RANGERS: HAYES & KREIDER COLLEGE LINEMATE, GIBBONS SIGNS

rp_new-york-r.gifRANGERS AGREE TO TERMS WITH FREE AGENT FORWARD BRIAN GIBBONS

BY: The New York Rangers

NEW YORK, July 1, 2015 – New York Rangers General Manager Jeff Gorton announced today that the team has agreed to terms with free agent forward Brian Gibbons.

Gibbons, 27, split this past season between the Columbus Blue Jackets and the Springfield Falcons of the American Hockey League (AHL). In 25 games with Columbus, Gibbons recorded five assists, along with a plus-two rating and eight penalty minutes. He tied single-game NHL career-highs with two assists and two points while making his season debut on November 1 at New Jersey. In addition, Gibbons posted a plus/minus rating of even or better in 21 of 25 contests with the Blue Jackets.

In 26 games with Springfield, Gibbons registered three goals and eight assists for 11 points, along with 14 penalty minutes. He posted back-to-back multi-point games on October 25 vs. Norfolk and October 26 vs. Syracuse (one goal, three assists over the span), and he tallied a season-high three points (two goals, one assist), including the game-winning goal, on February 22 vs. Albany.

The 5-8, 170-pounder has skated in 66 career NHL games over parts of two seasons with Pittsburgh and Columbus, registering five goals and 17 assists for 22 points, along with a plus-seven rating and 14 penalty minutes. Gibbons tallied his first career NHL goal, assist, and point as part of a two-point effort while making his NHL debut with the Penguins on November 18, 2013 vs. Anaheim. In addition, he has recorded three points (two goals, one assist), along with a plus-two rating in eight career NHL playoff games. He made his NHL playoff debut in Game 1 of the First Round vs. Columbus on April 16, 2014, and he tallied his first career NHL playoff goal/point as part of a two-goal effort in Game 2 of the First Round vs. Columbus on April 19, 2014.

Gibbons has skated in 194 career AHL games, registering 33 goals and 68 assists for 101 points, along with 117 penalty minutes. He has tallied 14 goals and 27 assists for 41 points in 54 AHL games over the last two seasons, and he participated in the 2014 AHL All-Star Game.

The Braintree, Massachusetts native was originally signed by Pittsburgh as a free agent on April 4, 2011.

RANGERS: STALBERG SIGNED

rp_new-york-r_thumb.gifRANGERS AGREE TO TERMS WITH FREE AGENT FORWARD VIKTOR STALBERG

BY: The New York Rangers

NEW YORK, July 1, 2015 – New York Rangers General Manager Jeff Gorton announced today that the team has agreed to terms with free agent forward Viktor Stalberg.

Stalberg, 29, has played in 338 career NHL games over parts of six seasons with Toronto, Chicago, and Nashville, registering 62 goals and 70 assists for 132 points, along with 182 penalty minutes. He established career-highs in games played (79), goals (22), assists (21), points (43), and game-winning goals (six) during the 2011-12 season with the Blackhawks. In addition, Stalberg has recorded nine points (two goals, seven assists) in 38 career NHL playoff games, and he captured a Stanley Cup as a member of the Blackhawks in 2012-13.

The 6-3, 210-pounder split this past season between Nashville and the Milwaukee Admirals of the American Hockey League (AHL). In 25 games with Nashville, Stalberg registered two goals and eight assists for 10 points, along with 18 penalty minutes. The Predators posted a 6-1-2 record when he recorded a point during the season. Stalberg notched an assist/point in three consecutive games in which he played from March 17 vs. Minnesota to March 26 at Tampa Bay.

In the 2015 Playoffs, Stalberg registered one goal and two assists for three points, along with a plus-one rating in six games. He tied his playoff career-high in points, and tallied a point in three of Nashville’s six playoff games. Stalberg tied for fifth on the Predators in assists and tied for sixth in plus/minus rating in the playoffs.

Stalberg skated in 20 games with Milwaukee this past season, registering 11 goals and six assists for 17 points, along with 14 penalty minutes. He posted three three-point games, including two hat-tricks with the Admirals in 2014-15.

