Found August 19, 2012 on The Prospect Park:
J.T. Miller (Plymouth Whalers) I am not going to fib about it but boy am I glad the New York Ranger prospects playing in the Canadian Junior are starting to report to their junior teams for training camp. At the same time it is also kind of sad too because while the kids will be playing, the adults will be once again risking damage to the sport if the NHL once again has a labor stoppage.

5 Ranger prospects will be reporting to Junior training camps in North America and if you thought last year was pretty good then wait until you see the encore.

J.T. Miller (2011 1st)- will at the very least report to the Plymouth Whaler's training camp next week when it opens up. Where he winds up spending the season is anyone's guess at this point in time.

If Miller plays in the OHL then get ready for a break out season from him. Miller has grown in size and from every report has improved his game in every area.

Miller will benefit from playing on a Whaler franchise that has made the OHL playoffs for the last 21 straight years. Miller will also be playing with 2 other players who were at the USA Hockey Summer Evaluation Camp with him in Stefan Noesen and Ryan Hartman.

The Rangers will reap the rewards of Miller playing for Coach Mike Vellucci for a 2nd year. If there is a lockout I think Miller will wind up being sent to the OHL rather than burn a year of his entry level contract.

Will it be the right call? This time I say no as Miller has blown me away with the improvements he made since last season.

St. Croix (Edmonton Oil Kings) Michael St. Croix (2011 4th)- So how exactly do you top a 40-65-105 season where you also won a WHL championship and played in the Memorial Cup? Well for the prospect I gave the nickname "The Predator" then I would remember that despite being one of the best scorers in the WHL that I didn't get invited to Hockey Canada's camps or teams.

I would also remember that I still haven't been offered a contract by the Rangers either so there remains plenty of incentive for the 2012-2013 season. Nobody seems to be talking about St. Croix and I think that is a mistake.

St. Croix last season showed major improvement on defense and has worked hard at getting stronger. Let us also remember that the Rangers are not going to forget that 18 of St. Croix's 40 goals last season were on the power play.

One thing that I very much remember from last season is that St. Croix also plays for Derek Laxdal who in my book is one of the best teachers in junior hockey. Derek Laxdal is going to turn St. Croix into a complete player just like Vellucci will do Miller.

McColgan (Kelowna Rockets) Shane McCogan (2011 5th)- It is a year of opportunity for McColgan after an off-season trade sent McColgan to the Saskatoon Blades after 3 full seasons with the Kelowna Rockets. Both McColgan and the Rockets had disappointing seasons in 2011-2012 as McColgan flat out did not show forward progress towards a Ranger contract.

Playing with the Saskatoon Blades is going to give McColgan some opportunities he would not have had if he remained in Kelowna. The first is that the Saskatoon Blades are the host team of the 2013 Memorial Cup which means McColgan will get a chance to play for the Memorial Cup.

McColgan won't have the weight of the franchise on his shoulders like he did in Kelowna as the Blades will have much more talent on their roster. The other and perhaps best (or worst) opportunity for McColgan is he will be playing for one of Glen Sather's old friends in Blade coach Lorne Molleken.

Noreau (Baie-Comeau) Samuel Noreau (2011 5th)- Noreau is already hard at work as his Baie-Comeau Drakkar started training camp last week and have played 2 exhibition games. As I said yesterday, Noreau has to grab his opportunity with a strong season or the Rangers won't offer him a contract NHL or AHL.

The Rangers really could use Noreau to develop into a contributing prospect given how what once was a deep pool of defenders is now needing bodies. You can't teach size and Noreau has plenty of it at 6'5.

What might make this season really interesting is would be if the Rangers wound up with 4 out of the 5 CHL prospects playing for the Memorial Cup. McColgan and St. Croix out of the WHL, Miller from the OHL and Noreau from the QMJHL.

Ceresnak (Peterborough Petes) Peter Ceresnak (2011 6th) - Ceresnak like Noreau is one of the Ranger's "project" prospects on the blueline. At 6'4 205, the blueliner came over from Slovakia last season to play for the Peterborough Petes.

It was a season of mixed results for Ceresnak last year as he got off to a good start with the Petes but the Petes were hurt by injuries and other issues which hurt Ceresnak indirectly. Ceresnak was a reliable defender but wasn't ready for top pair duty.

As the season wore on, Ceresnak "disappeared" as he went 4-6-10 for the Petes in the 1st half of the season but just 2-3-5 in the 2nd. Playing for former Ranger assistant coach Mike Pelino should be an advantage for Ceresnak but only if he grabs for it.

Ceresnak is eligible to play in the AHL but it would take a miracle of a training camp (if he is even invited) for that to happen.

Christian Thomas (2010 2nd)
is eligible to play in the OHL as an overage player if the Rangers decide not to burn a year of his entry level contract. It is not something that should happen but because of the possible lockout it is a possibility.


