Perhaps a change of scenery is all Marian Gaborik needs to get it together again.
The New York Rangers, who rank dead last in hockey in goals per game (2.26), have shipped one of the premiere goal scorers in the game to the playoff aspiring (no, seriously), Columbus Blue Jackets. Gaborik will be heading to Columbus, in the most fantasy relevant trade of Wednesday’s deadline.
It’s no secret that Gaborik hasn’t necessarily been Gaborik here in 2013. In 35 games played, the perennial 40-goal scorer only has nine goals and 10 assists on the season, and has even been demoted to the fourth line at times by head coach John Tortorella. While many believe Gaborik has played his way out of the Big Apple, it certainly doesn’t matter now. He will be a member of the Blue Jackets and will instantly become the team’s best goal scorer. Columbus can certainly use the additional offensive firepower, as they aren’t much better than the Rangers, ranking 29th in hockey in goals per game (2.31).
Perhaps this move lights a fire underneath of Gaborik, making him realize that if he doesn’t play well, he can be moved at anytime, despite his past credentials. Reunited with Artem Anisimov, Gaborik can still light the lamp almost as well as anyone in hockey and it’ll be interesting to see how he gels with his new teammates on what many believe should be the team’s first line. One thing is for sure, the move can’t do any worse for Gaborik, who is sporting 0.54 points per contest, his worst since his rookie campaign. Still, don’t sleep on Gaborik in Columbus. There are some talented young pieces around him and when he has the puck on his stick in the slot, he can absolutely blast a shot passed opposing netminders.
Adam Pfeifer is a featured fantasy sports columnist for Rant Sports.
You can follow him on Twitter @aPfeiferRS.