NY Rangers logoThe New York Rangers and Connecticut Whale have some players that will be coming and at least one who will be going.

Wednesday the Rangers announced that 2010 first round (10th overall) pick, defenseman Dylan McIlrath, ahs been signed to three-year entry level contract.

The Blueshirts also announced that Ray Bourque’s son, Ryan, a third round pick, 80th overall, in the 2009 NHL Entry Draft has also been signed.

Both players are expected to be signed to a Professional or Amateur Try-Out contract with the Whale and will take part in the playoff push.

With the signing of McIlrath, and likely the improving health of Jyri Niemi and Michael Del Zotto, Lee Baldwin has been sent to the ECHL to rejoin the Greenville Road Warriors.

It remains to be seen if and when McIlrath and Bourque are assigned to the Whale. Both would help a great deal with the talent level of the Whale which has been suspect, especially of late.

Here are the two releases:


New York, March 14, 2011 – New York Rangers President and General Manager Glen Sather announced today that the club has agreed to terms with forward Ryan Bourque.

Bourque, 20, is a two-time medalist at the World Junior Championship as a member of the United States U-20 team, including a gold medal in the 2010 tournament and a bronze medal in the 2011 tournament.

This season, Bourque has skated in 47 games with the Quebec Remparts of the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League (QMJHL), registering 26 goals and 31 assists for 57 points, along with 15 penalty minutes and a plus-14 rating in 47 games.  He has established career-highs in games played, goals, assists, points, and power play goals (six).  Bourque ranks third on the team in goals, points and points per game average (1.21).  He has posted a career-high, 16 multi-point performances, and tied his career-high with a four-point effort (two goals, two assists) on November 13 at Prince Edward Island.  Bourque registered at least one point in 27 of his first 32 games to begin the season, recording 45 points (23 goals, 22 assists) during the stretch.  He also tallied a career-high, 11-game point streak from December 3 at Victoriaville to January 26 vs. Rimouski, registering 14 points (10 goals, four assists) over the span.

The 5-9, 170-pounder has appeared in 91 career QMJHL games over two seasons with Quebec, registering 45 goals and 55 assists for 100 points, along with 35 penalty minutes.  As a rookie in 2009-10, Bourque registered 43 points (19 goals, 24 assists) in 44 games with Quebec.  He ranked seventh among all QMJHL rookies in goals (19), 10th in points (43) and tied for 11th in assists (24).  He also ranked sixth on Quebec in goals and points, and tied for seventh in assists.  Bourque notched his first career QMJHL hat trick on February 6, 2010 vs. Gatineau.  He registered 11 multi-point performances, including three, four-point efforts, and tallied 14 points in a nine-game span from October 24 vs. Baie-Comeau to November 15 at Drummondville (four goals, 10 assists over the span).

Prior to joining Quebec, Bourque skated in 75 games over two seasons with the USA National Under-18 Development Team, registering 24 goals and 38 assists for 62 points, along with 60 penalty minutes.  He helped Team USA capture the gold medal at the 2009 U-18 World Championships in Fargo-Moorhead, recording one goal and six assists in seven tournament games.  His six assists ranked fourth on the team.

The Boxford, Massachusetts native was originally the Rangers third round choice, 80th overall, in the 2009 NHL Entry Draft.

Here is the McIlrath release…:


New York, March 16, 2011 – New York Rangers President and General Manager Glen Sather announced today that the club has agreed to terms with defenseman Dylan McIlrath.

McIlrath, 18, has skated in 59 games with the Moose Jaw Warriors of the Western Hockey League (WHL) this season, registering five goals and 18 assists for 23 points, along with 141 penalty minutes.  He ranks third among team defensemen in points, goals and power play goals (two), and ranks third on Moose Jaw in penalty minutes.  McIlrath established a career-high with his 18th assist of the season in a 5-3 win vs. Regina on March 1.  He has also tied his career-high with four multi-point performances this season, including back-to-back two-assist efforts on January 19 vs. Lethbridge and January 21 at Edmonton.  McIlrath recorded at least one point in six of eight games from October 13 vs. Kootenay to November 5 at Regina, registering seven points (two goals, five assists) during the stretch.  In addition, he posted a career-high, four-game point streak from December 14 vs. Saskatoon to December 28 at Calgary, tallying five points (one goal, four assists) over the span.

Last season, McIlrath received Moose Jaw’s Most Improved Player Award for the second consecutive season, establishing career-highs in games played (65), goals (seven), points (24), penalty minutes (169), plus/minus rating (plus-20), and game-winning goals (two).  He ranked second on Moose Jaw with a plus-20 rating, having made a plus-42 improvement in plus/minus rating over the previous season.  He also tied for third among team defensemen in goals, assists and points, and led the Warriors and ranked seventh in the league in penalty minutes.  The second-year defenseman was selected to participate in the 2010 Canadian Hockey League (CHL) Top Prospects Game on January 20 as a member of Team Orr, and he finished second in the Hardest Shot event at the Skills Competition with a 91.8 mph shot.  In addition, McIlrath registered one assist and 21 penalty minutes in seven playoff contests, making his WHL playoff debut on March 18 at Calgary and tallying his first career playoff point with an assist on March 23 vs. Calgary.

The 6-5, 215-pounder has appeared in 177 career WHL games over three seasons with Moose Jaw, registering 13 goals and 38 assists for 51 points, along with 412 penalty minutes.  McIlrath captured Moose Jaw’s Most Improved Player Award following his rookie season in 2008-09.  He made his WHL debut on September 19, 2008 vs. Swift Current, and registered his first career point with a goal on January 10, 2009 at Saskatoon.  McIlrath has also tallied one assist and 21 penalty minutes in seven career playoff games with Moose Jaw.

The Winnipeg, Manitoba native was originally selected as the Rangers first round choice, 10th overall, in the 2010 NHL Entry Draft.


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