Could McIlrath be rushed to New York?

Time for McIlrath to put the sweater on? (Photo by Harry How/Getty Images)

Time for McIlrath to put the sweater on? (Photo by Harry How/Getty Images)

With the injuries mounting in New York and the likes of Stu Bickel and Steve Eminger clearly not enjoying the trust of John Tortorella, could we see first round pick and great white hope, Dylan McIlrath rushed to New York? With a nickname like the Undertaker and a (listed) 6-5, 220 lb frame, McIlrath has the potential to be an imposing defenseman.

As seen by the recent inclusion of Christian Thomas, and to a lesser extent Chris Kreider and JT Miller, readiness may not be the priority but rather the necessity of numbers and positional relevance. If you’re going to have to fill the roster you may as well fill it with players with upside. Clearly the Rangers hope Dylan McIlrath will fulfill his talent and draft status in upcoming seasons. He may get a chance sooner rather than later.

McIlrath has suffered through injuries in the last few years, including this year – his first full year as a pro – but he’s now playing regularly for the Whale. Given his size and style/approach to the game, the nasty blueliner (79 penalty minutes in 23 games) could provide a mean streak and physical edge that is clearly, missing from the Rangers at present.

With only one assist in 23 games for the Whale, McIlrath being promoted to the Rangers clearly wouldn’t address the lack of offense currently undermining the Rangers’ season, but the Rangers have two issues right now – the other being that they’re too easy to play against – and McIlrath could in theory help solve that problem.

Who knows how long Dan Girardi, Michael Del Zotto and Ryan McDonagh may be out for? What we do know is that the Rangers have long run out of defenseman the coach trusts, even if just one of the aforementioned trio of blueliners is out long-term. In Dylan McIlrath it may be time to turn to the next rookie for help. This Rangers team is getting younger by the day.

24 Responses to “Could McIlrath be rushed to New York?”

  1. Tommy T says:

    Personally I dont think that Macillrath is ready for the show. His skating has always been lacking since his draft year, add that on top of the injuries he had, makes him a big long shot. The thing that scares me the most about him is that if they do decide to bring him up, torts doesnt play the kid 4-7 minutes a game. Leave him in the whale for the rest of the year and really evaluate him during next years camp and preseason. What about bringing Pyett, he has good numbers and seems like he has earned at least a call up….

    feel free to give me your thoughts and opinions

    • Chris says:

      Technically I agree. I don’t want him playing minimally and don’t think hes ready for a F/T NHL gig either but if they have to call someone up I’d rather he get a cup of coffee and soak up some NHL experience than do what we’ve done before with the likes of Brendan Bell get a game here and a game there with no potential for upside whatsoever.

    • Dave says:

      If these injuries are long term, it wouldn’t shock me to see him get a game or two, but that’s it. I don’t think he’s ready either.

  2. Walt says:

    This would be a good move, if only because there may be fear instilled in the minds of teams that we play. Take a run at our guy, someone will pay the price! This kid was a number 1 pick, let’s see what he can do.

  3. Bloomer says:

    Acquiring Nash was suppose to improve the team offensively, but instead destroyed the teams’ chemistry. Injuries have also had played a role in the teams’ performance, as it takes time for players to adjust to changes in the lineup. This is a team that has lost their identity, it is now just a bunch of guys skating around wearing the same colour jerseys.

    • Justin says:

      I’m sorry Bloomer, but that’s insanity. It’s definitely Nash’s fault that Montreal, Colorado, and Philadelphia decided to grossly overpay for Prust, Mitchell, and Fedetenko, respectively. And, you mean to tell me you’d rather have Dubinsky and Anisimov on the roster instead of Nash, all in the name of chemistry? Bottom-6 turnover happens and the team needs to be able to work through it. That’s not on Rick Nash, even if the entire offensive output for the club seems to fall on him.

      • Chris says:

        I do think the Rangers underestimated the effect all the change to the bottom six would have (I for one, would have kept Mitchell, price allowing – good puck retention) but agree with you Justin; you make the Nash trade 100 out of 100 times, even if he needs to finish better when he returns.

        • Dave says:

          Mitchell is not a $1 million player. Halpern, when he gets going, is an upgrade defensively.

      • Dave says:

        This, this, this, and this again.

