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Alexis Lafreniere and the Rangers Reach a Critical Point


Pete
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“He doesn’t seem to accomplish much out there with or without the puck,” said one NHL scout whose coverage area includes the Rangers. “When you watch him play it’s hard to find him out there, has little impact on the outcome. I don’t know if it’s lack of confidence but his processing seems a little bit of a step behind.”

 

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“When you watch (Ottawa) play, you notice him” said one of the executives said of Stützle. “Can’t say the same about (Lafrenière).” Stützle has 29 points in 30 games this season for the Senators while leading all Ottawa forwards in ice time at 20:09 per game. He plays in all situations. Lafrenière has 17 points in 36 games while playing 15:01 a game and getting scraps of power play time.

 

 

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And worse for Drury: Talent evaluators around the league can see the problem, too. Lafrenière had every right to expect more opportunity when he came in as a heralded top pick and also every right to feel disillusioned that those opportunities haven’t presented themselves through two-plus years. But the expectations go both ways: The Rangers surely expected a hungry player who wouldn’t be content with third-line minutes and would do more to earn a bigger slice of the action.

 

“He has to decide what type of player he is going to be,” the pro scout said. “If it’s going to be a guy that is strong down low and take pucks to the net then that’s what he has to do consistently. I don’t feel like he has an identity right now. I think we saw a bit of it during the playoffs but then he got away from it.”

https://theathletic.com/4042117/2022/12/29/alexis-lafreniere-rangers-fourth-line-healthy-scratch?source=user-shared-article

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Nothing we haven't seen and noticed already, just now being confirmed in print. 

 

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7 minutes ago, Pete said:

“He doesn’t seem to accomplish much out there with or without the puck,” said one NHL scout whose coverage area includes the Rangers. “When you watch him play it’s hard to find him out there, has little impact on the outcome. I don’t know if it’s lack of confidence but his processing seems a little bit of a step behind.”

This sums him up perfectly. You just never notice him, unless he's scoring on an empty net or gasping for air after a back-check.

 

It's the complete opposite with Kakko (and Chytil). It's not always positive impact, but they're atleast impacting the game consistently. Lafreniere is just there. That's why I'll give up on Lafreniere before Kakko, even if he's a year younger. You can see there's something there, that he's been improving from day to day. I can honestly say I don't see any difference in Lafreniere's game today than I did in his first season. And he's regressed from last year.

 

I'm struggling to see this changing in any meaningful way too. He might become a 30g/60p guy someday, but he'll probably be the same non-impact, inconsistent player that disappears from time to time. Kinda like a young Kreider.

 

Was labeled as an elite playmaker and the guy has 33 assists in 171 NHL games...

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well if he'll come cheap enough on his next contract, would be happy to give it another 2 seasons after this

 

lots of fans were pretty much at the end of their rope with Chytil and then the promise started to materialize.

 

never mind that he hasn't come close to meeting 1OA expectations, there could still be a very good player to develop

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36 minutes ago, josh said:

Another top pick going to the scraps.

 

Let's blame the player, again!

Why is everything so black or white with you? Why is it either the player or the org? Is it really that hard to hold each responsible for the part they had in this? 

 

Of course the player deserves some blame. He can control his effort level, his conditioning level, his defensive game, and how noticeable he is on the ice. 

 

He can't control his role or ice time but he can make the coach's decision very hard, and in this case he chose to make the coach's decision very easy.

 

There's a reason why players like Chytil and Kakko are passing the eyeball test now, and Lafreniere still looks the same as he did in his rookie year, there has been almost zero development or improvement... That's really hard to do. And yet somehow he manages at times to look even worse than he did as a rookie.

 

Now you can criticize the team for not putting him in certain situations that other first overalls got, but not many first overalls get drafted onto competitive teams, we've covered this territory already. 

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1 hour ago, josh said:

Ironically, he's on pace to have the most productive season for any of the recent crop of Rangers forward prospects

Not really tho.

 

Chytil 8g,9a in 27 games

Lafreniere 5g, 12a in 36 games

Kakko 9g, 6a in 36 games

 

Chytil clearly the most productive. Laf 2 points ahead of Kakko in same # of games, but I’ll take 9g and 15 points over 5 goals and 17 points.

 

Kravtsov barely plays.

