New York Rangers: Morgan Barron set to make season debut

morgan barron, rangers

Barron, a sixth-round pick from the 2017 draft, is set to make his season debut when the New York Rangers visit Nashville tonight.

Reports from New York Rangers practice indicate that center/left winger Morgan Barron will make his 2021-22 season debut when the Blueshirts battle the Nashville Predators on Thursday night (8 p.m. ET, MSG). Barron’s presumed arrival stems from a report from Newsday’s Colin Stephenson, which indicated that Julian Gauthier, Libor Hajek, and Jarred Tinordi were set to be the team’s healthy scratches.

Barron was the Rangers’ sixth-round pick in the 2017 draft (174th overall), chosen through a pick acquired from San Jose. He made his NHL debut through five games with the team last season, earning his first Ranger goal on May 5 against Washington after earning 21 points in 21 games with AHL Hartford. Barron added two further goals in a pair of games with the Wolf Pack this year including the game-winner in last Friday’s season-opening win over Bridgeport.

A Nova Scotia native and Cornell alum, Barron was called up after Kaapo Kakko left last Saturday’s win over Montreal with an upper-body injury. Kakko has since been placed on injured reserve while the Rangers (2-1-1) are also missing Ryan Strome, who remains in COVID-19 protocol.

Barron has earned praise for his leadership abilities, which were prominently displayed as a captain at both Cornell and St. Andrew’s College in Ontario. He’ll likely appear on the Rangers’ fourth line as on the left wing alongside Ryan Reaves and centered by Greg McKegg.

In other roster news, Igor Shesterkin is expected to make his fourth consecutive start after missing last week’s season opener, per USA Today’s Vince Z. Mercogliano. Shesterkin made 40 saves in Monday’s 2-1 overtime win in Toronto and will be making his first career start against Nashville (1-2-0).

Geoff Magliocchetti is on Twitter @GeoffJMags

Rangers’ will need to rely on depth with Strome and Kakko out of the lineup

The New York Rangers find themselves down two top-six forwards and will need to rely on their depth in Hartford to continue winning games.

The New York Rangers have played three games (1-1-1) and have three games remaining on this road trip in which the lineup has dramatically changed.

The team will have to rely on their depth with both Ryan Strome and Kaapo Kakko post of the lineup.

In Saturday night’s win over the Montreal Canadiens, the Blueshirts played without center Ryan Strome. He is currently in Covid protocol with no timetable of when he will return to the lineup.

Kaapo Kakko was injured in that game during the first period. He didn’t return to the game and on Sunday was placed on injured reserve with what the team has listed as an upper-body injury. Per the NHL Collective Bargaining Agreement, Kakko will be out at least for the next seven days. He is eligible to return this Saturday when the Rangers visit the Ottawa Senators.

Stepping Up

The Blueshirts, who are unable to recall Vitali Kravtsov as he has opted to go back to Russia, recalled Greg McKegg for the Montreal game and then recalled Morgan Barron following the Kakko IR designation.

These are the times where the team’s depth will be tested. During the Rangers media session after their win Saturday night, forward Sammy Blais mentioned the challenge of having two layers out of the lineup,

“Obviously we have two good players out of the lineup, everyone is going to have to chip in more”

The Rangers will play four games in the next seven days beginning with their game in Toronto on Monday.

Head coach Gerard Gallant will have top layer his lines with both Strome and Kakko normally playing on the second line along with Artemi Panarin.

The team held an optional practice Sunday and in Gallant’s media session he was not ready to commit to who would be in the lineup for Monday’s game.

New York Rangers host the Dallas Stars in their home opener Thursday

The New York Rangers will face the Dallas Stars as they take to the Garden ice for their 95th home opener.

New York Rangers- 0-1-0
Dallas Stars-            0-0-0
Venue: Madison Square Garden
TV: MSG Network

 

The New York Rangers play their second game of the season on Thursday night when the team celebrates their home opening game against the Dallas Stars on Thursday night.

The Blueshirt are coming off a 5-1 loss to the Washington Capitals in a game that saw the Rangers take nine penalties. They allowed four power-play goals in the nine times they were shorthanded.

