The New York Rangers have announced that they recalled forward Jesper Fast from the Hartford Wolfpack of the AHL. Ever since Chris Kreider has been injured, the Rangers have struggled to find the right line combinations and have good chemistry from their forwards.
The Rangers have tried all three of their fourth line forwards on the second line featuring Martin St. Louis and Brad Richards, yet none of them have been able to seize the chance. J.T. Miller was also given an opportunity, yet Alain Vigneault said that he has to find a consistent work ethic or he will only be a very good AHL player. With all of this, Fast has an opportunity to have an impact in the NHL.
Fast has had a very good North American debut so far this season. He started the season with the Rangers due to Ryan Callahan and Carl Hagelin‘s injuries and was given responsibility on the penalty kill. While he did not have an impact offensively, Fast was good in his own zone and responsible enough to gain the coaching staff’s trust.
Since being sent down to the Wolfpack, Fast has taken on an offensive role with the team. His 17 goals are third on the team and his 34 points rank him seventh. In his last game, he scored two goals and added an assist that fueled Hartford to victory.
Based on the lines used in practice today, Fast may get an opportunity on a scoring line. He was being used with Richards and Hagelin, while St. Louis was practicing with Rick Nash and Derek Stepan. Hagelin has been one of the Rangers’ surprises this season, while Richards has had yet another roller coaster campaign.
Fast may be playing on the third line, but his linemates are talented, and with Kreider out for an undisclosed amount of time, Fast can use this opportunity to solidify himself into a roster spot going into the postseason for the Rangers.