Happy New Year! Revisiting 5 Bold Predictions for this season

Happy New Year Blueshirts fans!

As we ring in 2017, let’s take a quick look back at my 5 Bold Predictions for this season.

In October, I gave you these 5 predictions:

Photo Credit: Getty Images – Jared Silber

Jimmy Vesey will score 50 points and finish second in the Calder Trophy Race

To date, Vesey has 19 points in 38 games. He is scoring at pace of .5 points per game. With 43 games remaining in the Rangers season he will be on pace to finish with 40 to 41 points.

That puts me about 9 points off the mark, but a legit hot steak could still get him there barring no injuries. As for the Calder Trophy race, Vesey ranks 8th in rookie scoring and is way behind both Auston Matthews and Patrick Laine. It’s not even close…I was way wrong on finishing 2nd here.

McDonagh (Robert Mayer-USTI)

Ryan McDonagh will win the Norris Trophy

The Captain of the Rangers is quietly having his best season in NY. He is currently on pace to shatter his career high in points of 44 set in sophomore year of 2011-12. McDonagh has 25 points in 38 games for a points per game pace of .657.

As part of my bold prediction, I said McDonagh would score 10-15 goals and rack up 55 to 60 points. While he likely will not score that many goals, he is on pace to score between 53-54 points for the year.

A quick glance at the Norris Trophy race has SJ’s Brent Burns with 35 points, Tampa’s Victor Hedman with 33, and Ottawa’s Erik Karlsson with 32. However, it isn’t always the leading point getter amongst defensemen that wins.

McDonagh is also tied for 4th in blue liner scoring with 2 others, plus the Rangers are the 3rd best team in the NHL. SJ is ranked 8th with Ottawa at 10th and Tampa at 15th. So this prediction still has a legit shot of coming through, especially if McDonagh can pot a few more PP goals.

Chris Kreider will score 40 or more

The Beast that is known as CK20 netted a hat-trick last night for the Blueshirts. Kreider’s now at 15 goals for the year in 33 games. That is a .45 goals per game pace and as long as he plays the Rangers remaining 43 games he will set a career high in goals.

Unfortunately, it’s going to take a few more hat-tricks for Kreider to break the 40 goal plateau I predicted. He should score between 19-20 more goals if he maintains his current pace which will put him at 34 to 35 goals on the year.

Not bad, but not what I was hoping for. Good news is, like I said before, a hot streak could easily make up that 4-5 goal gap to make 40. That means this prediction still has a shot.

Rick Nash Will Not Be Traded

There is no way the Rangers will trade their best offensive weapon this season. Despite the groin issues, the Blueshirts are contenders for the Cup and moving Nash makes no sense at this point.

If Nash is going to be moved…look to this offseason, not sooner. So I believe this one was an easy spot on prediction.

Girardi (USATSI)

Dan Girardi or Marc Staal Will Be Traded

I honestly thought this was a legit possibility before the season. I figured one of these guys would be willing to waive their clause.

Let me just be honest, there’s no way in hell either one is traded and here’s why. Staal and Holden have actually gelled into a rock solid second pair for the Rangers. This automatically takes Staal out of the mix…aside from his No Move Clause.

As for Girardi…at this point, the only way Girardi won’t wear a Blueshirt is if GM, Jeff Gorton buys him out this summer. Even if a team wanted to take on his contract, does anyone think Girardi would want off a Cup contender? This prediction is a total bust in my book.

Happy and Healthy New Year to you all!

 

Anthony Scultore has been covering the New York Rangers and the NHL since 2014. His work also appears at... More about Anthony Scultore

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