New York connected on their first goal of the season on a power-play opportunity in the third period. The Rangers finished the night 1-for-5 on the power play. Last season, the Rangers ranked 14th in the NHL in power-play efficiency (20.7%) and ranked tied for eighth in the NHL in power-play goals (37) last season. (NYRPR)

Projected Lines

Lafreniere-Zibanejad-Kreider
Panarin-Strome-Kakko
Blais-Chytil-Goodrow
Reaves-Rooney-Gauthier

Fox-Lindgren
Trouba-Miller
Nemeth-Lundkvist

Shesterkin

Notes From Wednesday’s Loss To Washington

– Chris Kreider put the Rangers on the board for the first time in 2021-22 with his 59th career power-play goal and 347th career point. His 59 power-play goals tie Andy Bathgate for the 12th most PPG’s in franchise history. Kreider’s 347 points are four away from tying Petr Nedved (351) for the 27th most in franchise history.

– Adam Fox notched his first point of the season with an assist on Kreider’s goal. Over the last two seasons (2020-21 – 2021-22), Fox has 22 power-play assists, the third-most in the NHL and second among defensemen (Hedman – 23).

– Ryan Strome also earned an assist on Kreider’s goal, earning him points in eight of his last nine games (3G-7A) against Washington. In 33 career games against the Capitals, Strome has eight goals and 18 assists for 36 points.

– Six players (Jarred Tinordi, Patrik Nemeth, Barclay Goodrow, Dryden Hunt, Ryan Reaves, Sammy Blais) made their Rangers debut tonight. Out of that pack, Goodrow led the way with two shots and Reaves had five hits.

– Gerard Gallant coached his first game with the Rangers, the fourth team (CBJ, FLA, VGK, NYR) he has manned the bench for in his career. Gallant is the 36th head coach in franchise history. Gallant now carries a 270-217-4-51 (W-L-T-OT) record over his head coaching career.

– Alexandar Georgiev made his 90th career start for the Rangers, making 22 saves in the loss. Georgiev is the 19th goaltender in team history to start in 90 or more games.

Rangers’ loss in Washington displays team’s inefficiencies on the ice and behind the bench

The New York Rangers’ loss to the Capitals on Wednesday night confirms that this team has plenty of work ahead of them, on the ice and behind the bench.

The New York Rangers began their 2021-2022 season with a 5-1 loss to the Washington Capitals. It is only one loss, game one of 82 on the schedule, but there were some familiarities to last season the club needs to get away from if they want to put together wins.

Georgiev Gets The Start

The lineup was questioned almost immediately when Alexandar Georgiev led the team onto the ice.  Why was Igor Shesterkin sitting for the first game of the season? Did the back-to-back schedule of games having the team in Washington on Wednesday and then playing their home opener on Thursday play that big of a factor in this decision?

Gerard Gallant was asked about his decision in his post-game presser and really didn’t have a concrete answer as to why he went with Georgiev telling Vince Mercogliano,

“No, not really. Obviously, we’ve got back-to-back games and I think Georgie played real well. I don’t think there’s any issue with the goals with Georgie.”

Georgiev made some good saves, but overalled seemed to struggle at times.  The Rangers gave up two goals in 24 seconds in the second period giving the Capitals a 3-0 lead at the time.  That third goal is one Georgiev would definitely want back. It once again showed that he needs to find a way to make the big save that can stop the opposition’s momentum.

Georgiev made 22 saves on 27 shots in the game taking the loss.

Unusual Lineup

An opening night lineup that saw rookie Nils Lunkvist watching the game, and Jared Tinordi lacing up his skates for the game was a direct result of the club being concerned about the rough style of game that was anticipated to have. This team already had a hard-hitting Sammy Blais and Ryan Reaves penciled in to play, why sit Lundkvist then?

The bottom six of the team’s lineup had Filip Chytil centering Sammy Blais and Barclay Goodrow and Kevin Rooney in the middle of Ryan Reaves and Dryden Hunt.

Other than some big hits, neither line produced many scoring chances.

The Rangers scored just one goal, on the power play, by Chris Kreider in the third period.  The special teams were a thorn in the team’s backside throughout the game.

The team took nine penalties allowing four power-play goals. With the man advantage, the Blueshirts managed just one goal in eight opportunities.

This is an area the club had relied on to improve in the offseason, but it is apparently more work is needed to be done.

A New Day

Tonight the Rangers will be back on the ice again, this time at Madison Square Garden. Their home opener welcomes the Dallas Stars and hopefully a better outcome than on Wednesday night.

