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Brassard out for Rangers tonight, McIlrath to make NHL debut

Dec 12, 2013, 11:53 AM EDT

WASHINGTON, DC - MAY 04: Derick Brassard #16 of the New York Rangers shoots the puck in overtime against the Washington Capitals in Game Two of the Eastern Conference Quarterfinals during the 2013 NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs at Verizon Center on May 4, 2013 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Greg Fiume/Getty Images) Getty Images

The New York Rangers will be sporting a new look tonight when they host Columbus at MSG.

Center Derick Brassard will miss his first game of the season — with a “sore posterior,” according to head coach Alain Vigneault — while rookie defenseman Dylan McIlrath will make his NHL debut.

McIlrath, 21, was the club’s first-round pick (1oth overall) at the 2010 NHL Entry Draft and has appeared in 23 games for the Wolf Pack this season, scoring three goals and seven points.

The towering defenseman (6-foot-5, 215 pounds) spent all of last year in the AHL but felt he had “a legitimate shot” of making the NHL this season. A tough, physical player that isn’t afraid to fight, McIlrath was dropped from the Rangers just prior to the end of training camp.

He was recalled yesterday.

Brassard, meanwhile, is considered day-to-day after taking a spill vs. Nashville on Tuesday. The 26-year-old has five goals and nine assists in 32 games this year.

In other Blueshirt lineup news, Justin Falk will be scratched so McIlrath can draw in, while Taylor Pyatt and Benoit Pouliot — both healthy scratches recently — will get back in the lineup.

  1. xdj511 - Dec 12, 2013 at 12:15 PM

    Well at least Brassard has the “sore tush” excuse instead of being humiliated as the latest healthy scratch.

    Pyatt and Pouliot back in. That says a lot about the state of our AHL forwards right there. Although I think we have to wait now to recall Miller after his latest demotion. It’s one thing if you don’t want him wasting away on the third or fourth line, but he should get a shot at taking over Cally’s minutes if he’s going to be out 4-6 weeks.

    But hey, what are the odds that one of those two (Pyatt and Pouliot) suddenly catch fire on their umpteenth chance to impress? Stranger things have happened, I guess.

    Good luck, Dylan McIlrath, I’ll be rooting for you. Please don’t overcommit to making any big hits and end up giving the Jackets any odd-man rushes. I can just imagine him being paired with MDZ and they both take themselves out of the play, MDZ on an ill-advised pinch, and McIlrath trying to throw a big hit.

    Go Rangers!

    • bronxtale247 - Dec 12, 2013 at 7:34 PM

      You were saying (Macllrath)

  2. stepanup - Dec 12, 2013 at 12:16 PM

    Seems like the entire team should be suffering from a “sore posterior” at this point. Can’t say Brassard will be missed much, he’s just another one of the floaters out there.

    While I’m not big on McIlrath’s game, he might be the kind of precense they need…maybe he’ll inspire…someone.

  3. banger60 - Dec 12, 2013 at 3:38 PM

    In my opinion the Rangers need alittle more toughness, good luck tonight! GO RANGERS!!!!!!!

  4. bronxtale247 - Dec 12, 2013 at 3:51 PM

    I really think Brassard had a legitimate star potential in him, I feel like he doesn’t want to be “the guy” He’s hands down our best puck handler and has the ability to create space and get a shot off…just seems scared or hesitant to do so. As for Dylan, I feel this is Sather’s way of trying to justify one of his many terrible first round picks. Conor Allen is way more polished and just a better defenseman in my opinion, but either way the last thing the rangers need is “thump” they need goal scorers!! With Cally hurt for 1-2months, no AHL scoring prospects, and the team under .500 don’t be surprised if Del Z or a Girardi get shipped out in a trade. FIRE SATHER!

    • xdj511 - Dec 12, 2013 at 4:05 PM

      For the rest of his career Sather will be forever stuck in Edmonton, 1979 mode. He thinks he can bring in all of these guys who have shown flashes of brilliance or veteran moxie along with a tough guy or two to protect the stars and build a winner, and it’s just not happening.

      I would have preferred to see Conor Allen too, but McIlrath is the bigger body and the higher draft pick, so he’s going to get the first shot.

  5. bronxtale247 - Dec 12, 2013 at 6:41 PM

    I couldn’t agree more. Sometimes with the change of the game and the new generation of players some of these older guys in higher positions are a little out of their league. The sad thing is Sather really carries himself as if he’s done and doing a great job, last time I looked Messier Gretzky and Graves are in the rafters not on the ice. He needs to wake up cause he’s been digging the Rangers in a deeeeep whole with his moves and drafts.

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