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New York Rangers Sign NCAA Free Agent Brandon Scanlin

Chris Drury has made another move ahead of the trade deadline.

Minnesota Wild v New York Rangers Photo by Steven Ryan/Getty Images

The New York Rangers have signed college free agent Brandon Scanlin who most recently played defense for the University of Nebraska-Omaha.

Scanlin turns 23 in June and is your prototypical defenseman at 6’4” and 214 pounds, and broke out in a big way offensively this season. The Rangers newest prospect tallied 5 goals and 26 assists for 31 points over 60 games during his first two seasons with the Mavericks, and in 38 games this year posted a line of 6-25-31.

In terms of potential, Scanlin was ranked 4th on Chris Peters’ college free agent list, but that is with the caveat that he has some work to do.

From his report:

He has some good elements to his physical game and can be difficult to get around. I do have some concerns about his skating in terms of defending NHL speed, but I also think there are some appealing tools there that will entice a good number of offers.

This isn’t anything new for the Rangers, as they’ve acquired a number of prospects in recent years who had skating issues. In the case of Scanlin there is no immediate rush or pressure for him to turn into anything soon given the amount of prospects the Rangers have currently. Scanlin will have time to play in the AHL, or perhaps the ECHL, and if all goes to plan the Rangers will have another option within their system.

The Rangers like to be active in college free agency, and sometimes they are really lucky. It wasn’t all too long ago that they signed Neal Pionk, a player they ultimately used as an asset to acquire Jacob Trouba. I’m not saying that Scanlin’s going to have a similar impact, but it is good to stock the minors with options like him as opposed to veterans who are way past their prime.