According to the NY Post, 20-year-old Connecticut Whale forward Marek Hrivik is gaining interest from NHL clubs, including the New York Rangers. Hrivik joined the Whale on an Amateur Tryout (ATO) agreement on March 30, and made his pro debut the next day in a game against the Adirondack Phantoms.
Hrivik appeared in eight regular-season games with the Whale, scoring a goal and totaling 19 shots while playing on a line with Casey Wellman and fellow rookie Steve Moses. Hrivik was a first-round playoff hero for the Whale, scoring four goals in three games against the Bridgeport Sound Tigers. He leads the Whale in playoff goals and is tied for the team lead in points entering round 2.
The Slovakian-winger played three seasons in the QMJHL with the Moncton Wildcats before joining the Whale, and he amassed 93 goals, 111 assists and 204 points in 179 games played with Moncton. Hrivik has already attended two NHL training camps, but has yet to sign a deal. In 2010, Hrivik was invited to the Columbus Blue Jackets’ camp, and in 2011 he received an invite from the Phoenix Coyotes.
Hrivik possesses an abundance of skills, including his speed, strength, quick-release, and hockey sense in all zones. Hrivik’s size is a bonus, as the winger skates at 6-foot-2, 197-pounds. The second-round of the playoffs begins Wednesday for the Whale when it visits the Norfolk Admirals for game 1, and Hrivik may play an important role in Connecticut’s quest for the Calder Cup.
Another Whale rookie that the Rangers, among other NHL clubs, have interest in is 5-foot-9, 175-pound, forward Jonathan Audy-Marchessault. The Rangers invited Audy-Marchessault to training camp last September, and his performance with the Whale this season is proof as to why teams are interested in the talented forward.
Audy-Marchessault, 21, finished the season as the only Whale skater to appear in all 76 regular-season games. He finished the year tied for first on the team in scoring, with 24 goals (second on the team), 40 assists (team leader) and 64 points. During the first-round of the playoffs, Audy-Marchessault recorded a goal and a team-leading 16 shots in three games.
Before joining the Whale on a Standard Player (AHL) Contract this summer, Audy-Marchessault spent four seasons in the QMJHL with the Quebec Remparts. He totaled 98 goals, 141 assists and 239 points in 254 games with Quebec.
Follow me on twitter for more Whale playoff coverage @NickPerri_SNYRB
Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.