On Friday, Alain Vigneault was asked about Dylan McIlrath and said that he “really progressed” from last year to this year.
He said that you want players to “force your hand” and that while Raphael Diaz “did everything we expected,” the organization felt that “Dylan deserved to start here.”
Vigneault said that right now McIlrath starts as the Rangers 7th defenseman but “that doesn’t mean that down the road he can’t be one of the top six. It depends on how he performs and how other guys perform.”
12:52PM: Vigneault said that he expects Diaz to report since he is under contract. (Gross)
12:02PM: Raphael Diaz and Jayson Megna cleared waivers and will be assigned to Hartford. (Elliotte Friedman)
Rangers GM Jeff Gorton put it at 50/50 that Diaz would clear.
Steve Zipay wonders if Diaz will report to Hartford. (Zipay)
Speculation over the summer was that Diaz could return to Switzerland at some point in the season.
Adam Rotter: It’s good news for the Rangers that both players cleared and allows them to keep another layer of depth in the organization. Diaz is what he is but he is a serviceable player who can play both sides and activate the offense. He was beaten out by Dylan McIlrath but still stands as the 8th defenseman in the organization.
As for Megna, he was pretty good in the preseason and seems like a 4A type player who can help Hartford win games and also step in for a few games here and there if needed.
From the Rangers:
NEW YORK, October 3, 2015 – New York Rangers General Manager Jeff Gorton announced today that the team has assigned forward Jayson Megna and defenseman Raphael Diaz to the Hartford Wolf Pack of the American Hockey League (AHL).
Following the transactions, the Rangers have 23 players on their active roster. The roster breakdown is listed below:
Forwards (14): Derick Brassard, Emerson Etem, Jesper Fast, Tanner Glass, Kevin Hayes, Chris Kreider, Oscar Lindberg, J.T. Miller, Dominic Moore, Rick Nash, Viktor Stalberg, Derek Stepan, Jarret Stoll, Mats Zuccarello
Defensemen (7): Dan Boyle, Dan Girardi, Kevin Klein, Ryan McDonagh, Dylan McIlrath, Marc Staal, Keith Yandle
Goaltenders (2): Henrik Lundqvist, Antti Raanta
12:53PM: Glass will undergo an MRI this afternoon but the team does not expect bad news to come from it. (NYR)
11:40AM: Tanner Glass, who is still on the Rangers active roster, did not skate today due to a leg injury he suffered in Wednesday win over the Bruins. (NYR)
Glass started to skate yesterday at practice before coming off the ice.
Alain Vigneault said yesterday that he thought Glass was going to be okay to practice yesterday.
The Rangers will not be practicing at West Point on Monday and Tuesday due to weather conditions. (NYR)
The team had scheduled practice and team building activities for the players to participate in.
On going to West Point, Vigneault said on MSG yesterday “That was Jason Vogel, JR and Alec Case who brought that up to me and said that the Rangers had to done that quite a few years ago and they explained what could be done. I thought it would be a fabulous idea and we just put the wheels in motion. Jason did an amazing job planning it, we have some team building activities, some people will come talk to our group about West Point and the dedication and commitment that is needed to be there. Should be a real great experience for our group.”
Jeff Gorton spoke with reporters following yesterday’s practice and said (NYR):
- On Dylan McIlrath, “I think so. I think that it’s been an evolution to his game. It has obviously taken a while for a big guy but he has played really well and done a lot of things we have asked him to do. For us, a 6-5 defensemen who plays the style he does and the way he does I think it’s a big asset for us.”
To read more of this story, click here
The Rangers confirmed today that they will star the season with 23 players, the maximum.
Alain Vigneault had said during training camp that he hoped to keep 8 defensemen, 13 forwards and two goalies but was unsure if the salary cap would allow that.
The Rangers are starting the season with 7 defensemen, 14 forwards and two goalies and will have $150,500 in salary cap space to start the season.
Putting Glass on waivers and sending him to Hartford would give the Rangers $1,100,500 in cap space. (Hockey’s Cap)
Alain Vigneault met with the media following practice today and said (NYR):
- On Dylan McIlrath, “there is definite strong performance from his point and he obviously, in our opinion really progressed from where he was last year. You want players to force your hand sometimes and Diaz did everything he expected and performed well and was very good on the PP but when we discussed it yesterday with the coaches and management we felt that Dylan deserved to start here with us and selfishly we are hoping Diaz will clear waivers and we will have good depth defensemen.”
To read more of this story, click here