, so why grab another; especially when so many talented forwards will be available when the Rangers are at the podium. 

This also means we might figure out about the future of some of the Rangers young defensemen sooner rather than later. In the end, the trade was a terrific one, and the Rangers should be very pleased. 

Also, I left out the Roman Horak aspect. The Rangers used a fifth-round pick to get Horak originally, and they got one back from the Flames. Horak never projected to make the team out of camp, so he won't be missed.