Gallant has already announced the Igor Shesterkin will be in the net and one could assume that the head coach will insert Lundkvist and forward Julien Gauthier into the lineup in hopes of generating some more offense.

It may be early in the season but this team needs to find its identity early and get some good line chemistry with the tough schedule the team has ahead of them. The Blueshirts only have two home games, after tonight’s game, in the next 10 games.

This team needs to do everything it can not to fall into the quicksand and find ways to keep even with the rest of the league and division.

Rangers finalize roster, Kravtsov sent to AHL Hartford

The New York Rangers have finalized their roster with Vitali Kravtsov among the players sent to Hartford.

With training camp officially concluded, the New York Rangers have their 23 player roster set for opening night in Washington. Surprisingly Vitali Kravtsov will not be on the ice or in the press box on Wednesday night as he was one of the players sent down to the AHL.

The Rangers announced the team has assigned Morgan Barron, Vitali Kravtsov, and Greg McKegg, to the Hartford Wolf Pack of the American Hockey League (AHL) on Monday afternoon.

  • Barron, 22, played in four games for the Rangers this preseason, recording four shots.
  • Kravtsov, 21, scored one goal, on the power play, in three preseason games.
  • McKegg, 29, skated in four preseason games for the Rangers, recording two shots.

23 Man Roster

Here is the 23 man roster the team will begin the 2021-2022 season with.

Forwards (13)

Sammy Blais
Filip Chytil
Julien Gauthier
Barclay Goodrow
Dryden Hunt
Kaapo Kakko
Chris Kreider
Alexis Lafreniere
Artemi Panarin
Ryan Reaves
Kevin Rooney
Ryan Strome
Mika Zibanejad

Defense (8)

Adam Fox
Libor Hajek
Ryan Lindgren
Nils Lundkvist
K’Andre Miller
Patrik Nemeth
Jarred Tinordi
Jacob Trouba

Goalie (2)
Igor Shesterkin
Alexandar Georgiev

 

Rangers rookie Nils Lundkvist wins Lars-Erik Sjoberg award

The New York Rangers have announced that Nils Lundkvist has won the Lars-Erik Sjoberg award ass the top rookie in training camp.

The New York Rangers have announced the winner of this year’s Lars-Erik Sjoberg Award. Defenseman Nils Lundkvist takes home the award which is given annually to the top Rangers rookie in Training Camp as selected by the media.

The 5-foot-11, 187-pound defenseman was drafted in the first round (28th overall) of the 2018 NHL Entry Draft. A Pitea, Sweden native, Lundkvist is playing in North America for the first time this season after spending parts of the last four years with Lulea HF of the Swedish Hockey League (SHL).

Lundkvist, 21, led all Rangers rookies this preseason with three points (three assists) in four games. His three points were tied for the most among New York defensemen and third-most among all Rangers skaters. (Via NYRPR)

In the preseason opener against the Islanders on Sept. 26, Lundkvist was one of two Rangers (Adam Fox) to skate in over 20 minutes with 21:11 TOI. On Oct. 1 in New Jersey, Lundkvist found his way on the scoresheet with an assist on fellow Swede, Mika Zibanejad’s goal. Playing in the second of a back-to-back on Oct. 2, in Boston, Lundkvist helped lead the Rangers to their overtime win with two assists in the first period of that game. For his final act of the preseason, Lundkvist recorded a shot in 18:44 minutes of ice time in the Blueshirts’ 6-2 win against New Jersey at Madison Square Garden.

Past Sjoberg Winners

The Lars-Erik Sjoberg Award, which was first presented in 1988, honors the memory of Lars-Erik Sjoberg, who was the Rangers chief European scout for eight years. During his tenure with the Blueshirts, Sjoberg played a prominent role in the team’s decision to draft Europeans such as Tomas Sandstrom, Jan Erixon, and Ulf Dahlen.

