Sunday, August 30, 2009

Locked and Loaded

After a little more than a week of the exhibition season there is one trend that New York Ranger fans are going to be very happy about; this current crop of Ranger prospects is going to bring some serious offensive firepower to the table.

Ryan Bourque (2009 3rd) scored his 2nd goal of the exhibition season then added the winner during the shoot out round as his Quebec Remparts won their 4th straight exhibition game this time 4-3 over the Chicoutimi Saguenéens. Bourque has shown no difficulties in making the adjustment to the wide open style of the QMJHL.

Bourque also got hit with a 10 minute misconduct late in the 1st period as he showed he is not going to back down from anyone. Traverse City is not going to start soon enough for us as Bourque we expect to make a huge splash at the annual prospect event.

There is so far nothing not to like about Bourque's game as Bourque in our eyes going to exceed the expectations many will saddle him with.

Ethan Werek (2009 2nd) made his 2009 exhibition debut a good one scoring a goal as his Kingston Frontenacs defeated the Ottawa 67s 5-2. It was a good start for both Werek and the Frontenacs as they played what was expected to be their regular lineup due to several of the Frontenacs leaving for NHL camps.

The Werek goal was the kind of goal Ranger fans will enjoy watching as with the Frontenacs up 3-2, Werek drove to the net and tried a wrap around; he was stopped on his first attempt but kept working and eventually shoved the puck into the net.

It was not pretty but the result of Werek's hard work and that is exactly what the Rangers need from the 6'2 200 lb center. The Rangers have a lot of speed players among the prospects but Werek reminds us of Adam Graves during the early 1990s with his willingness to outwork anyone who is trying to get the puck from him.

A line of Werek/Grachev/Bourque would be a lot of fun to watch next week at Traverse City.


What Have We Learned?

After just one week there are a couple of items that are standing out from among the Ranger prospects. The first is that this group of prospects offers a lot more firepower than we have seen in a while.

This group of prospects has more players who can do more than just one thing, it is not that he is just a scorer or just a set up man. We are seeing prospects who can do both and even better is that they are very capable of creating their own offense.

The other item that is standing out is that these prospects got the message from John Tortorella about hard work and being in shape. To read about prospects who are doing well on training runs, showing up with game shape, or simply having a stronger work ethic.

With Traverse City just one week away it is going to be very interesting to watch the efforts of this current group. It would not be a surprise for this prospect roster to find themselves in the TC championship game on the 10th.

(Bourque and Werek courtesy of Aaron Bell)

1 comment:

Amos said...

man I'm getting so psyched already for this new crop of prospects... nothing i like to see more than future rangers suceeding at doing what the rangers chose them for. so far we haven't heard about daniel maggio, has he seen any preseason action?