Rangers Roundup: NHL update, expanded roster spot battles, and more
The NHL is expected to be making an announcement next week with regards to the next phases in its return to play plans. According to Darren Dreger, while the two sides work on the details they are also having discussions on the next CBA. It would be wonderful news if we could have labor peace coming out of all this chaos as well.
The Rangers are going to have to determine whom to include on their expanded playoff roster. David Quinn has plenty of candidates to chose from but no clear cut way to do it. I reached out to the Rangers if the NHL has provided any guidance as to how many people they can invite to “camp” when phase 3 kicks in. According to the team spokesperson they have not received any details on how that will be handled yet.
Some players to include on the roster seem obvious like Steven Fogarty, Vinni Lettieri, Boo Nieves, and Tim Gettinger. However, the Rangers will need to see them in a controlled training camp environment to see where they are fitness wise. Same goes for key battles like Micheal Haley and Matt Beleskey who are essentially the same type of player. Or what about prospects like Vitali Kravtsov and Lias Andersson? You have to assume injuries will happen and each one of these spots is precious.
On defense, where there is a higher probability that injuries set in who will Quinn insert? We can’t simply assume Libor Hajek will make it. Plus how many will they carry? Battles for those spots amongst Brandon Crawley, Yegor Rykov, Darren Raddyish, and Tarmo Reunanen should be intense. However, without the benefit of a camp, it will be impossible and unfair to determine.
When it comes to Libor though, he has an edge. Not because he’s played with the team this season, but how do you say no to a sheep farmer? I jest…or maybe I don’t.