In short: A steal for the Rangers, if McCabe can fill the veteran defenseman/power-play point man role that will be asked of him.
Kennedy, 24, signed on in the summer after being bought out by the Sabres. After a solid camp, the Rangers sent Kennedy to Connecticut rather than send Todd White down; Kennedy, making just $500,000, was sure to be claimed on waivers if he were recalled, so he spent the entire season in the AHL, with 12 goals and 30 assists in 55 games. He should be a Panther for the remainder of the season.
The Rangers still have their first-round pick and two second-rounders (they have the Caps' second-rounder via the Hurricanes in the Bobby Sanguinetti deal last year), so there are some chips to make another move.
And they did not give up a current roster player, so the Rangers now have eight NHL defensemen. That means Michael Del Zotto is likely headed back to Connecticut, since he hasn't reestablished himself as a regular since his last demotion.