    • Juice says:

      Nash is by far an upgrade from Anisimov and Dubinsky. If you look at it Nash AND Krieder took the likes of those spots in Dubinsky and Anisimov. Krieder played minimal minutes on the active roster in the playoffs with Dubinsky as Dubinsky was hurt, which we were 3-4 with him in the lineup. The reason for the chemistry issues is the absence of preseason, short training camps, constant up and down of rookies and AHL guys, constant injuries, and changes of the bottom 6 (due to other teams overpaying). No preseason, injuries to Kreider, Nash, Cally, Del Zotto, McD, Girardi now, Staal had the Flu, Powe, Asham, and lets not forget a trade of Rupp to mix up even the slighest chemistry we may of had down there on the bottome 6. Almost lucky to be over .500. and we were much improved when everyone was healthy. Nash makes everyone around him better. Look at what gabby was doing when they played together, and now Hagelin. Gaborik with Nash out of the lineup has to see all the top lines all the time and is constantly shadowed because of this. Everyone’s production and chemistry will come in time, and imorive that much better when Nash is healthy and in the line-up.

  4. Joe says:

    Please open your eyes people, Nash is not the reason the team has lost it’s identity. It is Torts, his militant, my way, style has run its course, just as it did in Tampa Bay. We have a good team here capable of winning it all. Now we need a coach who will allow the star players to play to their strengths! In Tampa the team quit on him just like the Rangers are doing now. I know the suit thinks I am one of those “people”, but I garuntee that when he does go the players will say the same thing. This team is too talented to be playing the way it is!

    • The Suit says:

      Joe you are one of “those” people. You said the same shit last year about Torts before we went on a tear. Once the team started winning you were no where to be found on this blog. Just like every other Torts hater. When they lose, everything is Torts fault. But when they win, radio silence. It’s a joke.

  5. rickyrants13 says:

    When your team has only four drafted players on its top 12 playing at any given time You are going to have this kind of turn over EVERY year. I have said it before. Notice how that doesnt go for the D 4 of the top six have not changed much and with any luck it will stay that way. And it would have been 5 if Sauer didnt get hurt.

    The Rangers have to keep these kids in the lineup.

    • Dave says:

      Kids belong in the lineup if they belong in the NHL. You can’t rush kids for the sake of playing kids.

  6. Joe says:

    I am really not a Torts hater, in fact I really was very happy when they hired him. I just feel that he has lost the team. Also, just to be fair this is the first year I have ever posted to the site.

    • The Suit says:

      Fair enough, there’s another Joe on here who comes and rips into Torts every time we lose a few games.

      Look, let them get some of their guys back, theyll be fine.

    • Dave says:

      Yea, like Suit said, there’s a Joe that posts here a lot about firing Torts.

      I don’t get the whole argument that he lost the team. Didn’t Quenneville lose his team last year? Now they are undefeated.

  7. Joe says:

    I am really not a Tortorella hater, in fact I really was very happy when they hired him. I just feel that he has lost the team. Also, just to be fair this is the first year I have ever posted to the site.

  8. Joestradamus says:

    I think he will get a look, especially if McD is out indefinitely but I doubt he will pass the 5 games like Miller did though.

  9. Michael says:

    Nash is clearly the best Ranger and is not to blame for chemistry or anything else. The fact that he was acquired for Dubinsky and Anisimov (who both disappeared for games on end) along with Erixon who spent most of his time with the Whale means this team should still be winning without Nash. The team seems soft without Prust. I don’t think McIlrath is ready either but who else do you call? Ghostbusters? Can’t score with your face to the boards all the time and its even more difficult when Brad Richards is playing like a 40 year old rookie

  10. Pete says:

    People are funny, seriously. It takes time for a team to gel, and the Rangers have quite a number of new faces. Not sure why people just expected them to play like last years team, who I feel overachieved but i digress, they need to find their own identity. Again, this takes some time and the injuries haven’t help.

    Nash makes this so much better its hard to quantify, but patience is also necessary. Losing the pre-season and a full camp was kind of big blow taking into consideration again the amount of new faces.

    By the way, has anyone seen Brad Richards? Someone should report that guy missing…

  11. rickyrants13 says:

    I dont think anyone said that trading for Nash ruind anything. I think what they were saying was that all the moves outside of the Nash trade were too much, But hey who knew that the NHL lockout would last as long as it did???

  12. Lou says:

    The fact is the team is playing VERY poorly, but much of it is the style they play (a) no crashing the net; (b) no big body in front of net on power plays; (c) no hitting.
    What worries me the most is the lack of character and heart….you dont need to teach your guys to stand up for their teammates (it should come naturally).
    Frankly I am very disappointed in Cally – leads by example, but needs to open his mouth and hold other accountable !

  13. bernmeister says:

    Though it’s preferable he get more development on the farm, giving him a shot is not that bad if he can skate enough for his position. As a stay at home, skating demands on him are noticeably less up to a point. His main thing would be clear the crease, which I gather he has strength/ability to do.