From the Rangers:
New York, September 19, 2009 – New York Rangers President and General Manager Glen Sather announced today that the club has assigned the following five players to Hartford (AHL): goaltenders Chad Johnson and Matt Zaba; defensemen Ilkka Heikkinen and Corey Potter; and forward Paul Crowder.
The Rangers now have 25 players remaining in training camp, including two goaltenders, eight defensemen and 15 forwards. The team will have an off day tomorrow and continue their exhibition schedule Monday, September 21 at 7:00 PM when the team will face-off against the Red Wings at Madison Square Garden.
PLAYERS ASSIGNED TO HARTFORD (AHL) ON 9/19/09:
Goal: Chad Johnson, Matt Zaba
Defense: Ilkka Heikkinen, Corey Potter
Forwards: Paul Crowder
PLAYERS STILL IN NEW YORK RANGERS TRAINING CAMP:
Goal: Henrik Lundqvist, Steve Valiquette
Defense: Michael Del Zotto, Matt Gilroy, Dan Girardi, Wade Redden, Michal Rozsival, Bobby Sanguinetti, Alexei Semenov, Marc Staal
Forwards: Artem Anisimov, Sean Avery, Brian Boyle, Donald Brashear, Ryan Callahan, Chris Drury, Brandon Dubinsky, Marian Gaborik, Evgeny Grachev, Christopher Higgins, Ales Kotalik, Enver Lisin, P.A. Parenteau, Vinny Prospal, Aaron Voros
Even thought Chad “Nueve Seis” Johnson has clearly been outplaying Stephen Valiquette this pre-season, it would be foolish to make Johnson the back up goalie at this point. What is the point in letting him rot on the bench for 65-70 games when he can be starting up in Hartford?
Let him start the season in Hartford, and if Valy isn’t doing the job he’s supposed to, then bring in the reinforcements. At least let Vally stay until the Olympics.