The NHL Network has released its Top 50 Players Right Now, and Artemi Panarin sits at number four on the list. Panarin was behind Connor McDavid, Nathan MacKinnon, and, laughably, Leon Draisaitl. I say laughably because while Draisaitl is very good, he did not account for 35% of his teams wins last year, like Panarin.
Panarin carried the Rangers to the play-in round last season. Without him, the Rangers would have been in the bottom-five of the league. Worth noting that without him, the Rangers would not have won the draft lottery, thus getting Alexis Lafreniere. Granted that has nothing to do with Panarin, but worth stating.
Artemi Panarin being ranked among the top players right now was a given. Panarin is going to be a key cog in the Rangers’ success this season. As he goes, the Rangers will go.