The New York Rangers prospects split a weekend series against the Philadelphia Flyers. After a week of practicing the Rangers wrapped up their prospects camp with two scrimmages against the Flyers.
The Rangers dropped the opening game Saturday night 6-3. Then bounced back and won Sunday’s match-up 3-2. For a lot of these prospects, it was their first time playing in front of the Rangers brass. It was also the first time Rangers fans got to see some of these top prospects in Rangers blue.
The Rangers took way too many penalties and found themselves constantly on the penalty kill. The three Rangers goal scorers were Morgan Barron, Patrick Khodorenko, and Lauri Pajuniemi. Pajuniemi had another goal that was waved off for a questionable high stick. After falling behind early 3-0 the Rangers scored three straight, but the Flyers scored three unanswered goals to hold on for a 6-3 win. The Rangers camera work and stream were rough and tough to follow at times. I know a lot of Rangers fans are very disappointed with the effort put into the stream, while the Flyers had an announcer and scoreboard for the Sunday stream. Here are some highlights from game one.
Here are some highlights from today’s @NYRangers prospects game. Matt Rempe’s fight, Brennan Othmann throwing the body, all 3 goals (Morgan Barron, Patrick Khodorenko, and Lauri Pajuniemi) and some great saves made by Talyn Boyko in net. #nyr #nhl #HockeyTwitter pic.twitter.com/s3Kv2AX5q6— Kyle Hall (@KHallNY) September 18, 2021
Similar story to game one the Rangers fell behind 2-0 early but Will Cuylle scored 2 power-play goals to tie the game at 2. Then in the third top prospect, Nils Lundkvist scored the game-winner on a great wrist shot. The Rangers got some great goaltending from Talyn Boyko and Dylan Garand. Here are the highlights from game two.
Here are some highlights from today's @NYRangers prospects scrimmage a 3-2 win vs the @NHLFlyers. Some nice saves by Talyn Boyko and Dylan Garand and all three goals (Will Cuylle x2 and Nils Lundkvist) #nyr #nhl #HockeyTwitter @TCAmericans @blazerhockey pic.twitter.com/WkYVlWxteF— Kyle Hall (@KHallNY) September 20, 2021
Here are a few standouts from this weekend.
The 2020 Rangers second-round pick was a stand-out in both games. He scored twice in the second game but was all over the ice in both scrimmages. His line of Morgan Barron and Lauri Pajuniemi was great and the best line of the weekend. Cuylle played 18 games with Hartford last year with the OHL season canceled. I think Cuylle will get a long look at the Rangers main camp to see what he can do against the big boys.
After winning the National Championship last year with UMass Jones suited up in 10 games with the Rangers to close out the year. Jones then played for USA Hockey at the World Championships and was named a Top 3 player on the team. Jones was by far the best-looking defenseman during the scrimmages, collecting a few assists and making some strong plays in the defensive zone. I got a chance to talk with Zac while he was at the world championships so go check that out.
Barron was the best Rangers player all weekend. He scored a great goal creating a turnover and beating the Flyers goalie in the first game. He picked up a couple of assists in the games and played really well in both the offensive and defensive zones. Barron had a great season for Hartford last year putting up 21 points in 21 games. Barron will be right in the mix for a bottom six role this season.
Lundkvist had an up and down weekend. He made some great plays and showed off his great skating skill. He also made some bad plays and turnovers that are expected of a young player. Lundkvist scored the game-winning goal in the second game with a great wrist shot. The final spot on the Rangers defense might come down to him and Jones.
The 6’8 240 lbs center was definitely noticeable out on the ice. He had a great fight in the first game. After throwing a big hit earlier in the game he dropped the gloves. The New York Rangers 2020 6th round pick should be back playing in the WHL with the Seattle Thunderbirds.
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