For DeAngelo, this is a make or break season

Even before Tony DeAngelo ever put on a Rangers uniform, he was going to have an uphill battle in New York. One of the major cogs in the Derek Stepan trade, there were many questions about why the Rangers would trade for DeAngelo, a promising prospect already on his third team with on and off the ice issues. The skill and talent was there, though. No one could deny that.

Adding to DeAngelo’s issues on and off the ice –which includes slurs against teammates and opponents and physically accosting refs– was his social media presence. His controversial statements on Twitter made the rounds quickly, and DeAngelo’s hole got deeper. It also didn’t help that he vocalized his love for the Philadelphia Eagles.

After making the club out of camp last year, DeAngelo was scarcely used by Alain Vigneault, and was unceremoniously demoted to the AHL. He struggled in his first month there, becoming a healthy scratch as rumors of his displeasure regarding his demotion ran rampant.

Despite all that, DeAngelo finished out a strong AHL campaign with a line of 2-11-13 in 29 games, most of that coming after his issues in the first month. DeAngelo earned a call up after the Rangers announced their plans to rebuild. In that final stretch, DeAngelo wasn’t dominant on the ice, but he wasn’t a huge liability.

This year DeAngelo was slated to make the team because of his waiver status. Even with a poor preseason –of which he did not have– he was going to at least start the year with the club. Luckily for him, DeAngelo was one of the better defensemen in camp and earned his spot on the team.

The work for DeAngelo isn’t done yet. He will need to perform on the ice. He will need to produce results at even strength and on the powerplay, all while putting his defensive issues to bed. Perhaps more importantly, depending on who you ask, DeAngelo will need to show a willingness to toe that aggressive line without stepping into hate speech and bigotry. He will also need to tone down some of his social media activity. That may not sit well with everyone, but that’s the life of a professional athlete.

Should DeAngelo be able to conquer all these challenges, he will have dug himself out of a hole that he himself dug. A changed DeAngelo both on and off the ice benefits the Rangers. HoweverDeAngelo will be 23 in a few weeks, which is the make or break year for a lot of prospects. Should he not take that next step forward, there are too many good defense prospects in the pipe to take his place. In that scenario, DeAngelo’s window with the Rangers may close faster than it opened.

"For DeAngelo, this is a make or break season", 5 out of 5 based on 7 ratings.

43 thoughts on “For DeAngelo, this is a make or break season

  • Oct 3, 2018 at 6:09 am

    Of course, it doesn’t help that players like Staal and McQuaid are in the line up instead of DeAngelo, which is where the Rangers lose me a little bit relating to their “rebuild.”

    If this season doesn’t matter for wins then put in the younger guys:

    Staal (It’s inevitable boys and girls)-DeAngelo

    Then Hajek and Lindgren replace Staal and Smith after the trade deadline.

    • Oct 3, 2018 at 8:14 am

      Let us pray

    • Oct 3, 2018 at 8:41 am

      Hajek and Lindgren are not ready and will be better served for their development logging 20 minutes a game in Hartford. This is the last chance for ADA – he’ll get plenty of opportunity this season and it’s probably a 50% chance at best that he can make it in what is his 3rd chance in the league. At his age if he flames out here he is likely a career minor leaguer.

      This narrative that the rebuild means that all our good prospects should be playing with the Rangers, whether they’re ready or not, is just wrong. Helps noone.

      As far as Staal I doubt DQ has any loyalty to him and if he is just a pylon out there he won’t play much. In fairness he was probably our best defenseman last year, as pathetic as that may be.

      • Oct 3, 2018 at 9:19 am

        Talk about narratives that help no one, that whole “Staal was NYR’s best defenseman last year” narrative is bogus. Staal isn’t an NHL defenseman anymore, he’s a shadow of a once-promising player. He has his brother Eric and a slap shot to the face to thank for that.

