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RUMOR MILL

Tuesday - October 25th

Either Josh Jooris (New York Daily News) or Dylan McIlrath are likely to find themselves on waivers when Pavel Buchnevich returns from back spasms.

The team is expected to cut the roster down to 22 players, and as such one of the two will need to be either moved or sent down.

  MORE RUMORS...

Question Of The Day

September 29th, 2017

How many rostered players were on the ice for opening night 2016-17

Answer...
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John McDonald - 1921

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FLOYD SMITH
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Does Skjei make the cut?

Camp Cutdowns Still Coming
Posted by Michael M. Ramos ≡ 8:53:07 AM - October 4, 2016

10/11/2016 The Rangers have announced that Rick Nash will serve as an alternate captain this season. That will make 4 assistant captains. Is their really a need for 4 of them? Maybe something in the works with the official NHL rosters due at 5 pm today? Keven Klein is not on the ice for the 2nd straight day. At his reasonable price and another year on his contract, he could easily be a piece of a deal for a team looking for a top 4 defenseman. The next few hours should be exciting while all the teams finish rounding out their rosters. As I wrote the other day, if Nathan Gerbe didn't make the Rangers, he would fulfill his contract overseas and today he refused to report to the Hartford Wolfpack and is on waivers to give him his release from his NHL contract.

 

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10/7/2016  Tanner Glass and Nathan Gerbe have been placed on waivers. Boo Nieves has been assigned to the Hartford Wolfpack. Gabriel Fontaine has been asigned to his junior team as expected, recovering from a camp injury. The only player that I had predicted to be removed from the Rangers camp and not make the starting regular season roster is Josh Jooris, who played in his first full game last night after a groin injury early in the first preseason game. Expect him to get a "fair" look before he is released to play overseas. If Oscar Lindberg is placed on I.R. to start the season, Jooris could hang on as the 13th forward, but that doesn't seem like a  G.M. Gorton would do as it could hamper Jooris' chance of playing overseas on a regular basis.

With all the Ranger players making it through waivers so far, the Rangers have the most depth in the system that are NHL ready than they have had for decades. At every position, the Rangers have a player to be called up when injuries occur that will be able to help the team win and not just fill a hole created by the injury!

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10/6/2016 Goalie Magnus Hellberg has been placed on waivers today and will report to Hartford if he clears.  All Rangers players that have been placed on waivers so far this offseason have cleared including Jensen and Hrivik from yesterday

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10/5/2016 Marek Hrivik,John Gilmour, Ryan Graves, Robin Kovacs, Malte Stromwall, Mackenzie Skapski, and Nicklas Jensen have been placed on waivers.  All players yesterday cleared waivers and will report to the AHL Hartford Wolfpack except for Maxin Lapierre who is no longer associated with the New York Rangers organization at this time

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UPDATED: This afternoon the Rangers have placed 4 players on waivers for the purpose of assignment to Hartford if not picked up another team: Defensemen Matt Bodie, Tommy Hughes, and Chris Summers along with forward Chris Brown. Also, PTO Maxim Lapierre has been released from his tryout. He is looking to play overseas this year.

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Going into this offseason, everyone that follows the Rangers knew there would be changes. After a very strong run of the last few years that ended just short of winning the ultimate prize, last years Rangers were the walking wounded and bowed out early in the firt round to the eventual Stanley Cup winners in easy fashion. That group had their one last chance together. This offseason saw General Manager Jeff Gorton not only change his NHL team, but also purge the AHL and prospect pool. There were free agents allowed to walk away, prospects not tendered as to cut them loose from the organization, and a trade or two to change the makeup and make this coming Rangers team younger by an average age of over 2 years per player.

