New York Rangers draft Raoul Boilard in the fourth round to open its day two account

2024 Upper Deck NHL Draft - Rounds 2-7
2024 Upper Deck NHL Draft - Rounds 2-7 / Bruce Bennett/GettyImages

With their first pick of day two, the New York Rangers take center Raoul Boilard from the Baie-Comeau Drakker in the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League. At 6'1, 190 lbs, this forward fits the mantra of a large person who will be difficult to play against. Knowing that the Rangers want agitators and physical players, this is not a bad bet for a fourth-round pick. It's not a player with extreme scoring talent, but that doesn't make it wrong.

Boilard recorded 22 goals and 40 assists in 68 games this season, so he is more than capable of scoring, but it is worth remembering that this is a player from a more forgiving junior league. Quebec isn't as demanding as Ontario or the West, and he's unlikely to have that scoring transition to the professional game. For a fourth-round pick, that's fine, but it does mean that the expectations need to differ.

It means he must be an aggressive forechecker and a physical presence. That is something that Boilard can do and something he enjoys. He's not afraid of a big hit and never shy away from a scrap. It'll be interesting to see if that'll continue when he plays against men and veterans of the professional leagues. Still, there's very little reason to doubt his ability to be a bottom-sixer in the NHL if all goes well.

And there's every chance my two brain cells are wrong, and this player breaks out in the QMJHL and becomes a force of nature in the NHL. This is a gamble, but all draft picks are. The Rangers need to have this player develop a little more before he will become something that the Blueshirts can use. He's got talent, and he's got will. That'll make him someone to keep an eye on regardless of everything else.