Internationally, the Gothenburg, Sweden native has represented his country in several tournaments. He registered four points (three goals, one assist) in eight games while representing Sweden in the 2012 IIHF World Championship.

Stalberg was originally selected by Toronto in the sixth round, 161st overall, of the 2006 NHL Entry Draft.

FUEHRING: SEVEN PLAYERS GIVEN QUALIFYING OFFERS – PACK FANS WILL RECOGNIZE NAMES

rp_greenville-road-warriors_thumb4.gifROAD WARRIORS SUBMIT QUALIFYING OFFERS

Seven skaters from last season’s roster receive qualifying offers

BY: Alan Fuehring, Greenville Rd Warriors

Greenville, SC – The Greenville Road Warriors, proud ECHL affiliate of the New York Rangers and the AHL’s Hartford Wolf Pack, today announced qualifying offers have been submitted to seven players from the team’s 2014-15 roster.

Tyler Brown (F): Brown, 25, enters his fourth professional campaign after splitting last season between Greenville and Hartford. In 33 games with the Road Warriors, he earned 18 points (12g, 6a) and a +9 rating before earning a call-up to the Wolf Pack on January 6th. The Wasaga Beach, Ontario native spent the rest of season in Hartford and notched 14 points (7g, 7a) in 37 regular-season contests. He has 219 games of AHL experience.

Emerson Clark (F): Clark made 62 appearances with the Road Warriors last season and posted 25 points (16g, 9a). The Whitby, Ontario native led the club in penalty minutes for the second consecutive season with 217. The 22-year old will enter his third professional campaign.

Kyle Jean (F): Jean, 25, skated in 50 contests for the Warriors during the 2014-15 season and registered 38 points (15g, 23a). The Sault Ste. Marie, Michigan native also played in 12 AHL games between the Charlotte Checkers and Lake Erie Monsters. Jean served as an alternate captain for the Road Warriors and finished the season tied for the team-lead with six power-play goals.

Anthony Luciani (F): Luciani, 25, joined the Road Warriors on March 10, 2015 in a deal with the Gwinnett Gladiators just prior to the trade deadline. He immediately provided an offensive spark and finished the season with 28 goals, 69 points and a +18 rating – all team bests. The Maple, Ontario native added 41 assists in 65 games, split between Greenville and the Toledo Walleye.

Chad Nehring (F): A fifth-year pro, Nehring began the 2014-15 campaign in Greenville and notched 12 points (5g, 7a) in the first 17 games, which helped earn his first-ever call-up to the AHL (Hartford) on November 29th. The 28-year old remained in Hartford for the rest of the season and produced 12 points (4g, 8a) in 53 games. He also made 15 post-season appearances and helped the Wolf Pack to the AHL’s Western Conference Finals.

Trevor Parkes (F): Parkes, 24, joined the Road Warriors last season after a three-year tenure in the Detroit Red Wings organization. He registered 33 points (15g, 18a) and a +9 rating in 39 games with Greenville before earning a promotion to the Worcester Sharks (AHL) on February 3rd. The Fort Erie, Ontario native spent the rest of the season in Worcester and notched nine points (3g, 6a) in 20 contests. He has 136 games of AHL experience.

Sean Escobedo (D): Escobedo, 24, led all Warriors defensemen with a +8 rating last season. He added 19 points (3g, 16a) in 61 games and also saw action in four AHL contests between Hartford and the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins.

Each team is entitled to reserve the rights to a maximum of eight qualified players. Of those eight, no more than four could be veterans (260 regular-season pro games played). Players on open qualifying offers cannot be traded.

The qualifying offer must remain open for acceptance until Aug. 1st at which time the qualifying offer becomes null and void and the team may sign the qualified player to any salary or may elect to take no further action. Teams that extend a valid qualifying offer to a non-veteran player shall retain the rights to that qualified player for one playing season.

Follow: Keep up with the Road Warriors throughout the off-season and interact with other fans on the Official Road Warriors FacebookTwitterPinterest and Instagram pages.

Ticket plans for the Road Warriors’ sixth season in the Upstate are available now and start as low as $81! Call an Account Executive today at 864-674-PUCK or CLICK HERE to secure your seats! The Road Warriors open their home portion of the 2015-16 season on Friday, October 23rd with a 7:00 p.m. puck drop against the South Carolina Stingrays.

