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Rangers Sign AHL Defenseman Michael Paliotta

NHL: Preseason-St. Louis Blues at Columbus Blue Jackets Russell LaBounty-USA TODAY Sports

Defenseman Michael Paliotta will be one of the new faces in Hartford next season.

Here is his “talent analysis” from

Paliotta is a physical blueliner with good size and skating ability. Drafted as a shutdown defenseman, he blossomed as an offensive defenseman during his college career. Paliotta played a key role in the resurgence of the University of Vermont hockey program and has continued to provide offense in the AHL.

Paliotta was a third round pick (70th overall) of the Chicago Blackhawks in 2011. Paliotta was the captain of the University of Vermont in his senior year (2014-15). He put up 36 points in 41 games from the blue line in that final year of NCAA hockey.

Last season was his first in the AHL. He had 23 points and 29 PIM in 68 games with the Lake Erie Monsters. He won the Calder Cup with Lake Erie and appeared in 8 playoff games for Columbus’ AHL affiliate team.

The former Blackhawk and Blue Jacket prospect (he was acquired in the Brandon Saad trade) was not given a qualifying offer by Columbus which made him an unrestricted free agent yesterday. The Rangers signed him on a one-year deal for a $600,000 NHL salary and a $70,000 AHL salary. He will be a restricted free agent at the end of the 2016-17 season.

At 6’3” Paliotta has good size for a defenseman. He’s a right-handed shot. He’s also a local kid- he was born in Connecticut.

He can also teach you how to shoot a hockey puck: