Rangers coach Peter Laviolette watches his team during the third...

Rangers coach Peter Laviolette watches his team during the third period of an NHL hockey game against the Columbus Blue Jackets in Columbus, Ohio, Sunday, Feb. 25, 2024. Credit: AP/Paul Vernon

In his team’s last game before Friday’s trade deadline, Rangers coach Peter Laviolette made one tweak in his forward lines that might have suggested he’s getting things in place for what the Blueshirts’ roster might look like after the deadline.

Laviolette flip-flopped the centers of the third and fourth lines against the Florida Panthers on Monday, moving Barclay Goodrow to the third line between rookie Will Cuylle and Jimmy Vesey and Jonny Brodzinski to the fourth line between Adam Edstrom and Matt Rempe.

Brodzinski to the fourth line gives him a role if the Rangers trade for a third-line center.

The Seattle Kraken scratched center Alex Wennberg, a potential trade target for the Rangers and several other teams, for Monday’s game against Calgary.

Pairing Goodrow with Vesey could be two-thirds of a potential checking line that could match up against other teams’ first or second lines. On Monday, the Cuylle-Goodrow-Vesey line started the game against Florida’s top line of Carter Verhaege, Aleksander Barkov and Sam Reinhart.

If the Rangers were to acquire a top-line right wing, he would replace Kaapo Kakko on the line with Mika Zibanejad and Chris Kreider; Kakko would drop to the third line with Cuylle. That would leave Vesey and Goodrow and either Brodzinski, Edstrom or Rempe as a fourth or checking line.

Did coach give the OK?

Laviolette was asked about Rempe, who has been a sensation because of how many fights he’s had in his short time on the team. Rempe fought Toronto enforcer Ryan Reaves in Saturday’s 4-3 shootout loss, and before he did, he appeared to look at the Rangers’ bench for approval.

“There’s always conversations going on with the players,’’ Laviolette said. “And then there’s things that happen on the ice, and, you know, that situation happened . . . I thought he did a heck of a job against one of the tougher players in the league.’’

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