RANGERS: LINDBLAD SIGNING

rp_new-york-r.gifRANGERS AGREE TO TERMS WITH FREE AGENT FORWARD MATT LINDBLAD

BY: The New York Rangers

NEW YORK, July 1, 2015 – New York Rangers President and General Manager Glen Sather announced today that the team has agreed to terms with free agent forward Matt Lindblad.

Lindblad, 25, skated in 47 games with the Providence Bruins of the American Hockey League (AHL) this past season, registering nine goals and 13 assists for 22 points, along with a plus-five rating and six penalty minutes. He established AHL career-highs in goals and plus/minus rating in 2014-15. He posted an AHL career-high four-game point streak from October 19 vs. Portland to November 1 at Springfield (one goal, three assists) and he tied a single-game AHL career-high with three points (one goal, two assists) on Jan. 18 vs. Wilkes-Barre/Scranton. Lindblad also skated in three playoff games with Providence. In addition, he skated in two NHL games with Boston in 2014-15, recording three shots on goal.

The 5-11, 193-pounder has skated in 106 career AHL games over parts of three seasons, registering 18 goals and 33 assists for 51 points, along with a plus-four rating and 14 penalty minutes. Lindblad has also skated in 15 career AHL playoff games, recording three goals and four assists for seven points, along with a plus-four rating. In addition, he has skated in four career NHL games over parts of two seasons, all with Boston.

Prior to joining the professional ranks, Lindblad played three seasons of collegiate hockey at Dartmouth University. In 89 career collegiate games, Lindblad registered 29 goals and 51 assists for 80 points, along with a plus-24 rating and eight penalty minutes. Lindblad, who was named to the All-Ivy League Second Team during his junior season in 2012-13, posted at least 15 assists, 24 points, and a plus-five rating in each of his three collegiate seasons, and he tallied 10 or more goals in two of three seasons with Dartmouth.

The Evanston, Illinois native originally signed with Boston as a free agent on April 5, 2013.

RANGERS: MEGNA SIGNING

rp_new-york-r_thumb.gifRANGERS AGREE TO TERMS WITH FREE AGENT FORWARD JAYSON MEGNA

BY: The New York Rangers

NEW YORK, July 1, 2015 – New York Rangers President and General Manager Glen Sather announced today that the team has agreed to terms with free agent forward Jayson Megna.

Megna, 25, split this past season between the Pittsburgh Penguins and the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins of the American Hockey League (AHL). He tallied one assist and recorded 14 penalty minutes in 12 games with Pittsburgh. Megna registered 40 hits and was credited with eight blocked shots in 12 contests with the Penguins, and he notched an assist on the game-winning goal on December 2 vs. New Jersey.

In 63 games with Wilkes-Barre/Scranton this past season, the 6-1, 195-pounder registered 26 goals and 13 assists for 39 points, along with a plus-18 rating and 40 penalty minutes. Megna established AHL career-highs in games played, goals, assists, points, plus/minus rating, power play goals (five), and shots on goal (134). He led the team in goals, tied for third on the team in power play goals and ranked fifth in points and plus/minus rating. Megna also tallied five points (one goal, four assists) in eight playoff games with Wilkes-Barre/Scranton. He ranked third on the team in assists and tied for third on the team in points in the playoffs.

Megna has skated in 48 career NHL games over parts of two seasons, both with Pittsburgh, registering five goals and five assists for 10 points, along with 20 penalty minutes. He made his NHL debut on October 25, 2013 vs. the NY Islanders, and recorded his first career NHL goal, assist, and point in his second career NHL game on October 28, 2013 at Carolina. In addition, Megna has skated in two career NHL playoff games, and he made his NHL playoff debut in Game 3 of the First Round at Columbus on April 21, 2014.

In 144 career AHL games, Megna has registered 40 goals and 26 assists for 66 points, along with a plus-19 rating and 72 penalty minutes. Over the last two seasons, he has tallied 54 points (35 goals, 19 assists) and has posted a plus-31 rating in 88 AHL games. Megna has also skated in 33 career AHL playoff games, registering four goals and nine assists for 13 points, along with six penalty minutes.

