Rangers blueliner John Moore has never really lived up to the hype of being the 21st overall pick — and ninth overall defenseman — taken at the 2009 NHL Entry Draft. Traded once already as part of the Marian Gaborik-to-Columbus deal, Moore could now be on the move again before the Mar. 2 trade deadline, per the New York Post:
This return to the lineup [Moore dressed for Thursday’s loss to Montreal] may well have marked the beginning of a showcase for Moore, who is in line for a summer Group II salary arbitration award that assuredly will be way beyond the Blueshirts’ liking and is thus all but certain to dealt, either early in the offseason or before the upcoming March 2 trade deadline.
If he is dealt sooner rather than later, the Rangers could use him as a chip for a veteran rental property to team with Kevin Klein (or, alternately, Dan Boyle) on the third pair to bulk up a blue line in need of it.
Moore was a lineup fixture last season but, this year, appears to have lost some of the trust of bench boss Alain Vigneault. Moore’s been a healthy scratch on numerous occasions this season and dueling with Matt Hunwick for the No. 6 d-man position, but there could be potential intrigue for other teams: Moore only turned 24 three months ago and has over 200 games of NHL experience, with an additional 21 of postseason experience during New York’s run to last year’s Stanley Cup Final.