The New York Rangers have their own third round draft pick, the 80th overall selection. At this point in the Draft, the Rangers might want to address other needs as well as continuing their pursuit of offense. For the first time, I have listed a goaltender and a defenseman.

While the Rangers have a surplus of puck-moving defenseman, the blueliner that I am looking at would bring size and a physical presence to the organization.

As for goaltending, the picture is a little murkier. Former 2nd round draft pick Antoine LaFleur has been a bit of a disappointment while playing with a subpar QMJHL team. It is possible the Rangers might not even sign him to a professional contract or they might look to sign him to an AHL contract. It is uncertain if Hartford netminders Miika Wiikman and Matt Zaba are bona fide prospects, or are they just AHL-level goalies who would be part-time NHL backups at best.

Dan Delisle – C/LW – (6-4/222)
CS: # 138NA —– THN: # Not Rated in Top 100 —– McK: # Not Rated
ISS: # 57 (Keith Primeau) —– RLR: # 106 (Bryan Bickell or Chad Kilger)
ISS: “Quick hands with quick shot. His size and speed will make him an attractive player for a mid-late pick. His offensive skills are very explosive. His vision and playmaking skills are already at a high level. Defensively he is aggressive and creates turnover by being an agitator and supporting the defense low in his own zone. Danny has committed to the University of Minnesota-Duluth.
McK: No report available.
RLR: “Huge strong power winger is very strong in front of the net. Able to just physically dominate at the high school level. His puck skills and vision are just fair. Has great size but his body has some catching up to do – grew too quick and needs to gain coordination that would help with quickness and lateral agility. Didn’t play with a whole lot of talent so he carried a lot on himself.
2008/2009 – Totino Grace High School (MN) 24-30-22-52-14. Will attend the University of Minnesota-Duluth.

Taylor Doherty – D- (6-6/218)
CS: # 58NA —– THN: # 94 —– McK: # 79
ISS: # 52 (Ulf Samuelsson) —– RLR: # 113 (Not Available)
TSN: Honorable Mention (Not Rated)
ISS: “Huge Player with good long reach. Puck skills are just average, but does work hard. “A big player who has a physical presence when he is on the ice, has had the opportunity to play in all situations with the Kingston Frontenacs. Doherty gets around the ice fairly well considering his size. During battles, particularly in the defensive zone, ends up taking minor penalties due to poor defending technique. Lots of potential with this young rearguard who already has extensive international experience.
McK: “Doherty is the most noticeable player on the ice for his huge frame but he has had a lot of difficulty maneuvering it on the ice. His skating is decent considering his size but he lacks hockey sense and will make a lot of questionable decisions with the puck. He has an uphill battle but his size and brute strength are calling cards that will invariably get him noticed by NHL scouts.
RLR: No report available.
TSN Notes: “Selected to participate in the 2009 CHL Top Prospects Game. As a member of Team Canada he won a gold medal at the 2008 Ivan Hlinka Memorial tournament and participated in the 2009 Under-18 World Championships. Doherty was also on the Team Ontario that won a gold medal at the 2008 Under-17 World Hockey Challenge.”
2008/2009 – Kingston (OHL) – 68-2-18-20-140

Brandon Maxwell – G – (6-0/195)
CS: # 8NA Goalie —– THN: # 79 —– McK: # Honorable Mention
ISS: # 8 Goalie (Not Available) —– RLR: # Not Rated (Not Available)
No Scouting reports available.
Maxwell played for the Under-18 Bronze medalist USA team in World Junior Championship. He originally committed to Boston College, but appears to be ready to play for the Windsor Spitfires (OHL). Maxwell is an athletic goalie with good size, technically sound and very quick. He has been coached by Francois Allaire, brother of Rangers goalie coach Benoit Allaire, and current goaltending coach for the Toronto Maple Leafs. Maxwell was born in Florida and raised in Canada, and the dual citizen chose to play for the USNTDP.
2008/2009 – USA U-18 (NTDP) – 22 GP – 3.27 GAA – .887 SV% – 1 SHO.

Andrej Nestrasil – RW – (6-2/200)
CS: # 131NA —– THN: # N/R in Top 100 —– McK: # 88
ISS: # 75 (Not Available) —– RLR: # 63 (Daniel Paille)
ISS: “skilled winger with good size and scoring ability. He does an excellent job of protecting the puck and shows very good hands in tight places. He took time to get comfortable with his new environment, but has consistently shown improvement in his play. Was the best player for the Czech’s at the recent World U-18’s. Skating does need work, but he does show some potential for improvement.
McK: “His playmaking ability elevated on the PP where he patrolled along the half-wall and in the corners. He is comfortable with the puck and does a nice job of surveying the ice and dispensing crisp passes. Nestrasil uses his strong hockey sense defensively by getting his stick in passing lanes. He is an effective penalty killer and doesn’t sacrifice defence for offense.”
RLR: “Has the size, soft hands, and excellent vision to become a fine playmaking winger. Adapted well to the North American game and became more physical in the corners as the season progressed – uses his size effectively to win battles and compete for loose pucks. Lacks explosion, but has power in stride. Makes up for his average skating by keeping feet moving in traffic and working hard. Defensively responsible and understands the game in all three zones.
2008/2009 – Victoriaville (QMJHL) – 66-22-35-57-67

Anton Rodin – RW/LW (5-11/174)
CS: # 15E —– THN: # N/R in Top 100 —– McK: # 65
ISS: # 79 (Not Available) —– RLR: # 82 (Matthew Lombardi)
ISS: “Rodin has proven to be an effective scorer, and can score unbelievable goals on a regular basis. He is a tremendous puck handler. His outstanding play on the International scene coupled with the fact he elevated his game throughout the year has secured his ranking here at ISS.
McK: “Rodin will be well-suited for the North American game given his tough and hard-working brand of hockey. Although small in stature, Rodin plays a fearless and energetic style. Rodin has speed to burn with great a skating stride. He has a great shot with terrific individual puck skills and can dangle. While he will go hard into the traffic areas, he will need to add some considerable muscle to withstand the rigors of the NHL.
RLR: “Came on like gangbusters during the season and his development curve is definitely heading straight upward. Though not big, he likes initiating physical contact. Good instincts for getting to the right spot offensively.”
2008/2009 – Brynas Jr. (Sweden) – 37-29-26-55-34

Making the decision on the third round selection is difficult because of three reasons. First off, by the time we get the 80th pick in the Draft, it is possible none of these players will be available. The second problem is that I have introduced a defenseman and a goaltender to the equation. The final problem is that the Rangers do not have their own fourth round draft pick. As a result, they must make sure they get it right at #80.

In the past, we have seen Glen Sather move up and down in the draft as he replaces dealt away draft picks. Fans have to hope that Sather is able to read the Draft board and recoup his fourth round pick. If he doesn’t, I would have to list Taylor Doherty as the fifth pick because he is a reach I am not ready to take without a fourth round pick to back me up. If Sather gets a fourth rounder, and Doherty is available, I would draft him.

With the remaining players, it comes down to reading the Draft. If there has been a run on goalies, then the pick would be Brandon Maxwell or another goaltender that is high on the Rangers Draft board.

If the pick is going to be a forward, I would look at, in order, Anton Rodin, Andrej Nestrasil and Dan Delisle. Push comes to shove; Rodin is first ahead of Maxwell – if there is a gun to my head.

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