New York Rangers: Which Rookie Stood Out the Most


To be considered a rookie on the New York Rangers, or any team, “a player must not have played in more than 25 NHL games in any preceding season, nor in six or more NHL games in each of any two preceding seasons,” according to

Going by this definition, there were two rookies on Broadway. Both were standout players, both were surprisingly offensive threats and both impressed whether it was the regular season or postseason.

But who stood out to you the most?

Jesper Fast

This is Fast’s second year as a Blueshirt. His 11 games last year failed to establish him as a staple in the lineup. But this season, with 58 games now in the books, Fast has grown to be a standout player and has shown a lot of potential.

The 6’0″ 185 pound forward skates with a lot of energy and fits perfectly with the Rangers’ quick style of game. He’s extremely reliable in the bottom-six, shown by his five giveaways in the regular season: shockingly one less than Anthony Duclair who logged 18 games. Yet, when Fast is placed in the top-six, he truly shines.

New York Rangers
New York Rangers /

New York Rangers

After having registered six goals and eight assists in the regular season, the Swedish native picked up his game and recorded an honorable three goals and three assists in the Playoffs.

Those three Playoff goals lands Fast as the fifth best rookie in the goals department. And with six points, he’s the sixth best rookie – out of all 30 rookies in the Playoffs – in the points category.

Not bad, right? But wait, there’s one more.

Kevin Hayes

This was Hayes’ very first year in the league and he practically has a full season under his belt already. In 79 games, the Bahston Cawledge alum bagged 17 goals and 28 assists. If you’re not familiar with the hockey world, that’s pretty much amazing numbers for a rookie.

His two-way play is incredible at times and he’s especially dangerous when he crowds the net. Hayes might not have shown this in his first few NHL games, but it wasn’t very long until the 6’5″ 225 pound forward found his groove. Hayes then became so good, he earned substantial time on the first line – not only in the regular season, but in the Playoffs as well.

More from Editorials

In the postseason, Hayes recorded two goals and five assists. With his seven points, Hayes finished fourth in that column out of all the rookies and above Fast. Additionally, Hayes was the third best rookie overall in Playoffs assists.

With all of that said, Hayes was the better rookie this season in my eyes. He was a bigger surprise offensively and seems to have more potential than Fast. Hayes absolutely needs to improve on his face-off, but Fast could improve in a few areas to meet the level that Hayes is on.

So, what do you think? Vote in the poll or add a comment below.

Next: Should Yandle Re-Sign with the Rangers?

More from Blue Line Station