Hey folks. We're three days away from the season opener. The Rangers didn't practice yesterday, but there's still a few stories of note, team and league related.
Darroll Powe, Stu Bickel, and Brandon Mashinter all cleared waivers, and will be assigned to Hartford. [Rangers Rants] Alain Vigneault said making the final rounds of roster cuts was tough, especially making the decision on Powe whom he feared wouldn't clear waivers. But keeping these three guys is more important than most might think. This is a team already entering the season down two top-6 forwards in Ryan Callahan and Carl Hagelin. Organizational depth can be very key when injuries hit, so having second and third options to plug in a hole can turn out to be huge in the long run.
The big transaction news over the weekend was the team's decision to send Chris Kreider back to Hartford. Yesterday, it was announced Michael St. Croix will be assigned to Greenville of the ECHL. [HartfordWolfpack.com] St. Croix, who was selected in the fourth round by the Rangers in 2011, certainly seemed like a candidate to hang around and play in the AHL this year.
With three days until puck drop, it's prediction time! [BlueShirt Banter]
While the Rangers get things started on Thursday, the puck officially drops for the NHL regular season tonight. To get you ready, SB Nation has thrown together a comprehensive preview that has everything you need to know. Seriously, it's a great read for any hockey fan. [SB Nation]
In other league-wide news, rule changes for the 2013-2014 season were officially announced yesterday, the biggest being that the league will use hybrid icing this season. [NHL.com]