Nick Bonino

Bonino To Be Placed On Waivers

Forward Nick Bonino is expected to be put on waivers today, and will likely be sent down to Hartford after a tough stretch of games for the Rangers. With the team as a whole struggling, Bonino still stands out with the team worst (for players with more than 1 game) Corsi For% of 37.76 when he’s on the ice. In layman’s terms, teams get around 2 shots for every 1 that the Rangers put towards the opposing net.

Replacing him on the roster is center Jake Leschyshyn. It’s hard to see Leschyshyn really being much of an upgrade, but with just two games before the All Star break, it’ll give Peter Laviolette and the Rangers to assess their depth options.

Signed this Summer to a one year, $800,000 deal, Bonino was one of several low-cost options that the Rangers brought in to fill out their roster. Jonathan Quick, and to some extent, Erik Gustafsson have proven their value, while Bonino and veteran Blake Wheeler have probably underperformed expectations.

While Sam Rosen is prone to point out Bonino’s shot blocking prowess – he lead the NHL in blocks by a forward – there has been little else in his game that has made an impression. Vincent Trocheck did credit Bonino for his improvement in the face-off circle this season, but they overall performance has been lacking.

Even when given a chance to play on the third line with players like Will Cuylle, Blake Wheeler and Johnny Brodzinski, Bonino has not found success, leading to a healthy scratch in favor of Tyler Pitlick just three games ago.

The Rangers will likely assign the 35 year old to Hartford, assuming he is not claimed on waivers. From there they’ll hope he somehow stabilizes his game, and perhaps could be a depth call up later should the team suffer more injuries, but for the moment his career could be on the brink of ending.

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