Buzz: There is mutual interest in Benoit Pouliot staying with the Rangers

Benoit PouliotThe Rangers have expressed interest in bringing Benoit Pouliot back next season and Pouliot is interested in staying in New York, according to his agent. (Daily News)

His agent says that he doesn’t think things will be dealt with until after the season ends and he has “no reason to believe” that something won’t get done to keep Pouliot in New York. (Daily News)

Pouliot, 27, is playing under a one-year contract worth $1.3 million.

Since his entry-level contract expired following the 2008-09 season, Pouliot has played each year on a one-year contract:

  • 2009-10: $803,250 (Minnesota then traded to Montreal)
  • 2010-11: $1.35 million (Montreal)
  • 2011-12: $1.1 million (Boston)
  • 2012-13: $1.8 million (Tampa Bay)
  • 2013-14: $1.3 million (Rangers)

From the Rangers game notes last night, “Benoit Pouliot tallied a goal, and recorded three shots on goal in 15:48 of ice time. The Rangers forward extended his point streak to seven games (three goals, four assists over the span), and he has nine points (three goals, six assists) in his last nine games. The seven-game point streak is Pouliot’s second of the season (Dec. 15 – Dec. 29), and ties his career-high. Pouliot’s 15 goals this season are one shy of his career-high, and his 36 points are a career-high.”

Pouliot had 2 goals and 2 assists in the first 27 games of the season. Pouliot was scratched on 12/7/13, played on 12/10/13 and was scratched again on 12/12/13.

He has played every game since (49 games) and has 12 goals and 18 assists.

On his better play during the season, Pouliot said on MSG last night “It’s tough when you get scratched or when you start like we did, it’s not like we were playing bad but the production wasn’t there. We weren’t getting the points we wanted and couldn’t put the puck in the net. He sat Zucc, sat me for a couple of games and it’s a wake up call and just to work on your game and get those bounces and I think second part of the season has been awesome.”

Pouliot has the second highest Corsi rating on the Rangers with 55.2%, meaning that when Pouliot is on the ice at 5 on 5 the Rangers control 55.2% of the shot attempts.

Adam Rotter: I think Pouliot is deserving of a two-year deal and understands that he has found a spot with the Rangers where he has a nice role and good chemistry with linemates. He has moved around the last few years and looks like he has found stability with the Rangers and I think a deal can be reached that works for both sides, maybe two-years and $1.8 million per year.

Read: The Benoit Pouliot, Derick Brassard, Mats Zuccarello line

Benoit Pouliot, Mats Zuccarello, Benoit Pouliot4/10|9:13AM: Brassard says that sometimes their line gets put up against the other teams third pair and when that happens they are able to take advantage. (NY Post)

Brassard adds that there is no selfishness on that line and that when a player is open he knows he will get the puck. (Newsday)

4/9|6:35PM: Following the Rangers win over the Hurricanes, Alain Vigneault joked that the Benoit Pouliot, Derick Brassard, Mats Zuccarello line was the line that “didn’t want to score.” He added, “they had some great looks and it has some good chemistry 5 on 5 and on the PP and we need them to play that way.”

Dave Maloney said after the game, “they have been so much fun to watch. When the game is played well it’s the skill game and capitalizing on the small parts of the ice. This threesome has been by and large the Rangers best this season.”

Joe Micheletti said that it’s three unselfish players who are so fun to watch when they pass the puck around. He said that their chemistry is so good that when they get into open areas they don’t even need to look to see where they are.

Zuccarello says that the line is three guys who work hard and don’t think too much when on the ice.

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Read: Benoit Pouliot Is A Physical Forward For The Rangers

Benoit PouliotIn the first 27 games of the season, Benoit Pouliot had 2 goals and 2 assists while seeing his ice time drop from 13:38 in October to 10:22 in November.

  • In December, Pouliot had 9 points in 12 games and averaged 12:34 per game.
  • In January, Pouliot has 2 goals and 5 assists. He has 93 hits on the season.

Pouliot said that his issues earlier in the season weren’t because of lack of focus, but instead because he put too much pressure on himself. Pouliot said that he is just playing on his instincts now. (Daily News)

Alain Vigneault says that Pouliot has been playing with a lot of confidence lately and is actually one of the Rangers most physical forwards with how he finishes check and makes things hard on the defense.

Pouliot told Joe Micheletti before the Rangers win over the Red Wings that earlier in the season he wasn’t going to the tough areas, he wasn’t making smart plays with the puck and decided that enough was enough and he had to get better. He told Micheletti that he watches his shifts multiple times over to see what he is doing and how he can be better.

He told John Giannone before the game against Ottawa that being physical is “huge” for his game and “if I can use my size the way that I have been lately, things have been going pretty well so I just want to keep it going and create room for my linemates.”

Dave Maloney said that Pouliot’s physical results in the Rangers scoring goals.

Pouliot said that whenever he goes in to make a hit he is always trying to be careful and respectful of opponent. (Daily News)

Pierre McGuire repeatedly said on Wednesday against the Islanders that Pouliot was playing the best hockey he has played since he was a junior player in Sudbury.

Read: Benoit Pouliot Stopped Thinking

Benoit PouliotBenoit Pouliot has a five-game point streak and points in six of his last seven games.

When asked what changed in his game, Pouliot told John Giannone after the game against the Wild, “I just try to stop thinking too much. Just play the game I am supposed to play and go out there and play hockey. It’s a matter of going consistently.”

Alain Vigneault said before the Maple Leafs game that Pouliot took his being a healthy scratch and responded in a big way, “jumping at a second opportunity.” He says that Pouliot is being more physical and finishing his checks.

Note: Benoit Pouliot Lately

Pouliot

12/22/13:

Pouliot tells John Giannone, “Maybe I was thinking too much. I stopped thinking and just started playing hockey. I came back to what I was supposed to do or should be doing and not trying to do too much in my game.”

12/21/13:

7:41PM: In the month of December, Benoit Pouliot has 5 points in 7 games and he currently has points in three-straight games.

When on the ice in the last ten games, the Rangers have had 50% or more of the shot attempts in eight of them.

In the last four games, Pouliot has played over 11:23 and he played a season high 16:59 against the Islanders. In the four games prior, Pouliot played under 10 minutes in each game.

Alain Vigneault said this week that Pouliot has been one of the Rangers top players over the last few games.

Adam Rotter: He’s been good lately and it seems like he has finally gotten the message that his NHL career is on the line. He’s much more engaged than he has been at any other point in the year and for the most part he’s been effective. He is still going offsides a bit much, but he’s scoring and battling and can hopefully keep it going.

Read: Benoit Pouliot Lately

Pouliot

1:27PM: Pouliot is scratched tonight and Alain Vigneault said earlier that Pouliot has gotten a fair chance but hasn’t played as well as he or the coaches hoped he would.

2:24PM: Benoit Pouliot has played in all 29 games for the Rangers so far this season and only has one point in his past 176games.

Pouliot saw his ice time drop from 13:38 in 12 October games to 10:22 in 15 November games.

On November 4th, Pouliot played 12:41 and since then, 15 games, he has played under 10 minutes nine different times.

Joe Micheletti said on MSG last week that Alain Vigneault said that he was going to keep playing Pouliot.


Sam Rosen said that Vigneault called this the the “crossroads” of Pouliot’s career.

Joe said during the Sabres game that the coaches are showing patience with him because when they see him in practice they see the skating and offensive skill that he possesses.

Vigneault spoke about Pouliot earlier this season and how he better seize the opportunities currently being given to him.