One For Good Measure
Kevin Labanc to the New York Rangers for Pavel Buchnevich
This could be an interesting trade for both teams. Both guys are in the dog house with their respective clubs, as Buchnevich has been getting scratched in several games this season, but not for lack of talent. And Labanc has been relegated to fourth line duty by Peter DeBoer. And a change of scenery could really be a boon for both players. Both are 23, and Labanc would be playing at home in New York as the Staten Island kid surely would feel more comfortable in front of his hometown fans.
Buchnevich has immense potential that is getting wasted for whatever reason with the Rangers. He may not have the numbers on paper that Labanc does, as he only has 15 points on the season. But Buchnevich is fifth on the Rangers with 9 goals and his underlying stats tell a better story. From Corsica Hockey, he has a +2.5% RelCF, along with a 5.14 RelGF%. Buchnevich is sixth on the Rangers at 50% GF% and actually places 2nd on the Blue Shirts with a 63%HDGF with players with over 30 games behind only Kevin Hayes.
He clearly hasn’t meshed with the Rangers since being drafted 75th overall. And neither former coach Alain Vinigault nor new Head Coach David Quinn’s tough love approach has worked. Pavel Buchnevich could be just one of those players who can really benefit from a change of scenery.
Most of the players on this list aren’t necessarily going to have the impact of an Artemi Panerin or a Chris Krieder or Matt Duchene, but the facts are this: The San Jose Sharks don’t necessarily NEED those guys to make a deep playoff run, and two, they don’t have the means to acquire them.
Often times it is the smaller acquisitions that pay off in the biggest way, just look at Eric Fehr last season, or James Riemer in 2016. It could be one of these guys, or one of the many names not mentioned that finally puts the San Jose Sharks over the top.