Prior to joining the professional ranks, Megna played one season of collegiate hockey with the University of Nebraska-Omaha. During his freshman season in 2011-12, Megna registered 13 goals and 18 assists for 31 points, along with a plus-13 rating and 27 penalty minutes. Megna was named to the WCHA All-Rookie Team, as he led Nebraska-Omaha in plus/minus rating and ranked third on the team in goals, assists, and points.

The Fort Lauderdale, Florida native is one of seven players in NHL history who were born in Florida.

Megna was originally signed by Pittsburgh as a free agent on August 1, 2012.

RANGERS: HISTORIC DAY AS SATHER ERA ENDS, GORTON ERA BEGINS

rp_new-york-r.gifRANGERS ANNOUNCE HOCKEY CLUB

PERSONNEL PROMOTIONS

Jeff Gorton named 11th General Manager in franchise history;

Jim Schoenfeld named Senior Vice President and Assistant General Manager and General Manager of the Hartford Wolf Pack;

Glen Sather continues as team President

BY: The New York Rangers

NEW YORK, July 1, 2015 – New York Rangers President Glen Sather announced today that Jeff Gorton has been named the 11th General Manager in franchise history and Jim Schoenfeld has been named Senior Vice President and Assistant General Manager and General Manager of the Hartford Wolf Pack. Sather will retain his role as President, a position which he has held since June 1, 2000.

“Jeff has been an integral part of our success since joining the Rangers, and he has earned the respect of colleagues throughout the hockey community,” Sather said. “He is well prepared for and extremely deserving of this opportunity.

“Jim has played a pivotal role in several areas during his tenure with the Rangers,” Sather said. “He is a valuable member of our staff and he will continue to benefit the organization at both the NHL and AHL levels.”

Gorton, 46, has been a member of the Rangers organization for the past eight seasons and served as the team’s Assistant General Manager over the last four seasons. He joined the Rangers in 2007 as a professional scout, and served three seasons as Assistant Director, Player Personnel before becoming the team’s Assistant General Manager.

During Gorton’s tenure with the Rangers, he has played a key role in the selection of current Blueshirts Derek Stepan, Chris Kreider, Jesper Fast, and J.T. Miller in the NHL Entry Draft. Gorton was vital in the Rangers’ acquisitions of Ryan McDonagh, Rick Nash, Derick Brassard, and Keith Yandle through trades, as well as the signing of free agents Kevin Hayes and Mats Zuccarello.

Prior to joining the Rangers, Gorton spent 15 seasons with the Boston Bruins organization, serving as the Bruins Assistant General Manager during the final seven years of his tenure. As Assistant General Manager, he was involved in contract negotiations, scouting operations and the team’s American Hockey League (AHL) affiliate in Providence.

Gorton served as Boston’s Interim General Manager from March 27 to July 8, 2006, directing the Bruins’ efforts at the 2006 NHL Entry Draft and negotiating contracts and trades at the start of the 2006 free agency period. At the 2006 NHL Entry Draft, Gorton was instrumental in landing Bruins’ star players Brad Marchand and Tuukka Rask, as well as former Bruins’ stars Phil Kessel and Milan Lucic. He also acquired All-Star free agents Zdeno Chara and Marc Savard.

Gorton originally joined the Bruins organization in their public relations department at the beginning of the 1992-93 season. He became the Bruins’ Director of Scouting Information in October 1994, where he created the scouting database which networks the club’s scouts via computer, and coordinated video on prospects in preparation of scouting assignments and the annual NHL Entry Draft. Gorton holds a degree in physical education from Bridgewater State College, and a Masters in sports management from Springfield College.

Schoenfeld, 62, served the past eight seasons as Assistant General Manager, Player Personnel of the Rangers. In that capacity, he played a vital role in all player transactions, and was also responsible for all hockey-related matters for the Wolf Pack.

