Despite a great season last time around, when Brandon Prust became an integral (albeit surprising) Ranger there could be some difficulty finding an ideal spot for Prust on this year’s team. Prust is obviously going to make the side; after all he became a dangerous penalty killer last season as well as a fearless competitor. However, his role this year is somewhat complicated by the fact he still hasn’t been cleared for physical contact and won’t be until the Rangers hit Europe – meaning the gritty winger won’t have had an ideal pre-season whatsoever.
His line mates from last season – primarily Brian Boyle and Ruslan Fedotenko – will have a full camp under their belts with different line mates as well as accumulating plenty of ice time. The Rangers have a lot of wingers desperate to make the team out of camp including physical winger Dale Weise, speedy Carl Hagelin and Mats Zuccarello. One of those, if not more, may head to Europe because of injuries persisting on the roster to players such as Prust.
So what if a Hagelin or Weise finds great chemistry in the bottom six, especially with Prust’s former line? Again, to repeat, Prust isn’t going anywhere. His play last year built up a lot of credit and he’s a great find for the Rangers but he may be moved around the roster if chemistry is built up in his absence. Not an ideal scenario for the fan favourite.