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What about all of the top 6 minutes he's gotten?  And much of the time he's played with Chytil and Kakko, those two have been excellent.  Playing with those two against the opposition's lesser lights has represented a great opportunity.  It's not like he's been stuck playing with McKegg and Blais 8 minutes per game.

 

He's not going to bring a great deal in a trade, as it's the scouts who are quoted who will determine that.  We'll just have to see his attitude at the end of the year.  Is he going to pout and hold out or is he going to be like Kakko, sign a modest bridge, and go all in?

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11 minutes ago, Zuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuc said:

Not really tho.

 

Chytil 8g,9a in 27 games

Lafreniere 5g, 12a in 36 games

Kakko 9g, 6a in 36 games

 

Chytil clearly the most productive. Laf 2 points ahead of Kakko in same # of games, but I’ll take 9g and 15 points over 5 goals and 17 points.

 

Kravtsov barely plays.

The most productive season was Lafreniere last season with 31 points. Chytil and Kakko havent broken 23 points.

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3 minutes ago, Sod16 said:

What about all of the top 6 minutes he's gotten?  And much of the time he's played with Chytil and Kakko, those two have been excellent.  Playing with those two against the opposition's lesser lights has represented a great opportunity.  It's not like he's been stuck playing with McKegg and Blais 8 minutes per game.

 

He's not going to bring a great deal in a trade, as it's the scouts who are quoted who will determine that.  We'll just have to see his attitude at the end of the year.  Is he going to pout and hold out or is he going to be like Kakko, sign a modest bridge, and go all in?

He literally has zero leverage. He has to take 2-2.5 per. He has shown little to nothing.

 

5 minutes ago, josh said:

The most productive season was Lafreniere last season with 31 points. Chytil and Kakko havent broken 23 points.

Gotta say...looking at the numbers is surprising. I think the eye test shows a much different situation. Didn't Laf get quite a few "gimme goals" last year? Idk, I guess we shall see.

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1 hour ago, RichieNextel305 said:

I’m still a major fan and believer in Lafreniere. That being said, some of that article is very true; he just hasn’t been as advertised and hasn’t been as good as we all believed. This type of thing, this scratching, can go one of two ways: either strains a relationship or is either an ass kick to get it going. 

 

I like the way you put this, Richie.  I also have faith in this kid.

 

Ok, he's not going to be a MacKinnon, a Kane, Stamkos, Sid, McDavid or Matthews.  But he has NHL talent, and he sure as hell isn't going to cost a whole lot to keep around after this year.

 

I think it may be worth riding it out with him for another 3 year deal.  It's in there...I know it is!  Something's gonna click one day, and probably not soon.  But he has more than what we've seen so far.  I just hope he gets his head out of his ass soon, so we can make a run at this thing!

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4 minutes ago, jsm7302 said:

He literally has zero leverage. He has to take 2-2.5 per. He has shown little to nothing.

 

Gotta say...looking at the numbers is surprising. I think the eye test shows a much different situation. Didn't Laf get quite a few "gimme goals" last year? Idk, I guess we shall see.

Not to rag on the guy even more but the majority of his goals SEEM to be rebounds and pucks bouncing in off of him. There have been only a handful of skill plays that lead to a goal. Which is even more worrisome in a way.

 

as someone else mentioned there’s no trade value there. Sign him to a deal. Hope something clicks and he improves drastically. I still think he needs to improve his skating. He’s just not quick enough for the nhl. 
 

rengers suck a developing. This retool on the go method has some serious disadvantages. But Laf has never taken off when he did get the chances so blame is on both sides here.

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Here's his original scouting report: https://www.thedraftanalyst.com/2020-nhl-draft/2020-draft-profile-lw-alexis-lafreniere/

 

Scouting Report:
The crown jewel of the 2020 draft class, Lafreniere delivered a season for the ages of any major junior player, let alone one who is only 18 years old. After dominating the under-18 Ivan Hlinka and winning the 2019 CHL Player of the Year Award, Lafreniere won the QMJHL scoring title and earned MVP honors at the U20 world junior championship (10 points in 5 games) in leading Canada to gold. Not only is he a virtual lock to become the first French-Canadian skater to go first overall since Vincent Lecavalier in 1998, but he joined Sidney Crosby as the only two pre-draft prospects to win CHL MVP more than once. Lafreniere also is a team-first leader who has made a profound impact on Rimouski, turning them from a 59-point doormat in 2016-17 to back-to-back playoff seasons of 90+ points.
 