Schoenfeld has served as General Manager of the Wolf Pack/Whale for the past 12 seasons and served as head coach of the team for two seasons in 2005-06 and 2006-07. He assumed head coaching duties for the organization on July 13, 2005, when he became the fourth head coach in franchise history. Schoenfeld has been influential in developing the organization’s pool of prospects.

During Schoenfeld’s tenure in the organization, several Blueshirts developed under his guidance in Hartford before becoming key contributors in New York. In his two seasons as head coach of the Wolf Pack, Schoenfeld played a vital role in the progression of Dan Girardi, Ryan Callahan, and Brandon Dubinsky. Since Schoenfeld became the Wolf Pack General Manager, players such as McDonagh, Zuccarello, Miller, Fast, and Artem Anisimov made their professional debuts with the Wolf Pack/Whale in the AHL before being called up by the Rangers.

In 2014-15, the Rangers and Wolf Pack were the only NHL and AHL affiliates from the same organization to both reach the Conference Finals. It was the first time in franchise history that the Rangers and their AHL affiliate both reached the Eastern Conference Final in the same season.

Over his 12 seasons as General Manager of the Wolf Pack/Whale, the team has posted a 512-325-52-55 record in 944 games (.599 point percentage). Schoenfeld also registered a 95-53-5-7 record in 160 games during his two seasons as the head coach of the Wolf Pack (.631 point percentage). Since Schoenfeld became Hartford’s general manager, the club has reached the playoffs in nine of 12 seasons.

In addition to his front office roles with the Rangers, Schoenfeld also served as an assistant coach with the Blueshirts during the 2002-03 season. Schoenfeld compiled a 256-246-78 record (.509 point percentage) over 10 seasons as an NHL head coach with the Buffalo Sabres, New Jersey Devils, Washington Capitals, and Phoenix Coyotes, and he reached the playoffs in six of the 10 campaigns.

Schoenfeld skated in 719 career NHL games with the Sabres, Detroit Red Wings and Boston Bruins from 1972-73 through 1984-85. A former captain of the Sabres, he registered 51 goals and 204 assists for 255 points, along with 1,132 penalty minutes in his NHL career. Originally selected by Buffalo in the first round, fifth overall, of the 1972 NHL Amateur Draft, Schoenfeld is a member of the Buffalo Sports Hall of Fame and the Buffalo Sabres Hall of Fame.

CANTLON’S CORNER: THE WEEK IN RANGERS/WOLF-PACK NEWS

gerry-150x130BY: Gerry Cantlon, Howlings

HARTFORD, CT – The NHL Entry Draft produced a few surprises and there were some interesting trades some of which involved ex-Hartford Wolf Pack/CT Whale players.

The New York Rangers traded their speedy former CT Whale Carl Hagelin to the Anaheim Ducks for forward Emerson Etem. While they got some size (6’1 212) in Etem, to this point in his young career, at best, he’s been an in-between player. To this point, in Anaheim, Etem’s played 45 games and put up 5g-5a-10pts. With the Ducks’ AHL affiliate, the Norfolk Admirals, Etem potted 13 goals, had 8 assists for 21 points in 22 games. Etem was a first round pick, 29th overall by Anaheim in 2010. Etem played his years in junior at Medicine Hat (WHL).

Hagelin’s pending free agency next season, and with the Rangers already being so close to the NHL salary cap, and with so many other free agents to sign, it’s clear that was a decisive factor in the trade which the Ducks clearly got the better end of.

Etem’s one connection with Hartford comes when he contracted the mumps three days after Norfolk played Hartford in November. That appearance eventually sidelined Joey Crabb and even head coach Ken Gernander when the two had issues with it as well.

Then, as expected, ex-Pack/CT Whale goalie Cam Talbot was sent dealt to the Edmonton Oilers for three draft picks on Saturday. The Rangers received the 57th, 79th and 184th from the Oilers. With a very cap friendly cap contract and like Hagelin, Talbot was heading for UFA status next year and his contract per CBA rules couldn’t even be extended until January, so it was the best move for all concerned.

