‘The Undertaker’ had endured a slow start to his season after he was perhaps surprisingly returned to Moose Jaw early by the Rangers. The last week however has seen the Rangers number 1 pick in the 2010 draft start to turn his season around. After going scoreless in his first 8 games Mcilrath has contributed offensively recently which had coincided with Moose Jaw winning back to back games for the first time this season. During those two games Mcilrath contributed 3 assists and had improved his rating to -6.
On Tuesday night Moose Jaw beat the Saskatoon Blades 5-1 with Mcilrath grabbing two helpers and going +2. Prior to the win over the Blades, the Warriors had beaten the Kootenay Ice 6-3, a game which saw Mcilrath get 1 assist, 5 PIMS while going +1. The back to back wins had helped Moose Jaw’s record improve to 4-7. The win over the Blades on Tuesday was a sign that the Warriors may be turning things around because the Blades are leading the division with an 8-2 record so the win was a particularly impressive one. According to the Moose Jaw Times Herald newspaper the Warriors have been suffering through many injuries recently so that may have played a big part in their poor start to their season.
The Warriors also had a second midweek game, playing at home to Medicine Hat on Wednesday. Despite losing 3-2 the Warriors were able to grab a point as they tied it up with 10.3 seconds left in regulation and grabbed the losers point in the shoot-out. Mcilrath wasn’t able to contribute offensively on this occasion. The big D-man went -1, scoreless, whilst taking a minor penalty. Another 2010 first round pick, Emerson Etem scored against Mcilrath’s Warriors.
While Mcilrath wasn’t drafted for his offensive skills if he can contribute offensively and develop his offensive game before he makes it to NY, then the Rangers could have a serious weapon on their hands. At 6’5 and 215lbs and willing to use every last inch of that frame, Mcilrath has the ability to be dominating. Rangers fans will need to patient however as Mcilrath, realistically, is at least 2-3 years away but the wait could very much be worth it.