Rangers assistant GM Chris Drury said that the organization's priorities moving forward are to add "young, competitive players with speed and skill and 'a premium on high character.'"
When Jeff Gorton and Glen Sather wrote a letter to the fans announcing that the team was intending to sell at the deadline, they said that their focus was going to be "adding young, competitive players that combine speed, skill and character."
When Gorton and Sather met with the media following the release of the letter, Gorton said "we want fast players, character players, guys we can build our team around. That is what we will be looking for."
Following the deadline, Gorton said, "we've had a big week here where we made a lot of trades with a rebuild in mind, getting younger, character, skaters, some draft picks. Create an opportunity to bring youth to the organization to build this thing as we go forward."
While talking about some of the prospects the Rangers acquired, Gorton said that the Rangers like his "character" and that the way he plays fits with how the game is played today.
Gorton called Brett Howden someone they have "coveted" for a while and someone whose upside and "character" they like a lot.
He said that Howden can play against the top players on the other team and noted that he is a "real good person. We are really happy with him and his ability and his future."
On Hajek, Gorton called him a hard-nosed guy" and someone the Rangers have liked for a long time. He said that Hajek is a "character guy" and in top shape, conditioning and with good size.
Gorton said that the players the Rangers acquired are all low maintenance people and that if they don't reach their potential it won't be because they didn't work hard.
Adam Rotter: The Rangers put a very strong value on character as they look to build a culture of hard working, and hopefully highly skilled, players to carry them into their next era of success. Howdek, Hajek and Lindgren all seem to fit that mold with Howden being a skilled two-way center, Hajek with the potential to be a top-four defender and Lindgren is known for his leadership and competitiveness. The Rangers need to be harder to play against and these are the type of players that help make that happen.