Talbot played at the University Alabama-Huntsville, went undrafted and then rose from obscurity. Talbot became a fixture in Hartford when he surpassed Chad Johnson as te team’s number one netminder. It’s hard to forget that memorable moment when Talbot received Jim Schoenfeld’s approval with a big slap on the back prior to the playoffs in 2011 and then delivered sweeping the Bridgeport Sound Tigers and then made a strong effort against the eventual Calder Cup champs that year Norfolk in a six game series.

This season with Henrik Lundqvist injury he stepped in over a two month period playing every game, but two in leading the Rangers to the Presidents Trophy with the best NHL regular season record, but didn’t start one game in the postseason.

The last Rangers deal affected Hartford directly. The Blueshirts went out and got a new backup for Henrik Lundqvist in Antii Raanta, who split last season with the Stanley Cup Champion Blackhawks (14 GP 7-4-1 1.89 GAA) and AHL Rockford (11 GP 8-1-1 2.39 GAA) and was listed as the team’s third goalie.

The Rangers traded winger Ryan Haggerty, a Stamford, CT native, who just turned 22 after just one pro season after being signed out of RPI last spring. Haggerty had 15 goals and 32 points in 76 games with the Wolf Pack.

Haggerty started off OK, had a soft middle of the season, and after a chat with Gernander on producing more A and B games rather than C games, Haggerty picked up his skating pace and got some scoring. Then, like several other players, he hit a major scoring slump at the end of the season and went into the playoffs. Haggerty went through 12 games without a goal before getting off the schneid with a goal in Game 4 of the Hershey series.

NEXT UP

NHL-AHL free agency starts Wednesday and the Rangers have many roster decisions to make that will be announced.

One that Howlings can announce exclusively is that center Chad Nehring has been re-signed to a one-year AHL deal. The recently turned 28-year-old was a pivotal fourth line center who filled in on occasion on the first and second unit in part due to his strong faceoff skills. Nehring, who bounced around the ECHL for four years, along with Shawn O’Donnell, was a pesky thorn in the side of the Wolf Pack’s foes.

According to sources, Nehring was sought after by several other teams for an AHL deal, most noticeably the Hershey Bears, whom he burned with one of the best individual plays in the postseason in Game 5 in which he set up Chris Mueller’s game-winning OT goal. Nehring made a spectacular individual effort spanning from his own end of the ice to behind the Hershey net.

O’Donnell, who just turned 27 at the end of the playoffs, should re-sign with the Pack, but he could get an AHL deal elsewhere.

Several players have contracts that are up. Dylan McIlrath 22, coming to the end of his NHL three year entry level deal is expected to be qualified and may sign a new deal with the Rangers. It would be a wise move he was an important player in his third year with the Wolf Pack. Dylan McIlrath, 22, came to the end of his NHL three year entry level deal and according to several of the Rangers beat writers was among eight of the nine players offered qualifying offers.

Converted center Marek Hrivik becomes an RFA (restricted free agency) and at the end of the year said he wanted to return. Hrivik is one of the in between guys and performed well even while having several long scoring droughts and should earn a new Wolf Pack deal.

Danny Kristo, who was an RFA a year ago based on his old contract with Montreal, but signed to a one year deal last summer, will be a UFA (unrestricted free agent) because he just turned 25 two weeks ago was a second round pick and has played no NHL games by age 25.

He could be re-signed because the Rangers’ Russian prospect, forward Pavel Buchnevich, 20, has indicated he intends stay in Russia to play with Severstal Cherepovets in the KHL next season. He had a good Russian junior playoff with the Almaz Cherepovets (MHL) posting 20 points in 11 games.

Kristo may well sign with the Philadelphia Flyers where his old North Dakota coach, Dave Hakstol, is the Flyers new head coach.

Defenseman Mat Bodie, 25, signed a one year deal after winning the NCAA title with Union College (ECACHL) and played with a heart of lion, but he is the same boat as Kristo except was undrafted by age 25 and has no NHL games. Clearly, Bodie needs to gain upper body strength to keep playing at the AHL level. He was exploited several times in both the Hershey and Manchester series against those team’s bigger forwards.

There are several veterans the team will re-sign with several likely to find employment elsewhere in the AHL or Europe.

Ryan Potulny 30, to nobody’s surprise has already signed with Lahti (Finland-FEL) and very surprisingly RW Carl Klingberg 24, acquired from Winnipeg opted to return to Europe and signed with Torpedo Novgorod (Russia-KHL).

