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New York Rangers News: Emerson Etem to Debut Tonight, Fast and Boyle Return

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Tanner Glass, Jarret Stoll, and Dylan McIlrath are healthy scratches and Etem will make his Rangers' regular season debut tonight.

Bruce Bennett/Getty Images

From Andrew Gross' twitter feed:

As predicted, Jarret Stoll, Tanner Glass and Dylan McIlrath the extras shooting on backup goalie Antti Raanta here at Bell Centre.

So, as predicted, fourth line tonight is Emerson Etem-Dominic Moore-Jesper Fast your Rangers' fourth line tonight.

Stoll said he had a "good chat" with AV, understands situation, good chance for Etem to play. Still adjusting to new team, playing wing

-@AGrossRecord, Andrew Gross

The Rangers' lineup certainly is getting a pretty significant shake-up after Tuesday night's 4-1 home loss against the Blue Jackets. Jarret Stoll will be a healthy scratch for the first time this season and Dylan McIlrath and Tanner Glass will be watching Montreal's home opener tonight in suits. Dan Boyle and Jesper Fast will return to the lineup for the Rangers after Boyle was a healthy scratch on Tuesday and Fast was out of the lineup for the last games.

Rick Nash - Derick Brassard - Mats Zuccarello
Chris Kreider - Derek Stepan - Kevin Hayes

J.T. Miller - Oscar Lindberg - Viktor Stalberg
Emerson Etem - Dominic Moore - Jesper Fast

The big news tonight, other than Glass being a healthy scratch, is that this will be Emerson Etem's first game as a New York Ranger. Etem had an underwhelming preseason with the Rangers. In five appearances with the Blueshirts he registered eight shots, picked up a minor penalty, and failed to score a point in 74:43 TOI. However, he offers the Rangers an interesting combination of size, speed, and skill that should be a welcome addition to the bottom six forward group.

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Etem has been compared more than a few times to J.T. Miller on this blog and by other hockey analysts because of the offensive upside in the young American forward's game that comes hand-in-hand with some disturbing defensive shortcomings. We saw Etem trying to do too much a few times in the preseason which led to some turnovers, including a memorable one right in front of the Rangers' net that resulted in a goal. If Etem wants to stay in the lineup after tonight he's going to have to be smart with the puck in all three zones and play a simple, clean game while getting pucks to the net.

Jesper Fast should never have been taken out of the Rangers' lineup in the first place given how exceptional he is at penalty killing and his exemplary two-way play. A line of Etem, Moore, and Fast is indescribably better than a line of Glass, Moore, and Stoll. Moore, who has been struggling to do what he can with Stoll and Glass on his wings, will get to enjoy a more offensively-gifted set of wingers tonight against the Habs. Dominic Moore and Jesper Fast are more than capable of making up for the defensive shortcomings of Etem if the Rangers deploy their fourth line appropriately against the speedy Canadiens tonight.

Thanks for reading. Thoughts on Etem coming in tonight?