New York Rangers announce Zac Jones sent to Wolf Pack; Nils Lundkvist wins 6th spot

Zac Jones was always going to have a hard time making the New York Rangers this season. With the top four d-spots locked up and the signing of Patrik Nemeth, he needed to not only have an impressive camp, but for highly touted prospect Nils Lundkvist to have a poor one.

The good news for the organization is that both young players were excellent and at times during exhibition the best d-men out there. The bad news for Jones is that he will start the season in Hartford of the AHL.

New York Rangers send Zac Jones down to Wolf Pack

The New York Rangers announced today in a press release that they have assigned defenseman Zac Jones to the Hartford Wolf Pack of the American Hockey League (AHL). In two preseason games, Jones registered an assist, six shots and a total of 41:07 minutes of ice time.

Here is a look at the 25 players remaining in Camp:

Forwards (15): Morgan Barron, Sammy Blais, Filip Chytil, Julien Gauthier, Barclay Goodrow, Dryden Hunt, Kaapo Kakko, Vitali Kravtsov, Chris Kreider, Alexis Lafreniere, Artemi Panarin, Ryan Reaves, Kevin Rooney, Ryan Strome, Mika Zibanejad

Defensemen (8): Adam Fox, Libor Hajek, Ryan Lindgren, Nils Lundkvist, K’Andre Miller, Patrik Nemeth, Jarred Tinordi, Jacob Trouba

Goaltenders (2): Alexandar Georgiev, Igor Shesterkin

Nils Lundkvist wins roster spot

Nils Lundkvist Rangers
Sep 26, 2021; New York, New York, USA; New York Islanders right wing Leo Komarov (47) and New York Rangers defenseman Nils Lundkvist (64) battle for position during the first period a preseason game at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Andy Marlin-USA TODAY Sports

Although not yet official, Nils Lundkvist has won the final spot on defense to start the season. He will be paired with Nemeth as the third unit, and he should also man the point for PP2.

Lundkvist, 21, has come over and played as advertised. Especially working as the quarterback on the Rangers second power play unit. It took him some time to acclimate to the smaller ice surface, but has done so quickly.

“It’s been an adjustment,” Nils said after his first exhibition game. “You need to play more at the central of the ice. Back home (in Sweden) when you’re in the dots you have a lot of space. When you’re out there, you’re close to the boards – so it will be an adjustment. It’s getting better and better.”

For the 20 year-old Jones, he shouldn’t take this as a negative. Not making the Rangers to start the season isn’t a setback, he is likely already penned in as the first call-up.

“If I get sent down, I’m not going to complain about it, I’m not going to be mad,” Jones said earlier in the week. “I’m going to go down there and work as hard as I can to get myself back up to the NHL.”

I have a feeling Jones will be in the NHL sooner than later.

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