Jayson Megna recalled and has the “Tipping Point” come for Emerson Etem
This afternoon, the Rangers reconvened for the the first time since their disappointing 3-0 loss on Saturday Night at the hands of the Florida Panthers. The Rangers play the Dallas Stars tomorrow at Madison Square Garden.
One forward missing from practice today was Chris Kreider, who suffered a laceration to his hand on Saturday Night. He is listed as day-to-day. Taking Kreider’s spot on the second line alongside Derek Stepan and Rick Nash was none other than Emerson Etem, who has been the subject of much scrutiny over the last few days for his horrendous game in Florida.
Etem doesn’t belong anywhere near the top-six, and so his position today was just to fill in for Kreider. Kevin Hayes will return to the lineup following a two-game stint in the press box after Alain Vigneault publicly called out the sophomore’s lack of effort. Hayes centered a line with Oscar Lindberg on the left and Jesper Fast on the right.
The more important thing to look at however, is not what took place on the ice, but rather what information surfaced after practice. AV and Jeff Gorton were looking at a call up from Hartford and the Rangers announced one soon after.
— New York Rangers (@NYRangers) January 4, 2016
Talk about a vote of no confidence for Etem. Instead of simply inserting Hayes into Kreider’s spot for Tuesday’s game, the Rangers have basically conceded the fact that the Etem experiment has failed. As to what they can hypothetically do about it, see Anthony’s article from yesterday here.
The debate can go on for days as to whether Etem has a future with the Rangers, but it seems pretty unlikely that he is part of any short-term plan with this team. It’s a real shame because he was the centerpiece of the trade that sent locker-room and fan-favorite Carl Hagelin to Anaheim. Remember that Etem must clear waivers in order to be sent down to Hartford. There’s no way I see the Rangers risking losing him for nothing, as plenty of teams with fancy stats specialists (i.e. Toronto) will salivate over Etem.
Call up, Jayson Megna in 34 games played down in Hartford, has registered 7 goals and 11 assists. It will be interesting to see where Megna fits in the lineup tomorrow night, that being if he suits up at all depending on Greider’s hand.
This could just be an emergency move. We’ll leave the decision making to AV and Jeff Gorton, but the certainty now is that Etem might have reached his “tipping point” with the Rangers organization.
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