Lundkvist joins an impressive group of past winners of this award;

1988 Mike Richter

1989 Troy Mallette

1990 Steven Rice

1991 Tony Amonte

1992 Peter Andersson

1993 Mattias Norstrom

1994 Mattias Norstrom

1995 Niklas Sundstrom

1996 Eric Cairns

1997 Marc Savard

1998 Manny Malhotra

1999 Kim Johnsson

2000 Filip Novak

2001 Dan Blackburn

2002 Jamie Lundmark

2003 Dominic Moore

2005 Henrik Lundqvist

2006 Nigel Dawes and Brandon Dubinsky

2007 Marc Staal

2008 Lauri Korpikoski

2009 Matt Gilroy

2010 Derek Stepan

2011 Carl Hagelin

2013 Jesper Fast

2014 Anthony Duclair

2015 Oscar Lindberg

2016 Jimmy Vesey

2017 Filip Chytil

2018 Lias Andersson

2019 Adam Fox

2021 Nils Lundkvist

 

Lundkvist is expected to be on the opening night lineup and paired with veteran defenseman Patrik Nemeth. The Rangers will open their season on Wednesday in Washington and then head to Madison Square Garden for their home op[ener on Thursday night.

NewYork Rangers, Mika Zibanejad agree to 8-year contract extension

New York Rangers announced on Sunday morning that the club has agreed to terms with center Mike Zibanejad on an eight-year contract extension.

General manager and president Chris Drury made the announcement New York Rangers fans have been waiting for, the club has agreed to term on an eight-year extension with Mika Zibanejad.

“Since joining the team in 2016, Mika has emerged as one of the premier players in the NHL,” Drury said via an NYR press release. “In addition to being a great player on the ice, Mika is an exemplary person off of the ice. We are fortunate to have him as part of our Rangers organization and are excited that he will continue his career in New York.”

Larry Brooks of the New York Post is reporting that the AAV is in the $8.85million range.

Zibanejad, 28, skated in 56 games with the Rangers last season, registering 24 goals and 26 assists for 50 points, along with 18 penalty minutes. He led the Rangers in goals, game-winning goals (seven), and shots on goal (171), and ranked second on the team in points in 2020-21.

The 6-2, 200-pounder has skated in 604 career NHL games over parts of 10 seasons (2011-12 – 2020-21) with Ottawa and the Rangers, registering 200 goals and 234 assists for 434 points, along with 173 penalty minutes. Zibanejad has played five seasons with the Blueshirts (2016-17 – 2020-21), tallying 136 goals and 147 assists for 283 points in 323 games. He has skated in 31 postseason games in his NHL career, registering five goals and 14 assists for 19 points. In addition, the Stockholm, Sweden native will represent his country at the 2022 Winter Olympics.

Zibanejad was acquired by the Rangers from Ottawa on July 18, 2016. He was originally selected by the Senators in the first round, sixth overall, of the 2011 NHL Entry Draft.

Eichel Rumors Put To Rest

This most likely means the team is out of the Jack Eichel sweepstakes. The Rangers have been the team mentioned in most trade rumors s the Buffalo Sabres are looking to move their former captain. The AAV Zibanejad will be reportingly making would make it impossible for the Blueshirts to carry the $10 mollion AAV that Eichel’s contract currently has.

Captain

The Ranger’s next big announcement is due in the coming days who will be their next captain.  The contract extension will now put Zibanelad’s name in the mix along with Chris Kreider and Jacob Trouba.

 

New York Rangers news and notes: Final roster remains undecided

The New York Rangers training camp is entering its last week and head coach Gerard Gallant still has some tough decisions to make to get his roster to 23 players.

The New York Rangers split their two games this weekend.  On Friday night the team was embarrassed in a 7-1 loss in New Jersey against the Devils. The Blueshirts rebounded the following night in Boston as they won that contest 4-3 in overtime.

The coaching staff along with general manager Chris Drury has been hard at work putting the pieces together they feel will bring the best results when the season begins in just 10 days.

Roster Moves

Prior to Friday’s game against the Devils, the club announced that following being placed on waivers Anthony Greco, Jonny Brodzinski, Ty Ronning, Tim Gettinger, Anthony Bitetto, and Keith Kinkaid to the Hartford Wolf Pack of the American Hockey League (AHL).

Sunday saw more moves as the Rangers begin to see how their team will look for the final two preseason games this week.

The team cut its training camp roster down to 27 players as Will Cuylle has been assigned to his junior team, the Windsor Spitfires of the Ontario Hockey League (OHL), and Matthew Robertson, Braden Schneider, Lauri Pajuniemi, Tyler Wall, and Adam Huska have been assigned to the Hartford Wolf Pack of the American Hockey League (AHL).

