Originally posted on NY Rangers Blog  |  Last updated 5/30/14
The New York Rangers have signed 2013 6th round pick Mackenzie Skapski to an Entry-Level Contract, according to… Mackenzie Skapski. Skapski, who turns 20 in June, came with virtually no fanfare when the Rangers scooped him up at the 2013 Entry Draft, but has since put himself very much on the radar. After a shaky start to the season which included many inconsistent performances and a leg injury that shelved him for a couple of weeks, Skapski was mostly lights out the rest of the way. Playing behind arguably the worst defense in the Western Hockey League in Kootenay, Skapski finished the season with a 2.70 Goals Against Average and a .916 Save Percentage; two points higher than top goaltending prospect Tristan Jarry’s .914 Save Percentage despite playing on a significantly inferior team. In truth, The Kootenay Ice, finishing sixth in their conference and advancing into the second round of the WHL playoffs, probably overachieved this season, and Skapski was as big of a reason for that as anyone. Things got a bit bumpy for him in the playoffs, but altogether it was an eye-opening season for a guy who was largely an afterthought in junior hockey a year before. As for the kind of player Skapski is, I do not pretend to be a goaltending guru. That being said, here is what I have come to notice. His best asset is his head and fundamentals. He is athletic for sure, but it’s his understanding of the position that allows him to read angles well and set himself quickly. He’s very good at utilizing his large frame to cover the net and give shooters a very difficult time finding twine to shoot at. This is evident in the fact that his shootout statistics are as good as any you’re going to find in juniors. You won’t find him out of position often. He’s got a very sharp glove hand and can make some spectacular saves. Mentally, he’s similar to Henrik Lundqvist in that he’s passionate about his job and overly analytical about every little thing to the point that it’s borderline psychotic. As for areas of improvement, like any young goaltender pretty much everything can be improved upon. Specifically, he could use some work in detecting shots through traffic. It seemed to me that this is how many teams, who realized that he doesn’t make many mistakes on shots he can see, successfully exploited him at times. To a large extent a better team in front of him would have mitigated that, but it’s still something I envision Rangers’ goaltending coach Benoit Allaire will focus on. Skapski is eligible to return to the WHL for an overage season but I’ll be absolutely stunned if he’s not playing pro hockey next fall. Whether that’s in the ECHL with Greenville or the AHL with Hartford remains to be seen. In any case, the Rangers have specified that they see Skapski as an “A+ Prospect.” He’s a goaltender that Allaire likes a lot and, in 2-4 years, could push himself into the NHL level depending on the state of the Rangers’ goaltending at the time. Here’s an interview I did with him back in the Fall. Below is a highlight video of arguably his best game of the season against the Prince George Cougars.   Follow Me On Twitter: @Herman_NYRBlog Email Me: AdamNYRBlog@gmail.com
GET THE YARDBARKER APP:
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

WATCH: Dwight Howard ejected for hanging on rim

NHL rumors: Capitals acquire Blues’ Kevin Shattenkirk in bold trade

Report: Chiefs making ‘strong push’ to make Eric Berry highest-paid safety in NFL

Dana White hints at Conor McGregor's next opponent

Report: Steelers make Brown NFL's highest-paid WR

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Report: Chiefs sign Duvernay-Tardif to five-year extension

MLB considering introducing 'stickier' baseballs

Report: Browns have discussed trading No. 12 pick for Garoppolo

Report: Lowry expected to miss 4-5 weeks, return for playoffs

Report: Cowboys to release Romo in coming weeks

Report: Jennings expected to sign with Hornets

It's time for Satchel Paige Day in Major League Baseball

The best sports movies available to stream right now

Biggest surprises and disappointments of the NBA season

Top 10 shortstops in baseball for 2017

The most dangerous NBA teams flying under the radar

Eat, Drink, Watch: Your award-worthy weekend planning guide

Grading the NBA trade deadline on the Vince Carter scale

As NHL trade deadline nears, seven teams who could be dealing

Box Score 2/24: A night of NBA disrespect

The 'Pete Rose instead of Kareem? Surely, you can't be serious' quiz

Streaming sports docuseries you don't want to miss

Teams that can prevent a Cavs-Warriors NBA Finals three-peat

Rangers News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
the YARDBARKER app
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

It's time for Satchel Paige Day in MLB

The best sports movies available to stream right now

Biggest surprises and disappointments of the NBA season

As NHL trade deadline nears, seven teams who could be dealing

QUIZ: Name every MLB pitcher to win 20 or more games in a season since 2000

Top 10 shortstops in baseball for 2017

The most dangerous NBA teams flying under the radar

Grading the NBA trade deadline on the Vince Carter scale

Eat, Drink, Watch: Your award-worthy weekend planning guide

Streaming sports docuseries you don't want to miss

Today's Best Stuff
For Publishers
Company Info
Help
Follow Yardbarker