As expected, the Rangers have placed Magnus Hellberg on waivers. Hellberg was always destined for Hartford with Henrik Lundqvist and Antti Raanta in the fold for this year. Waivers is a formality. It’s unlikely he is claimed.
The Rangers have released the lines for tonight’s preseason finale against the Flyers:
The Canadiens surprised a lot of people yesterday morning, placing defenseman Mark Barberio on waivers. The 26-year-old left handed defenseman put up a line of 2-8-10 in 30 games last season with the Habs, which falls just a bit short of a 30 point season over 82 games. But in the AHL he regular puts up 60 points per season. He appears to be the classic tweener, someone who excels in the AHL, but not in the NHL.
The scouting report on Barberio is what every team hopes to have on the blue line. He is a good skater, has great vision, makes a good first pass, and qualifies as the “new NHL puck mover” that teams are gravitating towards. On paper, he looks like a guy that should be given a shot, especially on a team that is woefully thin –even if the Rangers front office refuses to admit– on defense after Ryan McDonagh.
In addition to the recent cuts of Marek Hrivik, Nicklas Jensen, Mat Bodie, Chris Summers, and Maxim Lapierre, the Rangers have announced four more cuts. John Gilmour, Mackenzie Skapski, Ryan Graves, and Malte Stromwall have all been sent to Hartford. None of these four will require waivers.
The Rangers have 29 players remaining in camp, with one more preseason game to go. Of those 29, two are Boo Nieves and Gabriel Fontaine, who are injured. They won’t make the team, so it’s just 27 players remaining.
The Rangers are going to score a million goals this year
Yes, I know someone needs to get the forwards the puck and there’s still not a clear solution to that conundrum. But the sheer amount of talent up front is pretty impressive. Both Pavel Buchnevich and Jimmy Vesey look prepared to contribute right out of the gate, and Brandon Pirri has showcased a rare ability to put the puck during the net in the preseason. On top of that, Mika Zibanejad appears capable of picking up right where Derick Brassard left off and then some. The Rangers have more than enough forwards to fill three scoring lines, and even the anticipated checking line should have a much better chance of chipping in offensively than in years past.
New York might have found a power play quarterback
The Rangers have waived Marek Hrivik and Nicklas Jensen as part of the next round of cuts. Jensen’s cut was somewhat expected, however cutting Hrivik, who has had a strong preseason, is a bit of a surprise. I was hoping Hrivik would get a longer look, but with Josh Jooris and Nathan Gerbe, I guess that was a pipe dream. Both, if they clear, will go to Hartford.
Naturally, this means Tanner Glass is still on the roster for the time being.
Boy was this a boring game. The Isles and Rangers played like they knew it was preseason, except the Rangers played like that with half the lineup fighting for a spot on the roster. I find that to be frustrating, but it’s the fourth game in six nights, so it is what it is. Not many Rangers impressed last night with cuts looming.
- Way too many people make something out of who has the ‘A’ in a preseason game. This is the second time Glass has had the ‘A’ and people freaked out. Relax. It’s the preseason.
- The Rangers didn’t really get much going. They were bland offensively, didn’t gain the zone often, and were just unable to get shots off. Considering there were two lines that could be dressing next week, that’s not that good.
- There were a lot of defensive miscues and odd man rushes given up. Says a lot about the defensemen that were playing, as three of them are on the bubble. All of Brady Skjei, Adam Clendening, and Dylan McIlrath had rough games. John Gilmour too, but we always knew he was headed to Hartford anyway.
The roster is beginning to take shape for the Rangers, as they are left with 36 players in camp. Tonight likely represents the last chance for some bubble players to make a positive impression on the coaching staff. It’s also likely the last game for players destined to go to the AHL who earned longer looks, like Robin Kovacs.
The Isles are dressing most of their NHL forwards tonight, so expect a decent amount of pressure on the Rangers defense. This could be the game where we see how well Adam Clendening can perform against NHL regulars, and if he truly belongs in the top-six. Only time will tell.
The Rangers have cut defensemen Mat Bodie and Chris Summers, trimming the roster to 37 players. Bodie and Summers will need to clear waivers. Chris Brown and Tommy Hughes, cut yesterday, will also need to clear waivers.
Maxim Lapierre has been released from his PTO.
The Rangers have released their lineup for tonight against the Islanders:
It’s interesting to see Jensen with both Miller and Hayes. It appears that Alain Vigneault wants to give him a shot in what could be a third line role, to see how he performs. My guess is that tonight is make-or-break for him though.