        • Oct 3, 2018 at 9:45 am

          So true, so true …

        • Oct 3, 2018 at 9:55 am

          Staal did not embarrass himself last year…but I don’t recall anyone saying he was our best D man

      • Oct 3, 2018 at 9:53 am

        I think Hajek and Lindgren will def be Ranger D men soon

        • Oct 3, 2018 at 11:44 am

          Hajek is close and could be a late season call up Lindgren is not as close as we were told he may be 2 or 3 years away but we’ll see how he does with the Pack

          • Oct 3, 2018 at 3:24 pm

            I think Hajek is closer than that. If not for the McQuaid trade, the Claesson signing and having to keep Staal in the fold he would have easily have made the team … he looked that good in training camp. Re: Lindgren, if they move a couple of d’men this summer he can make the team next year — although Crawley looked pretty good himself and we’ll have Rykov coming over.

            Honestly I think there’s the making of a very good set of d’men in the next couple of years — no gamebreakers, but a lot of steady, good breakout d’men … then add the 2 we drafted this year and Joey Keane.

    • Oct 3, 2018 at 12:20 pm

      I really like this Hajek guy. He stays very involved.

    • Oct 3, 2018 at 8:48 pm

      I don’t see Smith being traded. The way Quinn talks about him makes me believe he will be around. Especially if his play is back to where was when he was acquired.

  • Oct 3, 2018 at 7:11 am

    Youth should set the table up and down the lineup. Let’s give Tony a clean slate and see how he does.

  • Oct 3, 2018 at 7:33 am

    Anthony, prove your worth, it’s in your court. The time has come for him to “Crap, or get off the pot”. Nuff said!

  • Oct 3, 2018 at 8:06 am

    Bust. Period.

  • Oct 3, 2018 at 9:02 am

    Unfortunately org made mistake by bringing McQuaid , Claesson and keeping Staal….. dude just will not get his chance to get adapt himself or the same going to happen with Pionk

    • Oct 3, 2018 at 9:57 am

      Moves like that show me JG is not a good GM

      • Oct 3, 2018 at 11:00 am

        Agree Bloomer…….Too many blunders so far for Gorton….are we rebuilding or not? If so why bringing in all the veterans? Why are Stall and mccleod in the lineup? Namestikov is only a 4th liner? We traded Miller for him? Andersson was a 7th overall pick, really? Who does our scouting?

        And DAVE…..ENOUGH bringing up DeAngelos past comments……..You never said anything as a 18-19-20 year old that you regret or would say now? Hate speech is a RIDICULOUS term which no one can even define! Lay off the kid, he is a talented 23 year old who should get a chance ……….

        • Oct 3, 2018 at 11:38 am

          I hear DeAngelo likes beer. He drank beer when he was in high school. He drinks beer now. He still likes beer

          • Oct 3, 2018 at 11:40 am

            Hysterical!!!!!!! Great Post!!!!!!! Got me rolling……

          • Oct 3, 2018 at 3:26 pm

            I hear his nickname is Ralph … or was that Bart?!

        • Oct 3, 2018 at 1:21 pm

          It would be irresponsible of me to write a post about DeAngelo’s make or break year without bringing up his abuse of officials and off-ice issues which have contributed to two teams trading him already. It’s a factor, whether you like it or not.

          • Oct 3, 2018 at 6:14 pm

            Why would it be irresponsible of you not to bring up something that happened 3 or 4 years ago when he was a teen or 20 year old and hasnt happened since? Its not like he killed someone. Not irresponsible at all. Again, should we all still be hounded by things we did/ said years ago? The only person who ever lived a perfect life died some 2000 years ago.

            • Oct 3, 2018 at 11:28 pm

              You’re missing hte point. If you can’t grasp that I was bringing it up to paint the full picture of DeAngelo’s entry in to the NYR system, then there’s nothing more to discuss here.

    • Oct 3, 2018 at 11:46 am

      Let’s give it a couple of months but if hose 3 are still in the lineup after the first of the year we have a problem folks

  • Oct 3, 2018 at 9:22 am

    The Rangers Blueline was worse when Smith was sent down, Shattenkirk got hurt and Holden was traded. I agree that Delangelo, Poink and Gilmore have upside and provide a bit more offense but defensively they have a lot more to learn to adapt in the NHL. Out of the 3 mentioned I believe Delangelo is the most rounded and the most ready.

