On Tuesday, the New York Rangers released their preseason schedule.
While normally cause for little interest, the release was intriguing in that it features a game that defies all preconceived notions of preseason hockey — because it’s actually kind of compelling.
On Sept. 26, new coach Alain Vigneault will take the Blueshirts to his old stomping ground, Vancouver, to face the Canucks, who are now coached by Vigneault’s predecessor in New York:
The game is part of New York’s West Coast exhibition tour, which begins with a Sept. 23 game in Calgary, followed by a game the following night against the Oilers in Edmonton.
From there, the Rangers will fly to Vancouver to take on the Canucks, before heading to Las Vegas to partake in the Kings’ annual Frozen Fury event at the MGM Grand Garden Arena.
It makes sense the Canucks and Rangers would find a way to meet up.
Per the Elias Sports Bureau, this is the first time in NHL history two coaches have swapped benches and become the other’s immediate successor.
Vigneault left Vancouver as the Canucks’ all-time winningest head coach, capturing the Jack Adams trophy in 2007 while leading the club to back-to-back Presidents’ Trophies in 2011 and ’12.
Tortorella was an Adams nominee in 2012, leading the Rangers to first place in the Eastern Conference (for the first time since 1994) and the conference finals (for the first time since 1997.)
Ken Appleby never got drafted, but his efforts during the New Jersey Devils’ training camp have earned him an entry-level contract, per the Bergen Record.
Although no team saw it fit to take him before the preseason, the 20-year-old is coming off of a very strong season. He had a 2.08 GAA and .924 save percentage in 50 games with the OHL’s Oshawa Generals. He went on to lead them to a Memorial Cup championship and earned the the Hap Emms Memorial Trophy as the tournament’s top goalie.
Appleby is the fifth goaltender the Devils have under contract after Cory Schneider, Keith Kinkaid, Scott Wedgewood, and Yann Danis. He’ll likely begin the season in the ECHL.
Alexandre Goulet and Jacob Sweeney also participated in the Devils’ training camp on an amateur tryout basis, but both of them have been released.
PHT’s Morning Skate takes a look around the world of hockey to see what’s happening and what we’ll be talking about around the NHL world and beyond.
Some of the NHL’s top players discuss Connor McDavid‘s potential and the hype surrounding him. (Toronto Sun)
While we’re on the subject, Wayne Gretzky recalls what it was like for him going into the NHL and what’s in store for McDavid. (Edmonton Sun)
Sam Gagner is about to start a key season in his career. (Philadelphia Inquirer)
It’s time for the Washington Capitals to make some tough calls, particularly when it comes to Derek Roy. (CSN Mid-Atlantic)
With Raffi Torres hearing scheduled for today, here’s a look back at his suspension history. (San Jose Mercury News)
The Chicago Blackhawks have gotten their championship rings. (NHL.com)