Rangers prospect Q&A with Hartford’s Bob Crawford

August 6, 2014, by

Over the course of the summer, we have received a lot of questions about the prospects in Hartford. Unfortunately, we don’t have the ability to watch/cover the Wolf Pack the way others can. So, I reached out to Bob Crawford (@HawkCrawford), and he was kind enough to answer a few questions that had been raised.



Q: Which prospects made the most progress in Hartford last season?

A: Dylan McIlrath certainly made huge progress—really rounded out his game. Ryan Bourque also took a quantum leap, in my opinion, went from being almost purely an energy guy to being a pretty good offensive player. Conor Allen also made a nice adjustment to the pros, as an undrafted college free agent.

Q: Are there any kids you think are ready for the next level?

A: I think J.T. Miller is just about ready to make the jump. To me, his best game is more than good enough for the NHL, he just has to make sure he brings that game every night. Jesper Fast also strikes me as a well-rounded player who could be a very useful piece for the Rangers.

Q: Which kids really need to show improvement this year so that they don’t lose too much ground on the new kids arriving?

A:  I think there’s pressure on all the prospects to ramp up their development curve. It’s a pretty short window these days to grab a shot at the NHL, and nobody can afford to stall out, even for a short time. I think the guys I already mentioned, plus the likes of Danny Kristo, Oscar Lindberg, Marek Hrivik and Tommy Hughes, have to look at themselves as being real close to latching on to NHL jobs, and make every second of training camp, and of any time they spend in the AHL, really count.

Thank you very much Bob for the time to answer these questions. Also, thank you to the Hartford Wolf Pack for being so kind as to direct us to Bob for answers.

Categories : Prospects


  1. WilliamW says:

    Nothing terribly earth shattering there

    Good to hear McIlrath is improving his game, would be nice to see him be able to hold his own for a few games in NY later on this year

  2. Frank Cerbone says:

    Would be nice to play McIlrath here in NY, but I believe his future, much like Dalew Weises, is outside of NY

    Hrivik, Kristo, & Tommy Hughes have no future here and either are AHL types or, maybe in Kristo’s case trade bade.

    Allen’s future is tied to Staal’s future with NY. If Staal stays, Allen goes back to Hartford or is trade bait.

    With 12 or 13 RFAs/UFAs next season, Sather needs to move players/repackage players to get players who are under Ranger’s control for a while.

    There will be some lean times for a couple of years in Ranger’s future prospects. Rangers have blown just too many drafts.

    • SalMerc says:

      I believe that having 5 or 6 near-NHL caliber forwards and 2 near-NHL caliber defensemen is pretty good. While the RFAs and UFAs may present a problem, there is a long way to go before they become that problem. A lot can happen, so I am not ready to believe we are looking at lean years just yet. Lets hope that some of these guys make guys like Stall, Hags and others expendable by their terrific play. Slats is pretty good at his job.

  3. Frank Cerbone says:

    Hagelin was 2nd on Rangers with 17th goals & 2nd on Rangers with 5 game winning goals-both to Nash
    despite missing 10 games with a shoulder injury at start of the season. At $2.1 mil, Hagelin is a bargain and a splendid defensive players as well who totally took Subban out of his game in the Montreal series.

    • Spozo says:

      Hagelins 17 goals were fifth on the team this year. Not 2nd

      • Chris A says:

        True, but I still think Hagelin is a very underrated player. I get that everyone looks at his potential cap hit in the future and the fact that he only pots 15 a year, but that speed. How can you let that leave your organization?

        The best part about Hagelin is his all around game, he’s great in all parts of the rink. I wouldn’t want to sign him into his 30s but I definitely want to see him as part of this team for the next four or five seasons.

        Crap, there are going to be some painful roster decisions coming down within the next nine months.