A gifted and versatile scoring winger with outstanding hockey sense and the ability to elevate his game when the situation calls for it, Lafreniere possesses many traits that scream elite and potential NHL superstar. From his deadly wrist shot to his superior playmaking and vision, the St. Eustache native checks every block imaginable when it comes to possessing the puck. What makes Lafreniere unique, however, is his insanely high compete level, tenacity on the puck, physicality, and selflessness. Play him on a line with equally heralded or accomplished prospects, and he’ll make it a point to tap into their strengths rather than make himself the center of attention.
 

Lafreniere is an excellent skater in all directions, but his powerful stride allows him to separate from opponents in open ice. It’s rare to see a winger nearing 200 pounds of any age to be able to turn on the jets immediately following a physical battle, but Lafreniere’s foot speed, long stride, and expert anticipation places him in open ice with a numbers advantage multiple times a period, let alone an entire game. Playing in a junior league has something to do with that, but there no reason to believe his escapability in close contact won’t translate to success within the trenches of NHL warfare, where time and space are earned the hard way. Lafreniere can tailor his game to fit any style of play, and his ability to play physical causes significant matchup problems for smaller opponents.
 

Lafreniere can be used in every situation, and his ability to dominate the puck no matter the in-game environment creates swaths of open ice for his mates. Lafreniere is an incredibly unselfish player, and his youthful exuberance when coupled with his physicality reveal a player of the throwback variety. Lafreniere seems to understand and execute set-plays on or off the puck, and he can be counted on as a reliable and tenacious forechecker who creates turnovers in the neutral zone. Although the volume of high-end prospects being developed out of the QMJHL has slowed down, Lafreniere is at the very top of an elite crop of Quebec Leaguers poised to garner the attention of scouts from all over North American and Europe. The top slot among 2020 draft hopefuls was Lafreniere’s to lose for several years, and never once did he relinquish it.

Where the fuck is all this now???  Come on, kid!!!

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That’s not the player we’ve seen in nyc by a mile and a half. I don’t even know how to begin trying to explain what happened to him. 
 

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From his deadly wrist shot to his superior playmaking and vision, the St. Eustache native checks every block imaginable when it comes to possessing the puck.

 

Have not even seen glimpses of this. I don’t get it. Unless he got space Jam’d you don’t just lose this ability because you’re playing against better guys. 

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6 minutes ago, Ozzy said:

Here's his original scouting report: https://www.thedraftanalyst.com/2020-nhl-draft/2020-draft-profile-lw-alexis-lafreniere/

 

Scouting Report:
The crown jewel of the 2020 draft class, Lafreniere delivered a season for the ages of any major junior player, let alone one who is only 18 years old. After dominating the under-18 Ivan Hlinka and winning the 2019 CHL Player of the Year Award, Lafreniere won the QMJHL scoring title and earned MVP honors at the U20 world junior championship (10 points in 5 games) in leading Canada to gold. Not only is he a virtual lock to become the first French-Canadian skater to go first overall since Vincent Lecavalier in 1998, but he joined Sidney Crosby as the only two pre-draft prospects to win CHL MVP more than once. Lafreniere also is a team-first leader who has made a profound impact on Rimouski, turning them from a 59-point doormat in 2016-17 to back-to-back playoff seasons of 90+ points.
 

A gifted and versatile scoring winger with outstanding hockey sense and the ability to elevate his game when the situation calls for it, Lafreniere possesses many traits that scream elite and potential NHL superstar. From his deadly wrist shot to his superior playmaking and vision, the St. Eustache native checks every block imaginable when it comes to possessing the puck. What makes Lafreniere unique, however, is his insanely high compete level, tenacity on the puck, physicality, and selflessness. Play him on a line with equally heralded or accomplished prospects, and he’ll make it a point to tap into their strengths rather than make himself the center of attention.
 

Lafreniere is an excellent skater in all directions, but his powerful stride allows him to separate from opponents in open ice. It’s rare to see a winger nearing 200 pounds of any age to be able to turn on the jets immediately following a physical battle, but Lafreniere’s foot speed, long stride, and expert anticipation places him in open ice with a numbers advantage multiple times a period, let alone an entire game. Playing in a junior league has something to do with that, but there no reason to believe his escapability in close contact won’t translate to success within the trenches of NHL warfare, where time and space are earned the hard way. Lafreniere can tailor his game to fit any style of play, and his ability to play physical causes significant matchup problems for smaller opponents.
 

