Benoit Pouliot, as of right now, is the weakest link on the New York Rangers roster. The 27-year-old was a former first-round pick back in 2005 and has failed to live up to expectations at every stop of his career.
The Rangers are Pouliot’s fifth team already, and while he started off the 2013-14 season decently, Pouiliot has regressed to being the player that frustrates coaches and fans alike. With an early game-winning goal and assist this season, Pouliot has since only recorded one more of each, and it is nearing December.
Head coach Alain Vigneault wants to give Pouliot a chance to showcase himself and even said that Pouliot is at a crossroads in his career. Vigneault knows that this might be Pouliot’s last chance in the NHL, but he is just not helping out his cause. Not only is Pouliot not scoring, but he is constantly turning the puck over in all three zones. It got so bad in one game that Vigneault had to bench him.
In my opinion, Pouliot’s days on the Rangers, and maybe even in the NHL, are certainly numbered.
One of the major needs of this Rangers team, somewhat surprisingly, is having sizable grinders. The Rangers lack the big, hard-nosed grinders who plants himself in front of the net and jams in rebounds. Contending teams score a lot of garbage goals and have players like these, while the Rangers really don’t.
Plus with the Rangers up against the salary cap, it would probably be more cost effective and realistic to get this type of player for Pouliot rather than a natural goalscorer. I’m sure Pouliot is a nice guy and good teammate, but this is a business, and the Rangers should waste no more time in getting rid of him and exploring some better options out there.
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