Rick Nash: New York Huge Winners in Columbus Trade

Lewis Hughes@lah_8Contributor IIIJuly 23, 2012

GLENDALE, AZ - APRIL 03:  Rick Nash #61 of the Columbus Blue Jackets skates up to a face off against the Phoenix Coyotes during NHL game at Jobing.com Arena on April 3, 2012 in Glendale, Arizona.  The Coyotes defeated the Blue Jackets 2-0.  (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)
Christian Petersen/Getty Images

The Rick Nash saga is finally over.

As reported by TSN's Bob McKenzie, the Columbus Blue Jackets have sent Rick Nash, along with minor-leaguer Steve Delisle and a conditional third round pick, to the New York Rangers in exchange of Brandon Dubinsky, Artem Anisimov, Tim Erixon and a future first-round pick.

Simply put, New York won this trade.

After months and months of holding out for a bevy of team's top prospects and young players, Blue Jackets GM Scott Howson finally pulled the trigger on a deal to send the franchise's first-ever draft pick to Broadway.

Now don't get me wrong, the return for Nash isn't particularly bad and it could've been a lot worse had Howson waited even longer to make a deal. But no matter how you look at it, the Rangers completely won this trade.

Nash is one of the premier power forwards in the game today with two 40-goal seasons, five 30-goal seasons and five NHL All-Star appearances to his name at only 28.

This was all accomplished without ever really having a No. 1 center to play alongside in Columbus.

Nash is supremely talented and will prosper playing alongside a legitimate No. 1 center in New York,  Brad Richards, while also making key contributions on the power play, mentoring young Chris Kredier. He'll also make up for the loss of Marian Gaborik's offense while he recovers from surgery.

Nash is exactly what the Rangers need to fix an underwhelming offense from last year and as a way to maximize the team's run for next year's playoffs.

For all this, Rangers GM Glen Sather only had to give up the underperforming Brandon Dubinsky, who disappointed last year as he failed to make the next step in his NHL development, Artem Anisimov, a solid player but whose ceiling was a second line 40-50 point player, and prospect Tim Erixon.

Erixon only played 18 games for New York last year before being sent down to Connecticut. His loss will not have much of an impact on a stocked Rangers' D. 

The first round pick is likely to be a very late one (No. 28 onwards) as well.

Perhaps more importantly, New York also didn't give up any of their "top" prospects Howson previously demanded (Kreider, McDonagh) or any valuable current roster pieces (Stepan, Del Zotto.)

Sather only gave up forward depth on the big club, which will be filled by Nash along with a slew of prospects ready to join the NHL.

Overall, Sather paid a cheap price. He gave away replaceable assets to receive an elite power forward who will definitely help the team be even better next year in a number of ways.

If that doesn't make this trade a win for New York, I don't know what does.