Rangers cut bait on McIlrath, trade him to Panthers

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The New York Rangers have traded defenseman Dylan McIlrath to the Florida Panthers for defenseman Steven Kampfer and a conditional seventh-round pick in 2018.

TSN’s Bob McKenzie was the first to report the trade. The condition on the deal is that McIlrath plays 30 NHL games this season. If that condition isn’t met, no draft pick will be exchanged, per McKenzie.

It’s an interesting swap in that both McIlrath and Kampfer have already been on waivers this season. McIlrath, 24, cleared two weeks ago and was assigned to AHL Hartford. Kampfer, 28, cleared yesterday and can now be sent to the AHL as well.

The fact the Rangers were able to get a pick out of the Panthers, albeit just a conditional seventh-rounder, suggests that McIlrath is the more valuable of the two d-men. Florida’s management, which has made no secret of its belief in analytics, may have been intrigued by McIlrath’s solid possession numbers last season, not to mention his size and toughness.

For the Rangers, the trade closes the book on McIlrath, whom they selected 10th overall in 2010.