2015 IIHF World Junior Championship:
The 2015 IIHF World Junior Championship concluded yesterday, Jan. 5, as Team Canada defeated Team Russia, 5-4, in the Gold Medal Game. Three Rangers prospects (Anthony Duclair, Pavel Buchnevich, and Igor Shesterkin) captured a medal in the tournament, the first time three Rangers prospects earned a medal in one year at the World Junior Championship since Derek Stepan, Chris Kreider, and Ryan Bourque all won a gold medal with Team USA in 2010.
1.?? Cristoval Nieves, C, University of Michigan (NCAA) ? Nieves tied single-game collegiate career-highs with two goals and three points, and registered two power play points (one goal, one assist) in Michigan?s 6-0 victory over RPI on November 29. He has tallied a point in eight of his last 10 games (four goals, six assists), and six of his last seven games (four goals, four assists over the span).
EMERGING FROM THE PACKThe Rangers? American Hockey League (AHL) affiliate, the Hartford Wolf Pack, opened its 2014-15 season on Sunday afternoon against the Syracuse Crunch. Oscar Lindberg registered two goals, including the game-winning goal in overtime, as the Wolf Pack defeated Syracuse, 4-3.
- WATCH the Wolf Pack goals, HERE.
- On taking goalies,"it was one of the first years, we don't want to take anybody if we feel that they are just going to be a back up someday, it has to be a number one and it's really been the first year where we felt that there were 4-5 of them so in the end it was the best player available. They are 4-5-6 years away from being at the NHL level and that fits in pretty good for us."
- Are any picks close, "for the NHL, no. We have a couple of 94 kids, Nejezchleb is a very skilled Czech kid who has been playing in Brandon and playing a very gritty game out there, was one of the leading scorers on their team and he is closer to, lets say, turning pro. Walcott is older and an offensive D but he would be looking at an overage year in Junior but this was actually his first year in junior, he came out of nowhere."
- On Walcott, "he played longer in high school. It was up and down for him but our guys stayed on him and at that point we were looking for some skill. We get a left shot and a right shot and some high skill. Nanne is a high skill right shot defenseman."
- On Keegan Iverson, "I know that we come here every year and I say that I didn't expect him to be there. With the way the game is going you hear every new GM say that they want to get bigger and faster and play that heavy style and that is the game that he plays. A real thick kid. They had a good team, like five highly skilled players that got most of the ice time and I think that with more ice time this year his numbers will go up."
- Any surprises, "it was surprising because it was all over the place. That is what we predicted, it was why in the end, there were probably other players to take there but we felt that the best player to take was Shestyorkin, a very high end goalie. That is why we did it as early as the fifth."
- "Mantha is a big right handed, has a bomb from the point, can move it really well and all those guys, we had him ahead of other guys and that is how it flies. It was all over the place until we stopped there in the fifth, I was ready, I started with five and ended up with seven and I didn't think I would go that far but it was the right time because it was going that way and getting an extra pick to get guys that we didn't think we would get.
Walcott, a defenseman, is 5-11, 175 and from the QMJHL and was ranked 153 by Future Considerations. Ranked 102 by Central Scouting and had 10 goals and 29 assists last season with 71 PIM.
Nanne, a defenseman, is 5-10, 170, from Minnesota and the grandson of former coach and GM of the Minnesota North Stars, Lou Nanne. Lou Nanne is a long-time friend of Glen Sather, "best buds". Tyler was ranked 201 by Future Considerations and had 7 goals and 20 assists this season for Edina High School. Ranked 118 by Central Scouting.