Rangers shake up the kids, send Nils Lundkvist down and call up Braden Schneider

The New York Rangers announced on Tuesday that the team has recalled defenseman Braden Schneider from the Hartford Wolf Pack and promoted him to the active roster.

Additionally, the team announced that rookie defenseman Nils Lundkvist, Tarmo Reunanen, and goalie Tyler Wall were assigned to the Wolf Pack.

Braden Schneider gets his chance

Schneider, 20, has picked up nine points (all assists) in 24 games with the Pack this season. The 6-2, 202 lbs defenseman is a physical presence on the blue-line that likes to hit hard and often.

The Saskatchewan native was drafted by the Rangers in the first round of the 2020 NHL Draft. New York moved up to select him 19th overall by exchanging their first round pick (22nd overall) and a third round selection with Calgary.

“I just want to show that I can play at the highest level,” Schneider said during camp. “I want to show what I got and show that I can play with the big boys.”

It will be interesting to see how quickly Schneider will be inserted into the lineup and who he will partner with. The right-handed shot has played both sides down in Hartford but is most comfortable on the right side.

He could partner up with Patrik Nemeth or Zac Jones (taxi squad) on the left.

Per Rangers Press Release: Schneider played parts of five seasons for the Brandon Wheat Kings of the Western Hockey League (WHL), where he served as captain in 2020-21 and assistant captain from 2018-19 – 2019-20. Schneider registered 21 goals and 94 assists for 115 points in 207 career games with Brandon and had a plus-50 rating. In 2020-21, he was awarded the Bill Hunter Trophy, given to the WHL’s top defenseman.

Nils Lundkvist will get ice time

nils lundkvist
Oct 14, 2021; New York, New York, USA; New York Rangers defenseman Nils Lundkvist (27) shoots the puck against the Dallas Stars during the first period at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports

The Rangers wisely sent down rookie defenseman Nils Lundkvist, as he will now get top d-pair minutes in Hartford and quarterback the PP.

Lundkvist, 21, has four points (1G, 3A) in 25 games with a +4 rating. He has been in and out of the lineup sporadically despite having played in two of the Rangers best defensive performances recently. A 4-0 win over the Tampa Bay Lightning at MSG on 1/2 and a 4-1 lights out clinic against the Ducks on 1/8 in Anaheim.

In contrast, Nemeth is a -9 with 2 assists in 33 games and Tinordi is a -5 with 1 goal in 7 contests.

The underlying numbers are even more in Lundkvist’s favor with a CF% of 42.19 compared to Nemeth’s 39.15 and Tinordi’s 37.12. Furthermore, Lundkvist’s GF% (Goals For vs Goals Against) is 59.09 to Nemeth’s 35.48 and Tinordi’s 14.29.

It is unclear exactly what was lacking in his game that Gerard Gallant and Chris Drury did not see to make him a regular. Lundkvist’s only drawback is being on the smaller and less physical side. However, his skating, passing, and shot are superior to either his usual partner Nemeth or his replacement Jarred Tinordi.

-Advanced stats via NaturalStatTrick

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