Rangers Roundup: Development Camp Day 6; and what role will Kevin Rooney play this season

kevin rooney
Apr 25, 2021; New York, New York, USA; Kevin Rooney #17 of the New York Rangers celebrates his empty net goal in the third period against the Buffalo Sabres at Madison Square Garden on April 25, 2021 in New York City.The New York Rangers defeated the Buffalo Sabres 6-3. Mandatory Credit: Elsa/Pool Photo-USA TODAY Sports

The New York Rangers Development Camp reconvenes. Day 6 will consist of a full practice starting at 12:15 PM.

All eyes will be on the top Blueshirts’ prospects including Will Cuylle who has impressed with his scoring so far in scrimmages. The 6-3 power winger has openly stated he wants to make the team this season, but it would likely be best for the 19 year-old to play a full AHL season.


Practice…12:15 PM

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What role will Kevin Rooney play this season

Kevin Rooney proved to be a valuable addition for the Rangers. He was signed along with Colin Blackwell to a two-year deal for the purpose of meeting the qualifications for expansion. It turns out Rooney was better than expected, especially as an excellent penalty killer. He’s also emerged as one of those now desired 4th line “glue” type players. That’s why Chris Drury opted to protect him from a Seattle selection.

Last season, Rooney scored 14 points in 54 games while averaging 12:21 of ice time. The 28 year-old also notched two shorthanded goals and registered 110 hits with 35 blocks.

kevin rooney
Bruce Bennett/POOL PHOTOS-USA TODAY Sports

But what role will he have this season?

Chris Drury brought in Barclay Goodrow, Ryan Reaves, and Sammy Blais this offseason. Goodrow can play center, but the Rangers GM made it clear he sees both Filip Chytil and Morgan Barron as centers.

The third line is likely to have Chytil centering Goodrow to start. There could be a chance that either Alexis Lafrenière or Chris Kreider will play the opposite wing on that line. Although it’s more likely that one of them will switch to right wing to stay in the top six with Vitali Kravtsov likely staying on the third line.

That leaves four players to battle it out for the fourth line. Reaves, Blais, Barron and Rooney.

If Barron makes the team, he will likely be given the 4th line center job. Rooney could play wing and take key draws if Barron struggles or gets kicked out of the dots.

One thing seems certain to me, after the way he played last year and his effectiveness on the PK, he won’t end up the 13th forward.

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Anthony Scultore is the founder of Forever Blueshirts and has been covering the New York Rangers and the NHL... More about Anthony Scultore

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