The Carolina Hurricanes should also watch these guys
Coming off his best season statistically, Strome provides New York with much-needed depth. With 59 points and a +21 rating during the regular season, he has a bit of a two-way nature to his game. Filling in as the top-line center with Zibanejad out, it is possible that his numbers were a bit inflated with Panarin on his wing, but that is not to say he isn’t a decent player.
Kreider plays more of the power forward brand of hockey built for the postseason. This physical edge is what will make him a key piece for the Rangers throughout the series. The only thing here is that he is coming off an injury so it might take him a bit to get back up to speed, even with all the time off for everyone else.
Lastly, Buchnevich is a guy who seemly always scores or assists on that momentum draining goal late in games versus the Hurricanes. Not as high on the depth chart as some of the other names mentioned, he still knows how to score and produce offensively with 46 points on the year.
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I elected to leave all of these guys off the main list, as I believe the Carolina Hurricanes have more than enough depth throughout to shut these guys down. Unlike Panarin and Zibanejad they aren’t locked to get on the score sheet if properly defended. Taking away their time and space while limiting them to the outside should be more than enough to keep them in check.
While most of the information presented has been history, there’s no reason to believe it will repeat itself this time around. Last spring we saw the Canes defeat Washington in the playoffs, a team that had their number in the regular season. Given how deep the Hurricanes currently are, we could see a similar result this time around.
However, if any of the names mentioned aren’t kept in check, the Hurricanes season could be over before it really ever started back up, resulting in them hoping for lottery luck rather than making a run at the cup.
Question for CC readers: Who do think will be the hardest Ranger to contain and shut down throughout the series?