Rangers hope to know about Jack Jones, top prospect in rookie camp

Rangers’ 2021-22 season ended just three months ago, but it’s already time to get back on the ice, though New York’s heat may indicate otherwise.

The rookie camp will begin on Wednesday at the MSG Training Center in Tarrytown and run through September 20. The camp will include two possible games against their counterparts with the Flyers on September 16 and 17 in Allentown, Pa. The Rangers will dive straight into main camp on September 21, before the six-game preseason schedule begins with a game against the Islanders at the Garden on September 26.

The organization will closely evaluate some of the rookies as pieces of management to piece together Rangers’ roster for the 2022-23 season. Here are the top prospects to look for in the rookie camp and what Rangers can expect to know about them:

Zac Jones: Can he defend enough at the NHL level?

Jones will compete with Libor Hajek and Matthew Robertson for the role of sixth/seventh defenseman. There’s always a chance that Rangers might invite an experienced defender on contract to a professional tryout, but their hat position makes filling the job more lucrative internally. Hajek may be the most experienced of the three, with four seasons and 94 NHL games under his belt, but Jones is a highly skilled substitute, having not only some NHL experience of his own, but also influenced by the AHL Wolf Pack last season. Is.

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Rangers Defenseman Zack Jones
AP

“He was awesome, I thought he was our best player for the whole season,” Hartford’s assistant coach-turned-player development assistant Casey Torres told The Post. “He was very dynamic. He built the offense from high and low probability situations. He fought hard. Such great vision on the ice and a real dynamic presence for us at the back end.”

Jones drafted 68th overall in 2019, making a total of six assists through 10 games in 2020-21 and 12 games in 2021-22 for Rangers. The transition of every young defender in the NHL may not be as smooth as it was for Braden Schneider, but Jones may improve as he becomes more confident and familiar with the pace of the league. His ability to effectively quarterback the top power play for Massachusetts and the Wolf Pack set him apart, but Jones doesn’t have a clear path to such a role for the Rangers, with Adam Fox and Jacob Trouba already. Cement has already been done at those places. Apart from further solidifying his shot, the aggressive side of his game is not a concern. The question now is whether he is able to fully translate his strong ice vision and skating ability to the NHL in his defensive play.

Will Coyle: Is he better off getting the top six minutes in Hartford or the fourth line minutes in New York?

The last thing the Rangers want to do is find another prospect who isn’t ready for the NHL. Almost everything about Cuylle, though, screams NHL-ready. From his 6-foot-3, 212-pound build, which he knows how to use, to his powerful left-handed shot, Cuylle has an opportunity to prove that he’s in this upcoming training camp. Can skate with older people. The Rangers’ No. 60 pick in the 2020 draft will have to beat the likes of Dryden Hunt, Julian Gauthier, Johnny Brodzinski, Ryan Carpenter and Gustav Ridahl, but there is certainly a way for Kyule to make the Rangers roster. , if not right then out of training camp.

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Will Coyle is playing for Team Canada.
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The Rangers must decide whether Cuylle will have the most advantage from the big AHL minutes or little role in the NHL.

Brennan Othman: Can he break into the top nine with a great camp and convince Rangers to audition him?

Considering Othman may not be assigned to the AHL, Rangers have few options when it comes to the left winger. He will either make his own opening-night roster or be assigned back to the Flint Firebirds of the Ontario Hockey League. There is also the possibility that the Rangers may want to see Othman longer in the lineup, which could cost him a few NHL games while management makes the final decision. Othman was ranked 16th overall last year, and his offensive skills are best suited for the top six. Considering how many young wingers Rangers already have in the mix of the top two lines – such as Alexis Lafrenier, Kapo Kako and Vitaly Kravtsov – Othman could be dropped a spot this season.

Matthew Robertson: Can he improve his consistency?

Robertson’s 6-4, 201-pound frame makes him difficult to ignore on the Rangers’ depth charts. The previous season was his first with the Wolff pack and he combined in 65 games with 36 penalty minutes for one goal and 10 assists. It is also worth noting that 2021–22 was Robertson’s first season away from home, after playing five seasons with the Edmonton Oil Kings of the Western Hockey League.

His first professional season had its ups and downs, so it might be in the Rangers’ best interest to let Robertson marinate in the AHL for a while to gain some more confidence. Now that Schneider is up and Jones can follow suit, Robertson will have the opportunity to become top defender at Hartford.

“He’s got that physical presence,” Torres said. “He does a great job of ending plays in the defensive zone like he has a really good skill set for him.”

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Bobby Trivigno
Robert Sabo

Bobby Trivigno: Can his overall game make up for his lack in size?

As one of the new players to Rangers’ potential pool, Trivigno will be looking to make a mark. He may not necessarily be as close to making the NHL roster as the rest of the prospects on this list, but the spirited winger is a special kind of player and worth a look.

“Last weekend, they had a really good weekend vibe, players on the other team wanted to hit them,” Torres said. “I think it’s part of his game. He brings so much intensity and such fire that people want to hate him, but I think it’s a cool feature. It looks like he’s really in the heat from the ice.” Had trained well, he has added some muscle. He is definitely doing everything in his power to give himself a shot.”

The primary concern about Trivigno is his 5-8 stature – even though he plays a game much larger than his size.

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