Rangers "Not Close" to Deal with Del Zotto; Sauer Update

While the NHL and NHLPA are in a CBA dispute that will jeopardize the 2012-13 season, the New York Rangers have some "disputes" themselves that they are dealing with in their own camp. Number one on the list is concerning Group II restricted free agent Michael Del Zotto. The 22-year-old defenseman, who recorded ten goals and 41 points in 77 games last season, is still without...

Rangers Will Remain the NHL's Target Next Season

On January 21, 2012, the New York Rangers gave notice to the rest of the NHL that they had arrived. Just three weeks prior in the Winter Classic, the Atlantic Division was alerted that the Blueshirts were a legitimate contender and not going away anytime soon, as they took down the Flyers to continue their unbeaten streak against their Philadelphia foes for the season. But it was...

Hello Hockey I have missed you

Noreau (NYR) The 2012-2013 New York Ranger prospect season got underway on Friday evening when Samuel Noreau (2011 5th) made his season debut for his Baie-Comeau Drakkar as the Drakkar defeated the Chicoutimi Saguenéens 6-1 in their preseason home opener. It is an important season for Noreau who is in the 2nd year of his draft status with the Rangers and needs a big year to earn...

Rangers/Del Zotto Far Apart; Sauer Feeling Better

Larry Brooks at the New York Post reports that the Rangers and Michael Del Zotto (RFA) are not close to striking a deal.Brooks adds that Negotiations are expected to intensify over the next couple of weeks.The Blueshirts are believed to be offering a multi-year deal in the neighborhood of $2.2 million to $2.5 million per season.Del Zotto's last contract paid him $1.087 million...

The pros and cons of a “super” line

In an attempt to take our minds off of the inevitable lockout, let’s turn our focus to the Rick Nash acquisition and if he will play with Brad Richards and Marian Gaborik. The concept of a “super” line with these three sure is enticing. After all, it worked in Ottawa with Daniel Alfredsson, Jason Spezza, and Dany Heatly. It has worked in the past with Sidney Crosby, Evgeny...

Michael Sauer Still Not Cleared For Rangers Return Even If Season Is Delayed

The New York Rangers have had a fairly impressive offseason, finally landing Rick Nash in a trade with the Columbus Blue Jackets and re-signing many of their top players from last year’s squad that reached the Eastern Conference Finals. While they are hopeful that negotiations will go well with Michael Del Zotto over the next couple of weeks, the Rangers know that...

Gaborik, Lundqvist Would Benefit From a Lockout Shortened Season

Michael Rappaport of The Hockey Writers highlights the pros and cons of what a lockout could do for the New York Rangers, ranging from individual performances to team play suffering. He mentions Marian Gaborik and Henrik Lundqvist as the biggest benefactors of a shorter season.Not only would a shortened season give Gaborik the opportunity to play in a larger percentage of the Rangers...

Jan Levine: MDZ and Rangers Far Apart, Sauer Not Close to Returning

Larry Brooks, in his final Slap Shot column of the summer, had two vignettes about the Rangers, neither of which was particularly good news. I will quote both pieces with my view below in italics as we step away from Labor negotiations for a minute or two. Michael Del Zotto: The gulf between the Rangers and unsigned Group II free agent Michael Del Zotto may not be quite as wide...

Rangers the favorites in the East? Rangers General Manager Glen Sather made the move that all the Rangers fans wanted to see this off-season, an elite scorer in a Rangers sweater. With the acquisition of Rick Nash from the Columbus Blue Jackets, the Rangers bulked up an offense that was less than stellar last season. The cost to bring Nash to the Rangers was Brandon Dubinsky, Artem Anisimov...

Yahoo! Sports' Series "The Essentials" Covers the Rangers

Puck Daddy's series "The Essentials" over at Yahoo! Sports looks at all you need to know about the New York Rangers, from the essential chant (Potvin sucks!), essential game to even the essential player in frachise history which sparked some debate.Player: Mark MessierThis one was hotly contested. Some said Messier, others said Rod Gilbert. Gilbert is definitely worthy...

CT Whale Schedule Announced

Since it's becoming more and more likely that the NHL is headed towards a lockout, we better start acclimating ourselves with the CT Whale. And you can start with their schedule which was released yesterday......Wade Redden? Wade Redden? Seriously guys? about putting a promising prospect on there like Hrivik, Bourque or Thomas.Remember to follow me on Twitter & Facebook...

Greenville Road Warriors Road Warriors Renew Affiliation Agreement with the New York Rangers GREENVILLE, SC- The Greenville Road Warriors announced today that they have renewed their affiliation agreement with the NHL’s New York Rangers. The 2012-13 season will be the third straight year the Road Warriors and Rangers have partnered. “We are excited to continue our...
Today's Best Stuff
For Bloggers

Join the Yardbarker Network for more promotion, traffic, and money.

Company Info
What is Yardbarker?

Yardbarker is the largest network of sports blogs and pro athlete blogs on the web. This site is the hub of the Yardbarker Network, where our editors and algorithms curate the best sports content from our network and beyond.