With players such as Chris Kreider, JT Miller, Christian Thomas and others taking the next step in their careers to the CT Whale this year, there's a whole new crop of Rangers prospects to begin following at the NCAA and CHL level. And no one follows them better than Jess Rubenstein at The Prospect Park (here & here).
One player we ARE aware of, is Michael St. Croix (2011 - 4th) who Jess reports has picked up where he left off last year...
"Last year at this time Michael St. Croix (NYR 2011 4th) after 9 games (2-3-5) was struggling to find his game. What a difference a year makes as after 9 games this season, St. Croix is 5th in the WHL in scoring (5-9-14)."
St. Croix finished last season with 45g, 60a.
As far as the newer faces go, Rubenstein says Cristoval "Boo" Nieves (2012 - 2nd) recorded his first two points at the NCAA level to help 3rd ranked Michigan earn their first win of the season 7-2 over RIT.
While, Brady Skjei (2012 - 1st) earned the game's 3rd star in just his 2nd contest as a Minnesota Golden Gopher on Saturday night as he finished 1-1-2 and +1 in a 7-1 win over Michigan State.
Finally, Steven Fogarty (NYR 2011 3rd) had two shots in his NCAA debut for Notre Dame Friday night, but for the most part had a quiet game during the Fighting Irish's 1-0 win over Maine in the first round of the Ice Breaker Tournament. Fogarty went scoreless again last night as Notre Dame defeated Nebraska-Omaha 3-2 in the tournament final.
...great seeing the new guys starting the next phase of their hockey careers on the right foot. It's still very early, but the genius that is Gordie Clark is once again shining through with this new crop of prospects.