Lafreniere can be used in every situation, and his ability to dominate the puck no matter the in-game environment creates swaths of open ice for his mates. Lafreniere is an incredibly unselfish player, and his youthful exuberance when coupled with his physicality reveal a player of the throwback variety. Lafreniere seems to understand and execute set-plays on or off the puck, and he can be counted on as a reliable and tenacious forechecker who creates turnovers in the neutral zone. Although the volume of high-end prospects being developed out of the QMJHL has slowed down, Lafreniere is at the very top of an elite crop of Quebec Leaguers poised to garner the attention of scouts from all over North American and Europe. The top slot among 2020 draft hopefuls was Lafreniere’s to lose for several years, and never once did he relinquish it.

Where the fuck is all this now???  Come on, kid!!!

Whoever wrote this better not quit their day job. 

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6 minutes ago, Ozzy said:

Here's his original scouting report: https://www.thedraftanalyst.com/2020-nhl-draft/2020-draft-profile-lw-alexis-lafreniere/

 

Scouting Report:
The crown jewel of the 2020 draft class, Lafreniere delivered a season for the ages of any major junior player, let alone one who is only 18 years old. After dominating the under-18 Ivan Hlinka and winning the 2019 CHL Player of the Year Award, Lafreniere won the QMJHL scoring title and earned MVP honors at the U20 world junior championship (10 points in 5 games) in leading Canada to gold. Not only is he a virtual lock to become the first French-Canadian skater to go first overall since Vincent Lecavalier in 1998, but he joined Sidney Crosby as the only two pre-draft prospects to win CHL MVP more than once. Lafreniere also is a team-first leader who has made a profound impact on Rimouski, turning them from a 59-point doormat in 2016-17 to back-to-back playoff seasons of 90+ points.
 

A gifted and versatile scoring winger with outstanding hockey sense and the ability to elevate his game when the situation calls for it, Lafreniere possesses many traits that scream elite and potential NHL superstar. From his deadly wrist shot to his superior playmaking and vision, the St. Eustache native checks every block imaginable when it comes to possessing the puck. What makes Lafreniere unique, however, is his insanely high compete level, tenacity on the puck, physicality, and selflessness. Play him on a line with equally heralded or accomplished prospects, and he’ll make it a point to tap into their strengths rather than make himself the center of attention.
 

Lafreniere is an excellent skater in all directions, but his powerful stride allows him to separate from opponents in open ice. It’s rare to see a winger nearing 200 pounds of any age to be able to turn on the jets immediately following a physical battle, but Lafreniere’s foot speed, long stride, and expert anticipation places him in open ice with a numbers advantage multiple times a period, let alone an entire game. Playing in a junior league has something to do with that, but there no reason to believe his escapability in close contact won’t translate to success within the trenches of NHL warfare, where time and space are earned the hard way. Lafreniere can tailor his game to fit any style of play, and his ability to play physical causes significant matchup problems for smaller opponents.
 

Lafreniere can be used in every situation, and his ability to dominate the puck no matter the in-game environment creates swaths of open ice for his mates. Lafreniere is an incredibly unselfish player, and his youthful exuberance when coupled with his physicality reveal a player of the throwback variety. Lafreniere seems to understand and execute set-plays on or off the puck, and he can be counted on as a reliable and tenacious forechecker who creates turnovers in the neutral zone. Although the volume of high-end prospects being developed out of the QMJHL has slowed down, Lafreniere is at the very top of an elite crop of Quebec Leaguers poised to garner the attention of scouts from all over North American and Europe. The top slot among 2020 draft hopefuls was Lafreniere’s to lose for several years, and never once did he relinquish it.

Where the fuck is all this now???  Come on, kid!!!

No kidding....I would never read that and think....OHHH THEY MUST BE TALKING ABOUT LAFFY!!!

Leave it to the NYR to get the #1 OA bust of the decade+. 

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2 minutes ago, Ozzy said:

 

Right???

 

Who the hell is this guy we drafted???  He's the polar opposite of that report!!  LOL

Whoever wrote this just basically over salivated. They're noting a 10-point in 5 games MVP performance at the WJCs... Bedard just had 7 points last night as an underager. 

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