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- So, not much going on in Rangers land, right? Derek Stepan still hasn't been re-signed (and we really don't know anything about his negotiations one way or another) and neither has Mats Zuccarello (although by all accounts Zuccarello seems to be closer than Stepan is on that front.
- The Rangers, meanwhile, probably don't want to play games with Stepan. He has more leverage than people think -- everyone knows he's going to be the number one center sooner rather than later -- especially since it's common knowledge the Rangers are most likely buying out Brad Richards this summer.
- Pretty interesting story on Blueshirts United a few days ago about the chemistry Chris Kreider, Stepan and Danny Kristo have from their time playing together on the World Juniors Squad a few years ago. From the story:
"We've known each other a long time, and still hang out during the summers, so it's pretty cool to have another buddy on the team," Stepan said of Kristo, who called the Rangers 2013 top scorer shortly after receiving word he'd been traded to New York for Christian Thomas.
So it would seem that no one with the Rangers would be as qualified as Stepan to provide a scouting report on the team's new winger. In fact, according to the Rangers Director of Player Personnel Gordie Clark, Rangers brass reached out to Stepan to find out more about Kristo.
"First of all, the guy just competes," explained Stepan. "He's got this compete level to him that's extremely high. He loves winning hockey games, loves being a part of winning teams. He's got great speed, and sees the ice extremely well. And obviously he can score goals."
That's a good read if you have some time and haven't already, check it out.
- I'm still maintaining Kristo makes a strong, strong push to make the team out of camp. The way the Rangers staff glows about him is telling. And the fact that he has instant chemistry with Stepan, Kreider and McDonagh helps, too.
- Also, the Rangers are going through the United States pipeline a lot of late, and it looks like one of the benefits is all these guys knowing each other as they come up. I don't know, I think it's cool.
Anyway, thoughts on this guys?