    Poink while offensively gifted and smart with the puck on his stick, he still needs to work on his game without the puck. He would be better served to spend a bit more time on the farm. This would make room for Delangelo to show what he has. If he doesn’t pan out, then it’s time the Rangers move him out.

    • Oct 3, 2018 at 10:17 am

      Pionk is actually underrated away from the puck. Before it’s all said and done, the fact will be that he’s a better shutdown defenceman than Skjei. His play around the puck is what makes his transition game go smoothly, he wins board battles and than regains possesion in one swoop. I can’t wait to watch him against other top line player’s.

  • Oct 3, 2018 at 9:56 am

    The Stepan trade is the USS Bismark right now

    • Oct 3, 2018 at 10:13 am

      Funny how two years ago the commentors seemed to think that we should trade Stepan for a bag of pucks. And don’t give me the BS about how we should have gotten more for him, unless you actually KNOW of a GM that would have offered more. Opinions and suppositions don’t cut it unless your sources are at least as good as THN’s.

      • Oct 3, 2018 at 10:30 am

        Ryan O’Reilly has been traded twice…for 9 pieces….We traded our #1 Center and still havent gotten a regular in our lineup in return

      • Oct 3, 2018 at 10:32 am

        Stepan was never going to bring back value from a true 1c. Yotes took advantage of that since that nobody was really in the market for him. The closes reports of anyone wanting him came in the summer of 2016. A team like Minny said he’s not worth their farm/young roster player’s. His value was dropping pretty fast after the 2016 playoffs. Let’s just say the World Cup of hockey didn’t help the cause lol. Establish clubs weren’t going to make room for a 6.5 million dollar 16 goal scorer.

  • Oct 3, 2018 at 11:01 am

    Stepan was traded as much for his contract as it was for his putrid output. He was never a very good player and the return was thin. Many of the defenseman now in the system (Hajek and Lindgren) were acquired after the trade. These new players have strong potential (as did Tony D), but at a younger age, they seem to be real prospects where Tony D is now in a make or break scenario.

    The problem is guys like Claesson & McQuaid are going to take minutes away from Tony D, making him a bust by default.

    • Oct 3, 2018 at 1:57 pm

      Nah it mainly happened because his output lol. When you have a center in his prime who could put up 50-55 points and gain all that wisdom and experience from previous runs back in 2012, 2014 and 2015 and you still get rid of him, than there’s alot more points that got triggered to why he got shipped ASAP. JG ran behind the NTC to soften any blow back, he was overrated and needed to go!

      • Oct 3, 2018 at 5:15 pm

        Smart: Derek Stepan, 50+ points yearly except for rookie year and almost hit it in a lockout year, isn’t worth $6+ million and a NTC.

        Smarter: Kevin Hayes, he who’s never even hit 50pts ever, is worth $6+ million and a NTC.

    • Oct 3, 2018 at 3:36 pm

      Stepan was traded because of the value of his contract relative to his performance but MOSTLY because his NTC clause was about to kick in.

      Over time, longer term contract value and production tend to even out as the overall inflation of contracts takes place league wide.

      NTC though, can be a hard stop, and in this case it was rightfully one.

      Two years from know if (when?) Tony D and Lias are killing it then we will all be saying it was a steal.

      • Oct 3, 2018 at 4:37 pm

        Mostly because his clause was going to kick in aka he’s not worth tying down to. He was only 26 yrs old and even if he was 28, it’s not like it’snormal for teams to do that before their top 6 center clause kicks in lol. That was just a front for the public to justify on why they wanted to trade, some ate it up while other’s saw it for what it really was. Next to 1-2 teams rarely ever do that and if they do it’s because the player wasn’t worth KEEPING AROUND. You can try to act like it’s a normal process before guy’s NTC kicks that teams tend to trade their guys but in reality it’s not, they dumped him and AZ knew it so they took advantage and made Rannta apart of the package. In the recent past, Sather has called him out in two different offseasons and has played hard ball with him once and JG has done the same in a different offseason, anyone could see that he was never going to get his chance to play his contract out as a NYR., he wasn’t worth the headache to the FO with his overrated skills. I believe he admitted during a interview with the NHL news reporter of being aware that JG shopped him in his first season year under that 6.5 million dollar contract. His World Cup of hockey and 2017 season was why nobody lined up at the door for him.

