Rangers prized prospect Brennan Othmann gets his chance on Broadway

On Wednesday, the New York Rangers announced that forward Brennan Othmann has been recalled from the AHL’s Hartford Wolf Pack. The 2021 first round draft pick will finally get a chance to make his highly anticipated NHL debut after playing well this season in Hartford.

This is due to the news that forward Tyler Pitlick is listed as week-to-week with a lower body injury. With the Rangers in need of some depth scoring after Tuesday night’s 6-1 loss at the hands of the Carolina Hurricanes, Othmann was the best candidate to get the call.

The 20-year-old forward has registered 23 points (9G-14A) in 28 games in the AHL this season. This is good enough to rank Othmann third in points on the Wolf Pack, and ties him for sixth among rookies. His nine goals in the AHL rank him seventh among AHL rookies, and his 14 assists are good enough for eighth.

What’s been really impressive was how the rookie responded to starting slow this season. It’s an insight into how well he’s adapting to the pro game.

“During that cold streak I was playing good hockey but not my best,” Othmann said in early December. “Guys were telling me to stick with it and to shoot the puck… I’m starting to learn the pro style and details.”

Related: Rangers must fix anemic third-line

Brennan Othmann called up by Rangers

Brennan Othmann
Brennan Othmann Rangers Prospect Development Camp at the Rangers Training facility in Tarrytown July 12, 2022. Credit: © Frank Becerra Jr. / The Journal News / USA TODAY NETWORK Rangers Development Camp

Othmann had an impressive training camp for the Rangers and was very noticeable in the preseason. He was very close to making the opening night lineup out of camp, but the Rangers staff and management felt that it was best to let him develop in the AHL.

Othmann is coming off of an incredible campaign in the OHL. He had a very impressive career, registering 197 points in 177 games. To end his junior career, he led the Peterborough Petes to an OHL championship, scoring 25 points in 23 playoff games. He is also a two-time goal medalist (2022 & 2023) at the World Junior Championship with team Canada.

Interestingly enough, the Rangers will play the Chicago Blackhawks and Connor Bedard on Thursday night. Bedard was Othmann’s teammate at the last World Junior Championship as the two won gold together. Seeing as the Rangers are now in need of a forward, Othmann may make his NHL debut against Bedard and the Blackhawks as early as Thursday night.

With New York in need of some offense, it is likely that Othmann will be placed on the third line alongside Nick Bonino and Will Cuylle. With Both Cuylle and Othmann playing the left wing, one of them will need to move over to the right side. This also bumps Jonny Brodzinski down to the fourth line with Barclay Goodrow and Jimmy Vesey. It would not make sense to call up a player like Othmann just to stash him on the fourth line.

Here is an idea of what to expect on Thursday night, should Othmann be inserted into the lineup:

Kreider – Zibanejad – Wheeler
Panarin – Trocheck – Lafreniere
Cuylle – Bonino – Othmann
Vesey – Goodrow – Brodzinski

It will be interesting to see if Peter Laviolette does any line juggling should the Rangers find themselves in a situation where they are struggling to score. Perhaps a line of Kreider-Zibanejad-Othmann will be used if the young forward is playing well enough to earn that look.

The debut of Othmann has been highly anticipated by Rangers’ fans for quite some time. He has impressed at every level he’s played at, and now has the chance to impress at the NHL level. He also has the chance to give the New York Rangers some much needed firepower as they are now missing Filip Chytil, Kaapo Kakko, and Tyler Pitlick due to injury.

It is a great opportunity for the 16th overall draft pick of 2021 to finally show what he is made of.

Dane Walsh is a life-long fan of the New York Rangers. Growing up in the tri-state area, Dane has... More about Dane Walsh