Goalie Yann Danis could be re-signed because of the injury and subsequent postseason surgery to the right hip of Mackenzie Skapski that will sideline him until at least October. Cederic Desjardins, who has one more year on his deal, is coming off ACL surgery on his right knee. That will be a factor. Danis, being 33, could head to Europe to wind up his career. Only time will tell.

Crabb, at age 32 and from Anchorage, AK, will likely either wind up on the AHL Pacific Division or Europe. Mike Kostka, 29 is likely to be in the same position.

The Bourque brothers remain a question marks because of the Rangers cap and contract status. Chris, 29, who will be entering his 12th pro season, commands a healthy six-figure deal while Ryan, 24, has played all four pro years in Hartford, shown great leadership and work ethics could become a fourth line NHL energy guy. Both will likely be re-signed by the Rangers.

Nick Tarnasky 30, could head back to Europe or maybe the Quebec LNAH league as the speed of the game has passed him by.

RANGER DRAFTEES

All of them are 18 years old (except one) and are a year or two from making the Wolf Pack roster.

Ryan Gropp, a 6’2 185 lb. LW was the 41st selection 2nd round had a good season with Seattle (WHL) 67-30-28-58-44

Robin Kovacs, of Skelleftea AIK (Sweden-Allsvenskan) a LW/RW was the first of the Oiler picks for Talbot 62nd overall 3rd round 52-17-11-28-63. Considered a major agitator, the last Swedish agitator was named Andreas Jamtin. He lasted all of five games in Hartford.

Kovacs was named to the Swedish National U-20 team on Monday that will play in Lake Placid in August in a tournament and could be eligible for their World Junior Championship team in December/January.

Sergei Zborovsky, a defenseman at 6’3, 200 lbs. is the tallest player selected from Regina (WHL) and was coached by ex-Wolf Pack head coach John Paddock 71-3-16-19-70.

Aleksi Saarela, C/LW 5’10 195 lbs the smallest player they drafted from Assat Pori (Finland-FEL) 89TH overall 3rd round  51-6-6-12-18.

Brad Morrison, C 113th overall 4th round Prince George (WHL) 67-23-26-49-30

Daniel Bernhardt, is the oldest at 19 a LW/RW was 119th overall 4th round (Djurgarden J-20) 44-26-35-61-22

Adam Huska, G 184th overall 7th round Team Slovakia U-18 team 25 GP and a 3.60 GAA and Green Bay (USHL) 5 GP 0-3-1 4.65 GAA. Huska played five games for Slovakia at the World Junior Championships with a 3.01 GAA.

The Rangers have no first round selection next year (to Arizona in the Keith Yandle trade) none the previous two years. The last was Brady Skjei (Shay) 2012 who was signed out the University of Minnesota and played with the Wolf Pack at the end of the season and in the playoffs.

DRAFTEES OF NOTE

Luke Stevens, a Yale University (ECACHL) commit 2016-17 son of ex-Ranger Kevin playing at a Noble & Greenough Prep school in Massachusetts was taken by Carolina 126th overall in the 5th round.

Adam Musil, nephew of former Whaler and Ranger Bobby Holik was selected by St. Louis 4th round 95th overall from Red Deer (WHL). His older brother David split this season with Bakersfield (ECHL) and Oklahoma City (AHL). Father Frantiske (Frank) is a former NHL player who is an amateur scout with Edmonton.

Callum Booth, former Salisbury Prep goalie was taken by Carolina 4th round 93rd overall from Quebec (QMJHL).

The highest drafted son of a ex-Wolf Pack player now belongs to Jake DeBrusk the left winger from Swift Current (WHL) by Boston 14th overall, Jake is the son of ex-Pack and Ranger Louie DeBrusk now a TV color commentator on Edmonton Oiler broadcasts.

Chris Wilkie, son of ex-Pack David Wilkie was taken by Florida 6th round 162nd overall from Tri-City (USHL). He is a University North Dakota Fighting Sioux (NCHC) commit for next year.

