Who Replaces Zuccarello On The NYR Roster

JT Miller (NYDN)

JT Miller (NYDN)

In light of Mats Zuccarello missing the next month with a broken hand, The New York Rangers need to add a forward for the next 7-9 games.  While there is no need for a permanent replacement, the Rangers are most likely looking to replace the void left by Zucc from within the organization.  There are a few candidates down in Hartford that can come up and help, so let’s look at the top three.

THE THREE WOLVES

The odds on favorite to get called up is J.T Miller. After all he is no stranger to being called up and sent down by the New York Rangers. It’s happened 6 times this season. Since most recently being sent down, on January 11th Miller has played 18 games in Hartford. Miller has played on the top line in all of those games.  Getting the top line minutes in Hartford has paid off as he has been a point per game player with 3 goals and 15 assists for 18 points. The biggest difference has been his grit and physical play. Miller leads the team in hits over that 18 game span, and also has had three fights. We all know what Miller can do, the biggest question is when will it click at the NHL level.

Next in line to get the call would have to be Oscar Lindberg. In terms of players who are hot, and have earned a shot to get a chance, no one even comes close to the he’s been playing at.  Last week an entire article was dedicated to Lindberg which you can find here: https://www.foreverblueshirts.com/future-ranger-oscar-lindberg/ .  The one thing that sets Lindberg apart from everyone else is that he is a natural play maker that can get his hands free and make crisp passes. With Zucc going down the rangers lose exactly that. Also, the biggest knock AV has against playing rookies or young players is their lack of responsibility in the defensive zone. That is not an issue for Lindberg, as he not only takes care of his zone, he excels defensively.

The final person to be in line for a call up would be Jesper Fast. Many of us remember him from his cup of coffee with the Rangers in the beginning of the season. Fast played in eight games mostly on the fourth line and in a penalty killer role. While Fast has had an up and down season so far, he finally seems to be balancing out. Playing on the top line along J.T. Miller, Fast’s scoring is up, his minuets are skyrocketing and his level of play is more consistent.  The biggest attributes Fast has going for him is his speed, forechecking ability and a familiarity with AV. All of which fill the void left by Zucc.

For those wondering about Danny Kristo, he was recently injured. More details to follow.

 

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