John Giannone, on his Bleeding Blueshirts podcast, asked Jim Schoenfeld about players in Hartford that the Rangers have an eye on.
Schoenfeld said that he hated to name players for fear of leaving one out, but said:
- “Danny Kristo has very good offensive skills and we have him killing penalties too because we want him to learn to play away form the puck. I don’t believe there is anyone in the American league who is good enough offensively to survive in the NHL with that skill alone. They will have to learn to be two-way players in one way or another. They will need to learn how to finish a check, block a shot, learn to be reliable in the defensive zone, in the neutral zone they will have to understand coverage because it’s going to be increasingly difficult for them to score. You can’t be giving up what you can’t get back. We are trying to turn them into two way players.”
- “JT Miller has made another trip back to Hartford. He has skill, people have seen his skill. They have seen him score goals, they have seen a good wrist shot, a good release. They have seen courage and toughness. JT Miller is learning to play away from the puck because it’s too risky and the coach doesn’t feel comfortable enough to put him on the ice in certain situations. It goes to play and learn rather than stay here and condition.”
- “Dylan McIlrath has made great strides this year. He is tough as nails, a good scrapper, good body checker and he is developing his craft.”
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Rangers defenseman Aaron Johnson told 1015 The Hawk in July that he understands what his role is with the Rangers and that he is a depth player who will bring experience.
Johnson said, “that has turned into my role as I get older and I won’t be a 1-2 defenseman in the NHL. I am okay with that. It’s just a matter of working and helping the team. They told me to come in, have a good camp…injuries happen, there are a lot of things that change during the season.”
He said that he has also evolved into a role model for younger players and it’s a role that he enjoys having.
Johnson also admitted that his familiarity with many of the Rangers, especially Rick Nash, played a big role in deciding where he wanted to play next season, “anytime you can play with guys that you know and are good buddies with, it helps. I played with Brad Richards in Rimouski when we won the Memorial Cup, Derick Brassard. A lot of familiarity and that can only help you in the long run.”
For more on Aaron Johnson, CLICK HERE.
Prior to the opening of Free Agency on July 5th at 12PM, the NHL allowed teams so speak with pending unrestricted free agents on July 3rd and 4th.
It was during this window that the Rangers spoke with Aaron Johnson and showed their interest in bringing in the veteran defenseman.
Johnson told 1015 The Hawk in July, “I talked with my agent before free agency opened and there were teams that were interested and NY was at the top of the list. When it was noon and teams were allowed to sign they called and it was that easy. It was send the paper work and sign and move on. The deal was pretty much done and it was waiting until the league allowed it.”
He noted that unlike times previously in his career where things seemed done and weren’t, the Rangers actually followed through with their guarantee to sign him.
Johnson noted that after he signed his contract with the Rangers the team asked him to wait an hour before mentioning it to friends and family but within ten minutes Darren Dreger had broken the news to everyone.
On New York, Johnson said that he is excited and looking forward to the challenge.”
Johnson signed a one-year deal with the Rangers for $600,000.
For more on Johnson, CLICK HERE.
12:02PM: The Rangers have also announced that JT Miller has switched his number from #47 to #10.
10 was last worn by Marian Gaborik.
11:11AM: The Rangers have announced that their new players will wear the following numbers:
It was previously noted that Moore would wear #28. Moore wore #18 during his season with the Rangers in 2005-06.
Steve Eminger has worn #44 for the Rangers the last three seasons. #4 was also worn by Lindy Ruff, Ryan Hollweg and Per Djoos.
47 was worn by JT Miller last season. Miller did not choose #47, it was assigned to him originally at the 2011 Traverse City Tournament.
Pouliot is the only Ranger to wear #67.
Defenseman Aaron Johnson has played 291 games in the NHL and has a career high of 56 in a season.
Johnson spent the 11-12 season with Columbus an Aaron Portzline wrote in the Columbus Dispatch that he is a guy with some good offensive instincts but has been known to struggle in his own zone.
He says that Johnson’s ideal role would be as the number seven defenseman on a good team who plays around 20 games in a season. He notes that Johnson is the kind of guy who always has a smile on his face and brings a positive outlook.
Johnson’s stats are:
Johnson is on a one-way contract worth $600,000 and was Rick Nash’s best friend in Columbus.
For more on Johnson, CLICK HERE.
Yesterday, in the NY Post, Larry Brooks noted that the Rangers acquisition of Justin Falk and signing of Aaron Johnson spelled the end of Roman Hamrlik, Matt Gilroy and Steve Eminger’s time with the Rangers.
Hamrlik was claimed off of waivers by the Rangers on March 6 and played 12 regular season games for the Rangers and two playoff games.
Eminger has played three seasons for the Rangers and signed one-year contracts with them the last two summers. He played in 35 regular season games and 11 playoff games.
Gilroy signed an AHL contract and played the first half of the season with the Whale before signing an NHL contract after the lockout ended. He played 15 games for the Rangers in the regular season.
Stu Bickel is also on a one-way contract for this season with a cap hit of $750,000.