        • Oct 3, 2018 at 9:15 pm

          I totally agree that teams typically do not trade guys just because an NTC is kicking in. But it is certainly a consideration if the team was not happy with the production.

          In Steps case – it was a foregone conclusion that he was out the door and that might have actually influenced the return.

          Honestly, I was more upset that Raanta was included.

          There is a lot of judging going on with this trade but honestly we are not in a position to really analyze the return as both guys are simply too young.

          Finding out that you won the deal two years from now is better than just being unhappy with the return as it stands now.

  • Oct 3, 2018 at 12:22 pm

    I am hoping that they give Tony a real shot to prove whether or not he can make it in the NHL. Hopefully carrying 8 defenders is not going to limit his opportunity to do so. I think he has all the tools; maybe it is just that his learning curve was a little steeper than others. When he was with the Coyotes it seemd that no one played defense, and Tony was always pinching in and freewheeling. Now he seems to get it in the D zone. Whether he gets it well enough has to be seen. I’d like to see him make it.

  • Oct 3, 2018 at 12:22 pm

    You may be right that “The talent and skill level are there” but I am going to take issue with it. ADA certainly has a large skill set – that no one can deny. But a successful player needs a complete set of complementary skills. And a player with a vast skill set, but one gaping hole really doesn’t have the talent and skill to succeed.

    I don’t profess to understand DeAngelo as a player. At the start of last year, he seemed to have a good attitude. He looked good on the ice MOST of the time. But there were enough miscues and lapses that he was actually a bad player. These things seem like they should be correctible and he looks like he wants to, but the fact that he hasn’t pulled it off yet hints that maybe it is not actually possible, that there is a hidden critical talent deficiency.

  • Oct 3, 2018 at 12:32 pm

    27th. Power ranking out of preseason. That’s good for a top 5 pick in the draft.

    Who we gonna pic with that high draft pick?

    • Oct 3, 2018 at 7:02 pm

      We won’t suck that hard. Top 8 maybe if we’re lucky (at sucking).

  • Oct 3, 2018 at 8:06 pm

    I honestly haven’t read one comment on here that leads me to believe anyone can judge a defenseman. I mean Giardi sucks, mac sucks, staal sucks, followed with Yandle is the greatest or at least better than those 3. Yandle left as a free agent and what did he get? Yes I know salary but has he seen a playoff series since he left? And aside from the clowns on here…Management can’t properly assess their own players. Giving giardi a huge contract after all those punishing playoff runs, staal a huge contract after losing an eye and trading mac for some maybes and not even the team’s top maybes. Just so I am clear there is not one defender left from those cup runs except staal. And the D had to be pretty good to make all those runs cause the forwards were never that good since we traded them away for pucks.

    ADA needs a staal(or someone like him) as a linemate to succeed. Someone who can cover up for all his gambles on the offensive side of the puck. Just like mac needed giardi for the same reason. I see ADA as a ghostibere type. A free rover, good possession defender. Similar to skjei just not as defensively sound. Not saying skjei is all that sound. ADA can be a real weapon if given the right partner and enough time to form a solid connection with his partner. So each can learn when the other will push up. I see Quinn as a routine type of guy. So here is too ADA finding that perm partner and having a successful season. I think 40 to 50 points is not that crazy if given 20 minutes a night and a steady pairing. Staal should work great with him cause what staal lacks in speed ADA can cover for that and what ADA lacks in positioning and reading a play Staal will help him.

    Just to prove my point Mac played as a 1st D pair every time he played for the USA in international games. Yandle was never once on USA team in the olympics.

    • Oct 3, 2018 at 9:25 pm

      Decent argument but a BIG thumbs down for the clown comment.

      Love Bozo

      • Oct 3, 2018 at 10:05 pm

        Thanks! Love a fellow bozo.

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