Chris Drury had done much of his heavy lifting before the free agency period opened Wednesday, having traded for, and then signed forward Barclay Goodrow last week. So when free agency did kick off, and teams started signing players, Drury and the Rangers were relatively quiet.
The biggest move the Blueshirts made Wednesday was signing veteran defenseman Patrik Nemeth to a three-year contract that reportedly will pay him an average of $2.5 million per year. They also added another defenseman, Jarred Tinordi, and a couple of depth forwards in Greg McKegg and Dryden Hunt.
In the meantime, former Rangers defenseman Tony DeAngelo, who hasn’t played since the Rangers put him on waivers in January, and who had the final year of his contract bought out last week, signed a one-year deal with the Carolina Hurricanes. DeAngelo’s deal is worth a reported $1 million. He will be expected to quarterback the Carolina power play in the wake of the departure of free agent Dougie Hamilton, who reportedly agreed to a seven-year deal with the New Jersey Devils.
Nemeth, 29, split last season with the Detroit Red Wings and Colorado Avalanche and had three goals and seven assists in 52 games, with 20 penalty minutes. Acquired by Colorado at the trade deadline, the 6-3, 228-pound Swede appeared in 10 playoff games for the Avalanche, earning one assist, with six penalty minutes.
Nemeth, a lefthanded shot, will presumably plug into the third defense pair, where he will likely partner with rookie Nils Lundkvist, a 2018 first-round pick who was the Borje Salming Award winner last season as the best Swedish-born defenseman in the Swedish Hockey League. Nemeth and Lundkvist have the same agent, Claude Lemieux.
The Rangers also announced a two-year deal with Tinordi (6-6, 209) that reports say is worth $1.8 million. Tinordi, 29, is the son of former Rangers defenseman Mark Tinordi, and he appears to be destined for the role of the seventh defenseman. He split the season between the Nashville Predators and Boston Bruins and played a total of 21 games, earning one assist and 11 penalty minutes. He appeared in four playoff games for Boston, and did not record a point.
The Rangers also brought back gritty forward McKegg on a one-year contract. Hunt received a two-year deal.
McKegg, 29, spent most of last season on the taxi squad for Boston. He played five games for the Bruins (one goal) and two games for Boston’s Providence farm team (two assists). He spent 2019-20 with the Rangers, scoring five goals and nine points in 53 games in a mostly fourth-line role.
Hunt, 25, played in 26 games last season with the Arizona Coyotes, scoring three goals with five assists. In 89 career games with Arizona and Florida, he has six goals and 17 assists.