Tracking the Wolf Pack: The Good, the Bad and the Ugly
With the New York Rangers The inconsistent play this season has been hogging all the spotlight, so we decided to take a step back and check out the baby Rangers. Let’s take a short trip down the Merritt Parkway to good old Hartford, Connecticut, home of the Hartford Wolf Pack, and talk about what we see.
On a full note, for anyone planning to go to a Wolf Pack game, I would make sure your itinerary takes you to the Constitution State on a Friday night for $2 beers and $1 hot dogs at Center XL.
While the team may be struggling this season, it would be remiss not to reflect on the fact that all of the Rangers’ prospects are getting some serious development time. From Matthew Robertson to Karl Henriksson, players are getting minutes in a professional North American hockey environment and that’s nothing but good for the organization.
Some of the main ones to mention are Will Cuylle, who has been an incredibly committed player with the team. With a stat line of 2 goals and 3 assists in 12 games, his production can be overlooked, but he’s been deep and played a physically imposing game in a man-heavy league. This will be his first full pro season and it’s an incredibly important step for him to get more and more acclimated. Another key player is Dylan Garand. have only won the CHL Goaltender of the Year award, great things are expected of this young goalkeeper. With a 3.36 GAA and .892 SV%, his game hasn’t been spectacular, but if you’ve had a chance to watch him play, he’s made some remarkable saves that were only possible because of his raw athleticism, delving a little deeper. most of the time the team hangs it out to dry. With a little more development, Garand could have a future in New York as Igor’s next backup.
the bad guy
Where do we start? Currently the team is in 4-4-1-3, not good. However, it still only counts as bad just for the context that they are only twelve games into the season. Although they sit in last place in the Atlantic Division and only the top six teams in the division make the playoffs, they have two games in hand on many of their division rivals and a point or two in each of their games it places them back in the rankings. race for a playoff spot.
No one on the team is flourishing offensively. The team is struggling to score simply. Lauri Pajuniemi leads the team with five goals, and while he’s showing he has one hell of a shot, five goals in twelve games isn’t exactly known as a dominant performance. Jonny Brodzinski leads the team with eight points in twelve games. There is no Wolf Pack player in the top 100 scorers in the AHL as it currently stands.
The Wolfpack’s special teams are doing pretty bad. Their power play, 17.6%, and 80.4% of penalties, are the second worst in their division. So far this year they have only scored 9 power play goals while leading their division with the most goals against with 3, not a good look. In addition, they have the highest goal-against ratio in their division. So breaking it down they are scoring very little and scoring too much in every situation.
Some players’ development has stalled a lot or progressed nowhere as planned. One of those players, Ryder Korczak, was just sent back to the WHL for a senior season with the Moose Jaw Warriors. Ryder was struggling to make an impact and often wasn’t dressed to play for it. He had zero points in five games played.
Another player with difficulties is Karl Henriksson. This is a very big year for Henriksson, there have been many doubts about his ability or potential to ever make it to the big leagues and this year was a great opportunity for him to prove that he belonged. Unfortunately, he has played eleven games this season and has been invisible for most of it. The first year in the AHL can be a bit of a transition for players, but he has yet to record a single point and more is needed from the Rangers’ 2019 second-round pick.
Last but not least, the Wolfpack have the most overtime losses in their division. Losing once in OT and three times in the shootout, something is wrong with the team. While we try to be objective, I feel like it’s their lack of dynamic talent. Other teams have star players or players who are at least discovering it, and the Wolf Pack’s start this year has been slow and unproductive. The roster is full of free agent signings with the Rangers often emphasizing things like size and taking flyers on tall defensemen, that’s not a good model for building a good team. Hopefully their potential experts can turn around and find some way to dig in and add a few Ws in the coming weeks.
#Tracking #Wolf #Pack #Good #Bad #Ugly