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.”
“Aaron Johnson could come as a call up and give us good minutes. We are trying to get them all to maximize their capabilities. Not all will be Rangers, not all will be in the NHL but we are doing everything we can to maximize their potential.”
On Cam Talbot, “No…Cam came to us out of college, he wasn’t a junior so we didn’t draft him at 18 years old and start the development process, that process started a little late but he was a good athlete. Ben Allaire recognized that right away and then he learned to be a diligent hard worker. Now you have a big goalie, who is in good condition and a great athelete, he has the leg strength to go post to post, the vision to pick up pucks int he crowd and all the requirements to be a goalie. Year after year he has learned how to work and he has a good example in Lundqvist. There aren’t many goalies who work as hard as Henrik Lundqvist, if any. He had a great model to follow. Did we expect Cam to do what he did in his first 5-6 games, no…no we didn’t. Will he be able to continue, we hope so, we will see but we do know that it wasn’t a one game flash in the pan. It’s a big enough body of work to know that we have something special here. Ben will continue to work with him. Ben will keep enhancing that athleticism, working on his technique so that on the nights where you don’t feel athletic, you have some of those nights, your technique will be there and blocking it. You may not making fancy saves, bu the puck is still in front of you. You don’t always have to make the save, you just need to have the puck hit you. It will be interesting to see how Cam does continue his development.”