4:27PM: Larry Brooks writes that the injury to Chris Kreider has shown that the Rangers don’t have enough NHL ready depth to fill their lineup. He says that JT Miller appears to be the only top-nine forward ready to play in the NHL and he will be scratched for the second straight game. (NY Post)
2:05PM: Yesterday at the Rangers practice in Vancouver, Carl Hagelin was skating on a line with Derek Stepan and Rick Nash. (Steve Zipay)
Alain Vigneault said that he was about 80% sure that that trio would start the game together against the Canucks and that putting Hagelin with Stepan and Nash allows them to replicate the speed they lost with Chris Kreider’s injury. (NY Post)
With Hagelin moving up, Dominic Moore took some rushes with Brad Richards and Marty St. Louis as did Derek Dorsett. (NY Post)
Moore, who was a teammate of St. Louis’ in Tampa Bay, said that he knows how St. Louis wants to play and that because of their past as teammates he may be able to help St. Louis break out a bit. (Daily News)
Last night against Winnipeg, Carl Hagelin scored a hat trick after being put on a line with Brad Richards and Benoit Pouliot.
Dave Maloney said after the game, “24 hours ago we were talking about Carl Hagelin and how he was moving around, had a meeting on the off day with the coach about going to the net and needing to be a better player causing things to happen in the offensive zone. Tonight he has 3 on the books.
Prior to last night Hagelin only had one goal in his past 13 games.
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Sweden beat Slovenia 5-0 to move on in the Olympics.
Henrik Lundqvist stopped 19 of 19 shots to pick up his second shutout of the Olympics.
Carl Hagelin scored two goals in the third period and played a total of 12:28.
Hagelin had two shots, was a plus two and played 3:54, 3:08 and 5:26.
Sweden will play the winner of Russia/Finland.
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Larry Brooks wonders if the Rangers, even though speed on the wing has become a strength, would consider moving Carl Hagelin to add a bit more size and strength. (NY Post)
A player he mentions, who would add that size and strength, would be Winnipeg Jets captain, and two-time Stanley Cup winner, Andrew Ladd. (NY Post)
Ladd, a left wing, is 6-3, 205 has 10 goals, 22 assists, 91 hits and two more years after this season on his contract at $4.4 million.
The 91 hits would be third on the Rangers behind Chris Kreider (108) and Brian Boyle (97). Ladd plays 19:18 a game and almost 2 minutes a night on the PK.
Adam Rotter: Hagelin is a very valuable and effective top-nine forward for the Rangers and they are not shopping him, but if they are to make a deal to get a quality player, a guy like a Ladd or Evander Kane or Yakupov or anyone, they will likely need to give him up. You can’t acquire top-six forwards for a Michael Del Zotto/JT Miller package, you need to give an NHL player who can make an immediate impact and Hagelin is that guy.
The Rangers have three top-nine wingers over 6-3 and three top-nine wingers 5-11 and under. I don’t think the Rangers will trade Hagelin this season and will go into the playoffs with what they have at forward and see if their speed, forechecking game can carry them.
Carl Hagelin followed up a five goal and five assists (in 15 game) November with a four goal and 0 assist (in 14 games) December.
So far, in four January games, Hagelin has two goals and an assist, is a plus two and is playing 16:52 per game.
Hagelin has 11 goals on the season, 4 of which are game winners and 14 of his 18 points are primary points.
Hagelin has been skating lately with Brad Richards and Ryan Callahan.
Adam Rotter: Right now Carl Hagelin is on one of the Rangers two “second lines.” His line and the line of Mats Zuccarello, Benoit Pouliot and Derick Brassard have around the same even strength averages over the last three games, between 13 and 14 minutes a night. Alain Vigneault distributes ice time much more evenly than John Tortorella did and the Rangers have enough depth at forward now to allow them to have a top-nine and not just a top-six. The determination of which line is really “the second line” is ultimately determined by which players the opponent puts out against them. One line will face the opponent second line and second pair defense and the other will face the third line pairings. Either way, both lines have enough talent to be able to create positive matchups against lesser players.