NHL Draft 2017: For the first time in 13 years the NY Rangers selected within the top 10. Last time was 2004 and they drafted G Al Montoya. With the 7th overall and 21st overall Ranger fans were not pleased.
NHL Draft 2017: The New York Rangers, made a trade yesterday afternoon, that in a way shakes the core group of this team. After seeing Dan Girardi‘s contract gets bought out after 11 seasons with the Rangers. The Rangers theme seems to be wanting to get younger, while still staying competitive. With the trade yesterday June 24, 2017, the Rangers sent off 27-year-old C Derek Stepan, who’s played all seven seasons with the Rangers. Stepan emerged as a #1 center during the 2013 season and continued to improve year after year. If you are a Rangers fan I can guarantee you’ll never forget the goal Stepan scored to seal the series victory against the Washington Capitals in overtime during the 2015 Stanley Cup playoffs.
The year before that the Ranger lost in the Cup and then came back for the Western Conference finals to fall short to the Tampa Bay Lightning. Since then Stepan’s career has been in a stall, and with his contract, at $6.5 mil AAV until 2020-21 left the Rangers weary, thus why he was traded. Also sending off 28-year-old G Antti Raanta, which is disheartening to see because he could have possibly been the Rangers starter in a few years. But at $1 mil and a UFA next season he would have had to be resigned or possibly left the Rangers. Receiving a 21-year-old right-handed defenseman who is still on his entry-level contract helps the Rangers budget some cap space for a top 6 forward or top 4 defensemen. Anthony D’Angelo has had troubles in playing in the OHL and recently just last season he was suspended and it seems as if the New York media found out and picking apart this kid. Despite his off-ice troubles, the right-handed defenseman is extremely talented, he skates well and is more of an offensive-minded type d-man. He posted great numbers in the OHL and if he can stay out of trouble, he’ll thrive in NY.
Also with that trade, the Rangers picked up a 2017 1st round pick, 7th overall. Which was used last night, and they drafted the 3rd highest ranked European prospect, Lias Andersson, who has completely overseen this draft, to start this draft was weaker than usual, but Andersson was said to be a #18 ranked player, but from what I’ve read he’s much better than that. He plays a very gritty game and defends well, while still having an offensive edge and great play in all three zones of the ice. Andersson won the Silver with Sweden during the World Juniors and scored three goals in seven games. The Rangers got a solid forward, one who will be at the professional level in 1-2
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years. Despite Andersson’s good prospect outlook, Rangers fan bashed the Rangers pick because he’s not an immediate scorer, meanwhile if these people knew anything they would know not one guy coming out this year’s draft is going to make an immediate impact.
The Rangers were back up at 21st overall selecting Filip Chytil, again Ranger fans did not like this pick. But again the kid was projected to go within this range anyways so Ranger fans criticizing this pick are not the brightest. Chytil is said to be an excellent skater, possess near perfect skating ability, he is a bit lanky and not so strong on the puck but he’s 17-years-old, once he gets some strength he’ll be a solid playmaker. Chytil creates much of his offense similar to Andersson gritty, tenacious forward game.
Personally, what I’ve read on both the Rangers first round selections is good, once they develop and gain some experience, size they’ll be NHL ready. Andersson much sooner than Chytil but they both played in the top international leagues in the world and excelled at that level. For the first time in 13 years since the Rangers drafted within the top 10, I simply will not and cannot complain. They got two very solid forwards and have some future in the making now.