Tyler Motte is going to the Big Apple.
The Vancouver Canucks have traded Motte to the New York Rangers in exchange for a fourth-round draft pick in 2023, according to NHL insider Frank Seravalli of Daily Faceoff.
The deal was reported by Seravalli just five minutes before the noon trade deadline.
Hearing #Canucks have traded Tyler Motte to #NYR for a 2023 4th round pick.@DailyFaceoff
— Frank Seravalli (@frank_seravalli) March 21, 2022
The return of Motte will be disappointing to many Canucks fans, given how valuable he has been to the team this season. But as a pending unrestricted free agent, it made sense for new Canucks GM Patrik Allvin to cash Motte in for something, rather than lose him for nothing in the offseason.
The Michigan native is likely due a substantial raise this summer from his $1.225 million contract.
Motte ranks ninth in scoring (15 points in 49 games) among Canucks forwards and is seventh in average ice time (14:17).
In recent weeks, Motte has been a key contributor to a surprisingly good checking line, alongside Juho Lammikko and Matthew Highmore. The 27-year-old winger has also been one of Vancouver’s most relied-upon penalty killers, ranking behind only J.T. Miller in average time on ice while shorthanded.
Motte spent over four years in Vancouver, coming over as a trade deadline acquisition from Columbus in a much-criticized deal for Thomas Vanek in 2018. The trade turned out to be a good one for the Canucks, as Motte blossomed into a useful fourth-line winger, with the ability to kill penalties and chip in offence.
Motte already has a career-high in assists (8) this season and is one point back of his career high in points.
In addition to his on-ice play, Motte became a fan favourite for his work promoting mental health.
The deal is the last move of the day for the Canucks, according to The Athletic’s Thomas Drance.
I'm told #Canucks are done for the day, following the Tyler Motte trade to NYR.
— Thomas Drance (@ThomasDrance) March 21, 2022
It was a fairly quiet deadline day for the Canucks, given that many of their players have been in the rumour mill for weeks, if not months. In addition to the Motte move, Vancouver picked up Brad Richardson off waivers from the Flames today. They also traded Travis Hamonic to the Ottawa Senators yesterday.