Habs must be ‘shaking their heads’ after trading McDonagh, says AV

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Some high praise today for Rangers defenseman Ryan McDonagh, from his coach, Alain Vigneault.

“We were just talking about him before practice about how Montreal must be just shaking their heads,” Vigneault said, per Newsday. “He’s a thoroughbred…Having been with him now for 70 games, not only is he dependable and playing against the top lines, because of his skating and skill set, he’s got offensive potential, and he’s only going to get better…He’s a real force out there. We’re lucky to have him.”

McDonagh, of course, came to New York as part of the Scott Gomez trade in the summer of 2009. The 24-year-old is enjoying a career season, with 37 points in 70 games while logging almost 25 minutes a night on the ice.

And as Vigneault noted, McDonagh isn’t getting the cushy assignments. He starts plenty in the defensive zone, goes up against the toughest competition, and averages 2:44 on the penalty kill.

Even better for the Rangers? McDonagh is locked up through 2018-19 for a mere cap hit of $4.7 million.