After his first morning skate as Rangers coach before Blueshirts opened their preseason Sunday night with a 4-0 loss to the islanders at Madison Square Garden, coach Gerard Gallant admitted that there are not really many jobs available on his team for young guys to win.
“There’s not much,” he said. “Yes, you know, every coach or manager says there are vacancies. There are always jobs available when people come up and take the job – and it’s all part of the game. But there’s not much. We hope that some good young players come and fight for the places and make the decisions really hard at the end of the day. ”
A young player who appears to have a spot reserved for him is striker Vitali Kravtsov, number 9 overall pick in 2018 and the first of three first-round picks Rangers had that year. However, Kravtsov, who spent most of the 2020-21 season playing in the KHL, came over to North America when that season ended and ended with the Rangers, playing 20 games and scoring two goals with two assists.
Rangers decided not to bring the 21-year-old to the rookie camp, as he reckoned he would be better off skating with the veterans in the informal, voluntary training before the regular training camp opened, as opposed to coming in with prospects and hopes. He started the preseason on Sunday on the right wing with center Filip Chytil and newcomer Barclay Goodrow, who have the appearance of a third line when the base game opens. However, Goodrow did not come out of the first period after being assessed for a major penalty kick for boarding and a game offense at. 13:49.
But, Gallant said, Kravtsov is not guaranteed anything.
“He must earn it,” Gallant said of Kravtsov. “It’s not about us giving him the opportunity, he has to earn it. And you know he’s a talented guy. He’s a guy that we expect to be a very important player for this year. He’s a of the guys you know, come and show us and do the best you can. Come to training camp in good shape like he did and work hard. ”
So far, Kravtsov is doing all these things. He worked hard on his shot in the summer and he has selected the brains of the veterans on the team to get tips and advice that can help him get better. On Saturday, after training, he worked with veteran manager Ryan Reaves on a few techniques on what to do if he is in a fight.
“Sometimes things can happen and you have to be ready,” Kravtsov said Sunday morning when asked why he took instruction from Reaves. “He (Reaves) is not always on the ice. Sometimes you have to do it yourself and you have to be ready.”
Notes and quotes: Nils Lundkvist, the third of Rangers’ first three rounds of elections in 2018, was also in the line-up, and played on defense, in partnership with the newcomer Patrik Nemeth. . . Alexandar Georgiev started in the net and allowed three goals on 15 shots. Adam Huska came on relief midway through the second period and stopped seven of eight shots. . . In the morning, Rangers sent Jayden Grubbe, Ryder Korczak, Evan Vierling, Dylan Garand and Talyn Boyko back to their respective junior teams and assigned Alex Whelan, Michael O’Leary, Jake Elmer, Patrick Khodorenko, James Sanchez, Zach Berzolla, Hunter Skinner and Zach Giuttari to AHL Hartford. That leaves 47 players in camp.
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