Phil Posted March 5, 2019 Share Posted March 5, 2019 Having stripped down their club for parts and futures at the trade deadline just over a week ago, the New York Rangers have entered a skeletal state for the second straight year. Only this time, much of what?s left isn?t flotsam from the wreck, but pieces much more likely to define the success of this rebuild over the coming seasons. It?s no coincidence, either, that despite their winless record since the deadline in which the team has gone 0-1-2 over their last three games, and 0-1-3 just prior to it, the quality of their games played has been markedly improved. It?s almost like many of these youngsters are playing like they?ve got something to lose ? like the roster spots they?ve suddenly found themselves in possession of. Brendan Lemieux, acquired in the Hayes trade to the Winnipeg Jets, has been a physical presence in each game he?s dressed for, including a particularly memorable Rangers? debut filled with piss and vinegar. If you?re failing to find an unfinished check or scrum he?s passed up an opportunity to enter since he?s come to New York, it?s because there hasn?t been one. Meanwhile, on the blue line, DeAngelo has arguably found the biggest role among this growing core of young building blocks. Not only is he running point on the club?s first power-play unit ? ranked 15th in the league ? but he was the most productive defender on the team through the month of February. His 11 points ? all assists ? topped next-best Kevin Shattenkirk?s seven points (also all apples) in one fewer game (12). He has a point in nine of the team?s last 10 contests. DeAngelo, who established a single-game career-high in ice time (26:32) in the 4-3 overtime loss to the Lightning on February 27, has also been a physical presence in most of his games both prior to and following the deadline. This is of particular interest given he?s seemingly no longer playing under much threat of being made a healthy scratch due to the Rangers? insistence on carrying eight NHL defenders this entire season, or the perception of ?maturity issues? cited in early February that he seems to have bounced back from in a big way. https://www.blueshirtbanter.com/2019/3/5/18251126/the-kids-have-fight-skeleton-squad-rangers-making-most-of-remainder-of-season Sent from my iPhone using Blueshirts Brotherhood mobile app powered by Tapatalk Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...
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