The other highest draftee son of ex-Wolf Pack (and ex-Sound Tiger) was also by Boston last year taking Ryan Donato son of Ted in the 2nd round 56th overall.

The Islanders drafted the first Chinese born player in Andong Song (72nd overall 6th round) a defenseman and forward.

Song was born in Beijing his parents moved to Canada and played bantam hockey in the GTA (greater Toronto area). He played prep school hockey in South Jersey at the prestigious Lawrenceville school the last three years. Song  played and was captain on the Chinese U-18 team at the IIHF Division 2B level.

He will do a PG year at Phillips Andover Prep in Massachusetts this year before playing either junior hockey or collegiate hockey next year.

The first part of his first name is An which means peace in Chinese and dong means born in the East. Chinese first names are hybrids in part because of the different dialects such as Mandarin and Cantonese reflecting the many changes in Chinese history.

Last year the first Australian was taken in Nathan Walker by Washington.

PLAYER MOVEMENTS

Former Sound Tiger rookie defenseman Griffin Reinhart who played 59 games last year going 7-15-22 and had 64 PM and a minus 13 is a former #1 and 4th overall pick was traded to Edmonton for the 1st and 2nd round picks of Edmonton Saturday.

Sound Tiger head coach Brent Thompson was high on his development over the year, but I still think he needs seasoning should start next year in Bakersfield (AHL).

Former Wolf Pack goalie Chris Holt who split last season between Italy (SV Ritten/Renon) and the Czech Republic (HC Orli Znojmo) has a new hockey home next season with the Braehead Clan just outside of Glasgow, Scotland in the England based Elite Ice Hockey League (EIHL).

Ryan Glenn, former Wolf Pack defenseman goes from Karpat Oulu (Finland-FEL) to HC Sparta Prague (Czech Republic-CEL).

Nigel Dawes has re-signed with Barys Astana (Kazakhstan-KHL) wonder if they threw in some Burger King coupons !!?

Marcello Ranallo, a UCONN (AHA) hockey grad re-signed with SG Cortina (Italy LIHG A-League).

Dallas Eakins who played for the Beast of New Haven was named the head coach for the maiden season of the AHL San Diego Gulls top affiliate for the Anaheim Ducks.

Former Beast of New Haven forward David Nemirovsky who has dual citizenship (Canada-Russia) has formally retired and will be the Sport Director for HC Vladivostok Admirals (Russia-KHL). The tri-lingual Nemirovsky will handle negotiations with North American and European based players for the team.

Three former Springfield Falcons have signed deals with their new Columbus affiliate in Lake Erie (nee Cleveland) in AHL vet Ryan Craig, forward Troy Vogelhuber and rookie Seth Ambroz out of the University of Minnesota. They also signed Russian Oleg Yevenko all 6’7 230 lbs. of him who played at UMASS-Amhersrt (HE) last year and four games with Adirondack.

Old pal PA Parenteau has been brought by Montreal and will make a cool $2.7 million the next two years concluding his $12 million dollar deal he signed originally with Colorado. PA may get picked up by another NHL team, but at 32 wouldn’t be surprised he heads to Europe.

Better yet Mike Richards who played a part of the year in Manchester will be getting a check for about $1.4 million per year from the LA Kings till 2024-25. No typo you read that right.

Ex-Pack/CT Whale Tim Erixon signed an extension with the Toronto Maple Leafs.

Sam Gagner, son of former Nighthawk Dave Gagner the Director of Player Personnel in Vancouver was traded from Arizona to Philadelphia for Niklas Grossman and Chris Pronger. Yes, the retired former Whaler Chris Pronger had his contract transferred to the Coyotes so they could get their NHL payroll UP TO the NHL spending floor !!

He retired for concussion related reasons and will now also be paid by the NHL (in its Discipline department) and the Coyotes. Only in the NHL !

STRANGE BUT TRUE

The latest addition to the hockey playing community is—the Falkand Islands !!

No joke the tip comes from writer Steven Ellis of Hockey House.net whose story also appears courtesy of Eurohockey.com;

Here is the official website;

No truth to the rumor the Arizona Coyotes are looking to relocate there or the NHL is accepting an expansion bid.