Last season saw the emergence of many good rookies, such as Jack Eichel, Filip Forsberg, Artemi Panarin and Connor McDavid. But Shayne Gostisbehere of the Philadelphia Flyers was one of the most exciting and promising players to emerge from last year.
Gostisbehere was coming off of a 2014-15 season where he tore his ACL and played just five AHL games. The Union College grad played in a full-time role for the first time last season, featuring in 64 games and scoring 17 goals and 29 assists (46 points). The 17 goals was a Flyers record for goals by a rookie defenseman. He also had a 15-game scoring streak, which was the longest by a defenseman in the last 20 years, and also was the first rookie to score four overtime goals.
He played on the top pairing against some of the top players in the league and was certainly a strong and effective defender. He was lauded for his ability to transition quickly, easily able to recover from a turnover and get back on defense. A great skater, an excellent passer and scorer, and a power play quarter back (8-14-22 on the power play last season), Gostisbehere had the look of an elite defenseman. Read the rest of this entry
The Rangers (32-18-6) exacted the type of revenged they promised after Wayne Simmonds concussed Ryan McDonagh eight days ago, coming away with a great 3-1 win over the rival Philadelphia Flyers (24-21-10) on home ice, continuing their incredible success at Madison Square Garden.
The Rangers have a 10 game point streak at home (8-0-2), with points in 11 of the last 12 games at the Garden. They have a 20-4-2 record in their last 26 games at Madison Square Garden, and they lead the NHL in wins (nine) and points (19) since January 16th.
The first period started exactly how we all expected it would; with a fight. Dylan McIlrath and Wayne Simmonds were talking during warmups, and they dropped the gloves just 39 seconds into the game. It was a good fight, both guys got in some solid punches and headed to the penalty box.
— Dave Shapiro (@BlueSeatBlogs) February 15, 2016
With 30 games left in the regular season, the playoff race is getting tight, and the Rangers (29-18-5) know how important these remaining games are. Rick Nash was still out of the lineup with a bone bruise, but Kevin Klein returned after missing the previous game with a fractured thumb. After a wild back-and-forth contest, the Rangers came away with a 3-2 shootout win on the road.
The rivalry was felt in the early stages of the game as both teams traded chances. Stepan had a takeaway at the blueline, but his pass was stolen, and the Flyers came down the ice. Mark Streit skated in on Lundqvist, but he shot it wide. Read the rest of this entry
The Rangers made a few more significant cuts following their win over the New Jersey Devils, cutting down the roster to just 25 players; 15 forwards, eight defenseman and two goalies. Vigneault will have to cut two more forwards and likely one defenseman.
The Rangers reassigned Luke Adam, Ryan Bourque, Brian Gibbons, Ryan Graves, Chris Summers, Mat Bodie, Brady Skjei and Magnus Hellberg, and they will report to Hartford’s training camp.
Vigneault’s latest roster moves means that we’re in the final stages of the cuts. Dylan McIlrath is still fighting for a spot and Jayson Megna, Oscar Lindberg and Jarret Stoll are still looking to get Tanner Glass out of the lineup. Read the rest of this entry
As Vigneault said, the Rangers continued to make their roster cuts, reducing to just over six forward lines, 12 defensemen and three goalies. With just three preseason games remaining, we’re in the final stretch of roster decisions.
The Rangers assigned five players to the Wolf Pack training camp. Marek Hrivik, Brett Bellemore, Adam Tambellini, Tommy Hughes and Jeff Malcolm all reported to Hartford for their camp.
This will be Tambellini’s first season in the AHL, and he’s one of my favorite prospects. I’m excited to see how he does this season. I’m also happy that Bellemore wasn’t cut from the roster completely. He was pretty good in the preseason game, and has some NHL experience, so it’s nice depth to have. Read the rest of this entry