Derick Brassard has yet to find the magic that made him the New York Rangers‘ best forward during the playoffs last season. For this Rangers team Brassard is a key player who has to find a way to elevate his game. His egregious turnover led to the Winnipeg Jets‘ second goal and got him demoted to the fourth line.
Alain Vigneault obviously knows how well Brassard can play when he is on his game, but these mental lapses are some of the reasons he was shipped from the Columbus Blue Jackets to the Rangers last March. Brassard has so much talent and has shown that he can play well in crunch time so there is no excuse for his poor play lately. Before last night it looked like Brassard was heating up with a three game point streak, but last night was a bad game and he knows it.
Brassard is a play making center who should be surrounded by guys of his skill. Him and Mats Zuccarello showed a lot of chemistry towards the end of last season and into the playoffs. I think if Vigneault wants to get the most out of Brassard he should pair him up with Zuccarello and possibly Brian Boyle. Boyle was the third member on that line that had so much chemistry last season. Vingeault has to find a way to get Brassard going if he wants this Rangers team to start making a push to climb the standings.
Brassard is a key piece to this Rangers team. No one is giving up on him yet, but he must start finding the magic he had last season or else his ice time will diminish.