World Juniors Update: New York Ranger prospects continue to shine

Rangers prospect rankings
USA’s Brett Berard (21) celebrates a goal against Sweden during first period IIHF World Junior Hockey Championship action in Edmonton, Alberta, Sunday, Aug. 14, 2022. (Jason Franson/The Canadian Press via AP)

The World Juniors continue to roll on in Edmonton. 

Almost every NHL organization has a player or multiple prospects that they can keep an eye on. The New York Islander’s second-round pick Aatu Raty has dominated for Finland so far. Mason McTavish has been superb for Canada as a member of the Ducks organization. 

But perhaps no team has seen as successful a run as the New York Rangers and their seven prospects currently playing in the World Juniors. 

The weekend saw all Ranger prospects score at least a point for their respective teams and showed continued improvement in their game. 

Let’s take a look at each standout prospect. 

World Juniors favorites: Team Canada

The Canadian national team in world juniors has dominated their group in just about every facet. In three victories, the group has outscored their opponents by a combined 21-4. 

A big reason for that is the combined skillset of Will Cuylle and Brennan Othmann. Two of the top-ranked prospects the Rangers currently hold rights to. 

Othmann tallied two assists in Canada’s 5-1 win over the Czech Republic. Cuylle scored in Canada’s 11-1 blowout win over Slovakia on Thursday as well. Add in the fact that Ranger’s goaltender prospect Dylan Garland saved 22 of 23 shots and it’s been complete domination from Canada, and the current prospects on the Blueshirts. 

Team USA: Providence Standout 

Brett Berard is the lone member of the New York Rangers on Team USA and he finally got on the board over the weekend. 

In the United State’s 3-2 win over Sweden, Berard got the scoring started early and showed that size isn’t an issue for the Providence standout. 

New York has yet to sign Berard to an entry-level contract yet as the former fifth-round selection continues to develop, but it’s clear that after a strong prospect development camp, and finally getting on the board at World Junior’s, Berard is clearly up to the task. 

Slovakia Struggles

Slovakia has been blown out many times in World Juniors, but Adam Sykora, the Ranger’s second-round pick this season has shown the fight and scoring ability that has made him a commodity among other Ranger prospects. 

Sykora scored in Friday’s 3-2 win over Latvia but also was given a 5-minute major and game misconduct for a knee-to-knee hit in Sunday’s 9-3 loss to Finland. 

Sykora proclaimed himself a “rat” and modeled his game after Brad Marchand but can also toe the line between clean and overly aggressive. While still young, moments like these are times to learn how to be more disciplined. 

Sykora isn’t the only Ranger’s prospect in hot water

Probably the most popular clip circulating over the weekend from World Juniors was when Czech forward Jaroslav Chmelar hit fellow New York Rangers prospect Brennan Othmann from behind.

Othmann was shaken up but continued to play while Chmelar was given a five-minute major and was ejected from the game. He did not play in Sunday’s 5-2 loss to Latvia.

Both players reportedly made amends after the contest, but it could lead to further punishment for Chmelar.

Chmelar will join Ranger’s prospect Brett Berard in Providence this upcoming season. 

Finland’s lone Ranger’s Rep. Scores

Kalle Vaisanen was the final Ranger’s prospect to get a goal in World Juniors this past weekend. Finland blew through Slovakia on Sunday, but Vaisanen scored a goal to have every Ranger’s prospect not named Dylan Garland have scored at least one goal in the tournament. 

 Vaisanen was a fourth-round selection for the Rangers back in the 2021 NHL Draft and has continued to show improvements throughout World Juniors. 

Not many teams boast the loaded talent at both the professional club, and prospect pool that the New York Rangers possess. As the tournament continues, it’s more of an opportunity for the young prospects to continue to show their growth and development, while also pushing to help their team win. 

For more New York Rangers news, turn to AMNY.com