The Rangers have 27 players remaining in Training Camp. The roster breakdown is listed below:

FORWARDS (16)

10 – Artemi Panarin
13 – Alexis Lafrenière
14 – Greg McKegg
15 – Julien Gauthier
16 – Ryan Strome
17 – Kevin Rooney
20 – Chris Kreider
21 – Barclay Goodrow
24 – Kaapo Kakko
29 – Dryden Hunt
47 – Morgan Barron
72 – Filip Chytil
74 – Vitali Kravtsov
75 – Ryan Reaves
91 – Sammy Blais
93 – Mika Zibanejad

DEFENSEMEN (9)

5 – Jarred Tinordi
6 – Zac Jones
8 – Jacob Trouba
12 – Patrik Nemeth
23 – Adam Fox
25 – Libor Hajek
55 – Ryan Lindgren
64 – Nils Lundkvist
79 – K’Andre Miller

GOALTENDERS (2)

31 – Igor Shesterkin
40 – Alexandar Georgiev

Upcoming Games

On Wednesday the Rangers will host the Devils at the Garden with a 7 p.m. faceoff. The preseason schedule concludes in Bridgeport, CT. where the team will play the Islanders.

Head coach Gallant still has not announced who the third defensive pairing will be or who the extra roster players will be once the season starts.  That should become clearer this week as the Blueshirts work out the kinks and fine-tune the team to be ready for opening night on Oct.13 in Washington.

New York Rangers: Comcast Infinity removes MSG Networks from its channel lineup

New York Rangers fans who use Comcast Infinity as its cable provider will need to finds another way to watch games now that they have dropped MSG Networks from its channel lineup.

Just as the New York Rangers are getting ready to begin the 2021-2022 season, fans who watch their beloved Blueshirts on Comcast Infinity will need to finds another way to watch games with the announcement that the cable network dumped MSG Networks from its lineup.

This change also affects fans of the New York Knicks, New Jersey Devils, and the New York Islanders.

MSG network released a statement this morning;

“Right when fans are looking forward to the start of the NBA and NHL seasons, Comcast dropped MSG Networks to try to force us to accept terms they’d never agree to for their own regional sports networks, including SNY in New York. They rejected proposals that are consistent with their current deal and deals we have with other major providers, as well as our offer to keep our programming on air under existing terms so we could continue to work on a longer-term agreement. And even though they’ve taken away hundreds of live Knicks, Devils, Rangers and Islanders games, they continue to charge Xfinity customers the same monthly rate — in addition to a regional sports fee that they increased 22% in January to more than $10 per month. Comcast’s refusal to negotiate is deeply disappointing.”

 

Fans who primarily reside in New Jersey and Connecticut will be the ones who have to deal with this issue. MSG Networks provide exclusive live professional games, beginning with tonight’s Rangers – Devils preseason game.

MSG Networks encourages fans to visit www.keepmsg.com to demand access to their teams and to learn how to switch to a provider that carries MSG Networks in their area.

 

New York Rangers pregame report: Game Day vs. Islanders

The New York have their first preseason game tonight as they host the New York Islanders at Madison Square Garden.

New York Rangers 0-0-0
New York Islanders 0-0-0
Venue: Madison Square Garden
Television: MSG Network

The New York Rangers will play their first of six preseason contests tonight as they host the New York Islanders at Madison Square Garden.

The Rangers will go with a lineup that will be a mixture of kids and veterans with head coach Gerard Gallant giving the younger players an opportunity to play.

Lineup

(Per Vince Mercogliano)

Chris Kreider – Mika Zibanejad – Alexis lafreniere
Barclay Goodrow – Filip Chytil – Vitali Kravtsov
Dylan Hunt – Morgan Barron – Julien Gauthier
Will Cuylle – Matt Rempe – Karl Henriksson

Ryan Lindgren – Adam Fox
Patrik Nemeth – Nils Lunkvist
Jarred Tinordi – Anthony Bitetto

Alexandar Georgiev
Adam Huska

At practice this morning, Fox, Zibanejad, Kreider, Laf, and Hunt appeared to be the PP1 unit.  Goodrow, Chytil, Kravtsov line were working together on the PP2 uni with Lundkvist at the point and Gauthier at the net front.

The Ranger’s next game will be Tuesday night against the Boston Bruins at MSG.