Going into tonights preseason game against the Islanders in Brooklyn, the Rangers still have 23 forwards, 12 defensemen, and 4 goalies. Some of the cuts seem pretty easy to see, but with coach Alain Vigneault pushing to keep certain players, who knows what the official last cuts will be. Players that Coach Vigneault seems to be pushing for is again Tanner Glass and a player on a PTO in Maxim Lapierre. How either of those players can knock out any of Chris Kreider-Mika Zibanejab-Pavel Buchnevich/ Rick Nash-Derek Stepan-Mats Zuccarello/Brandon Pirri-Kevin Hayes-Jimmy Vesey/ or Michael Grabner-J.T. Miller-Jesper Fast (possible lines) would be astonishing, but weirder things happen in professional sports. That is also leaving Oscar Lindberg on injured reserve to start the season as the 13th forward. One would think that even Nathan Gerbe and Josh Jooris(inj.) bring more to the plate than Vigneault's ex-player and 4th line favorite. So, to me it would seem the writing s on the wall for Gabriel Fonatiane to return to Jr's, Jooris and Gerbe to be suspended from their contracts so they can play overseas where they already have contracts as a fallback plan, Maxim Lapeirre to be released from his PTO and he should be able to catch on with a team like the Carolina Hurricanes that could use a 4th liner with NHL experience. That would leave Hartford getting a solid group of forwards in Marek Hrivik, Nicklas Jensen, Robin Kovacs, Christoval Nieves, Malte Stromwall, and veteran Tanner Glass.

On the defensive end is where the things get very interesting. Last season the defesne looked old and slow, but neither is true. They really were  just beaten up, worn down, and injured. Getting knocked out so early in the playoffs for the first time in many years, let the injuries heal and the players get a chance to relax a few months before getting ready for this season. Dan Girardi has alot to prove this season. There have been many calling for a buyout or trade of the oldest Rangers dman of 32. The next dmen that has been a mainstay on the Rangers blueline for years has been Marc Staal, who is at the age of 29. Because of his eye and concussion injuries, Staal isn't what he once was but he is still a solid top 4 defensemen in the NHL. Captain McDonagh played this summer for Team USA and didn't get as much rest, but will be ready to carry the pressure as the Rangers top defenseman. That takes us to the Rangers most under rated dman in KK-Kevin Klein, who at 31 always gives everything he has and should make his way into the top 4 this season. Great deals by Gorton this offseason that nobody knows about are the next  two dmen that could easily make up the 3rd pairing of Nick Holden and Adam Clendening. Holden was brought in by the Rangers for only a 4th round pick, which seems like a steal for a large man on the backend (6'4" 217 pounds) that can play both sides and he averaged 20 minutes per game last season. Adam Clendening was a player I was hoping the Rangers would sign after being cut loose this summer from his RFA contract and the Rangers grabbed him up quickly. He has shown the Rangers that he can help on the powerplay while also getting 2nd/3rd pairing minutes this preseason. It seems that his preseason has seen him jump ahead of Brady Skjei and Dylan McIlrath as he brings different aspects that they do not at this time. With Coach Vigneault stating that he wants to go with 8 dmen this season, the McDonagh, Klein, Staal, Clendening, Holden, Girardi, Skjei, and McIlrath group looks very strong and will lead to a season long competition for playing time...something the Rangers haven't had for the last few years. That would mean the Hartford will be getting Matt Bodie, John Gilmour, Ryan Graves, and Chris Summers soon.

Between the pipes is where it seems clear cut... Henrik Lundqvist is the starter (coach expects around only 65 starts) and Antii Raanta as his solid backup. It looks like Machenzie Skapski and Hellberg will share the duties for the Wolfpack.

Now let's be realistic, with certain players needing to get through waivers (Jensen, Bodie, Summers, Hrivik, Gerbe, and Jooris) some of the players in the organization could easily change. I wouldn't be surprised if G.M. Gorton still has a few moves he wants to make before the final roster is turned into the NHL offices to start the season. There are right handed defensemen out there, mainly Shattenkirk and Trouba, which would clearly make the Rangers a better team depending on what has to back the other way.

Looking at Hartford Wolfpack's website, they already have a veteran team signed with 13 forwards, 6 defensemen, and 3 goalies. You add what the Rangerswill send down that will leave them with 19 forwards, 10 defensemen, and 5 goalies at the AHL level. Granted that many of the players already on the Wolfpack lineup are signed to AHL contracts, so they could be sent down to the ECHL Greenville Road Warriors to make room. Seems like there are too many players for too few spots in the organization, but we'll shortly see.

Let the games begin!!!!

LET'S GO RANGERS!!!!




 Additional stories from Michael M. Ramos:


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