Archive for Preseason
The baby Rangers, the kids competing for roster spots, shined last night, but the team blew a two goal lead in the third period en route to a shootout loss to the Bruins. It’s the preseason, so there’s no need to complain, panic, or worry. The kids played well, and although they lost, you can see that the Rangers will have new blood in the lineup in October, with more knocking on the door as injury call ups.
- Brady Skjei is making it very difficult to cut him. He was solid again last night. He looked at home on the powerplay, drawing a defender out of position at the point and opening up the ice for Kevin Hayes for his goal. He will likely spend time in the AHL, just like Ryan McDonagh did to start his career. But the kid is the real deal.
- Brett Bellemore –fighting skill aside, he got crushed in that fight– is also making it hard to cut him. He’s been quietly solid.
- Oscar Lindberg had another strong game, this time at RW. He played LW and C in the other two games. Kid offers versatility all over the ice. He’s making this team. He and Jarret Stoll really clicked. Stoll is another one with a strong game.
- Ryan Bourque wasn’t flashy, but he was overall solid. He finished checks, was in on the forecheck, and was rarely out of position. If it wasn’t for Brian Gibbons, he’d be a dark horse to make the club. He also ensured the game got to a shootout.
The Rangers have made their second round of cuts, trimming the roster by four players. Richard Nejezchleb and Travis Oleksuk will be sent to the Hartford Wolf Pack. Kirill Kabanov and Jayden Hart have been released from their tryouts. This leaves the Rangers with 21 forwards, 14 defensemen, and 4 goalies.
More cuts are expected after tonight’s game, as Alain Vigneault has indicated he wants to get to 18 forwards and 10 or 11 defensemen. A goalie may be cut as well.
The Rangers are in Boston tonight to take on the Bruins in their third preseason game of the season. The Rangers have also announced that cuts will come after this game, and the roster will be trimmed to 18 forwards and 10 or 11 defensemen. Just because a player is in the lineup tonight doesn’t mean he is safe from the cuts. There are at least three players that will likely get the ax tonight.
But before that happens, there is a game to play. The Bruins had a weird offseason. I really don’t know how else to summarize it. Don Sweeney is either a genius or a fool, and there’s really no middle ground here.
What have they done lately?
The Rangers have announced their lineup for tomorrow’s preseason game against the Bruins.
The Rangers have made their first round of cuts today, cutting 19 players. Of those 19 players cut, 12 will go to the AHL, six will go to their respective Junior teams, and one will be cut from his tryout.
To the AHL (12): Calle Andersson, Kodie Curran, Cedrick Desjardins, Troy Donnay, Chris McCarthy, Chad Nehring, Josh Nicholls, Sam Noreau, Mackenzie Skapski, Michael St. Croix, Nick Tarnasky, Petr Zamorsky
Released From Tryout (1): Jacob Smith
It’s interesting to me that Ryan Graves made the first round of cuts. It shows how high the organization is on him. Especially since he made the cut over Andersson/Zamorsky.
Don’t over-analyze the Skapski cut too much. He was never starting in the NHL this year. Antti Raanta and Magnus Hellberg are competing for the backup spot. That was always the plan. The Rangers have 43 players remaining in camp.
After an impressive performance last night against the Devils, the Rangers are in Philly to take on a Flyers team that, like the Devils, isn’t expected to make much noise this year. They are certainly more talented, but they are weak on the blue line and have minimal forward depth.
Today’s contest will feature a 3-on-3 overtime period, regardless of the score of the game.
What have they done lately?
The Flyers are not expected to be a playoff team this year. However, they have Claude Giroux and Jakub Voracek, so they are capable of beating any team on any given night. They aren’t as bad as the Devils.
The Rangers announced their lineup for tonight’s game:
Per Steve Zipay, the top two lines are Etem-Hayes-Miller and Lindberg-Stoll-Stalberg. Guys playing back to backs are McIlrath, Diaz, Adam, Megna, Stalberg, Lindberg, and Bourque. It is not a coincidence that most of these guys are either on the bubble or kids playing for a roster spot.
Hockey is officially back. The Rangers opened their preseason last night with a 6-3 victory over the Devils. The fourth line of Jayson Megna, Brian Gibbons, and Luke Adam put on a show, scoring three times. Gibbons had a goal and two assists, and Megna had a pair of goals, one on the powerplay. Since this is the preseason, I’m not going into a goal breakdown, but you can check out all the GIFs from the game at www.nyrgifs.com. You can also check video highlights on the Videos page.
- That fourth line looked like they wanted to stay a little longer. They were already written off before the game started, and this was a bit of a statement by them. If anything, Megna and Gibbons earned a longer look in camp.
- Brady Skjei certainly didn’t look out of place. He made a lot of nice plays with the puck, and one very nice defensive play that started the Oscar Lindberg goal.
- Dylan McIlrath wasn’t flashy, and I really didn’t notice him that much. He took a penalty with a hit to the head, but he wasn’t really targeting the head. His elbow was in, but he’s 6’5″, and if you hit anyone at that height, it’s going to be in the head. I looked up his stats, and he managed to drive possession (58%) with just 33% OZ starts. Don’t put much stock into single game possession samples in the preseason though, was just something I looked up.
Hockey is finally back. The Rangers are at home to take on the Devils tonight in their preseason opener. While the game may be meaningless, there are battles to be fought and roster spots to be won. Five players in the lineup tonight are fighting for a roster spot, and most eyes tonight will be on them.
What have they done lately?
The Devils are not expected to be good this year, and are likely going to be cellar dwellers this year. But they do have talent, a solid netminder, and a new coach.