Photo: Dylan McIlrath has gradually developed into a dependable and physical defensive defenseman. The New York Rangers selected McIlrath 10th overall in the 2010 NHL Draft. (courtesy of Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)
It seems like a distant memory now, but just six or seven years ago, the New York Rangers had few homegrown players on their NHL roster. Big name free agents were the norm for this original six team, with few of the team's prospects ever appearing in more than one or two games on Broadway.
Photo: Forward Oscar Lindberg is expected to make his NHL debut in 2013-14. Lindberg was acquired in a trade with Phoenix in 2011. (courtesy of Jonathan Nackstrand/AFP/Getty Images)
The upper portion of the New York Rangers Top 20 has not changed for several cycles. Chris Kreider remains the premier player among a very talented group, while Danny Kristo, obtained in a July 2013 trade with Montreal, now occupies the number two position.
Photo: Danish forward Thomas Spelling played the 2012-13 season in Sweden with Rogle, spending most of his time in the SuperElit league. (courtesy of Richard Wolowicz/Getty Images)
The New York Rangers have never been afraid to sign college free agents, having already signed one defenseman, Conor Allen, to an entry-level contract this spring. Over the past couple of seasons, the Rangers additionally invite two or three potential NCAA free agent signees to development camp in late June. Last summer, Kyle Jean was signed to an entry-level contract after just such a camp.
Photo: Winger Christian Thomas is one of several Rangers forward prospects who are playing their first season of professional hockey. (courtesy of Francois Lacasse/NHLI via Getty Images)
The New York Rangers boast excellent forward depth, with the likes of Chris Kreider, J.T. Miller, and Mats Zuccarello all seeing some time on the NHL squad this season. The Rangers also have several other prospects who are close to making an impact in the NHL, including Christian Thomas, Jesper Fasth, and Dylan McIlrath.
Photo: Northeastern University forward Cody Ferriero is one of several San Jose Sharks prospects to have a strong showing in the month of January (courtesy of Michael Tureski/Icon SMI)
The opening month of the 2013 calendar saw many fantastic performances from around college hockey. Hockey’s Future takes a look back at some of the month’s highlights (and lowlights). Unless otherwise noted, all stats are current as of Jan. 31st.