If you’re a New York Rangers fan, than you know what kind of hell that Claude Lemieux put us through when he was a New Jersey Devil.
He scored a lot of goals, was tough to play against, was hard to contain, and was just an overall pest. He knew how to get under a player’s skin and knew how to throw people off their game.
As fate would have it, the Blueshirts acquired his son, Brendan Lemieux, at the trade deadline. While it is certainly strange to have Claude Lemieux’s kid on the Rangers, it has certainly been a deal that has worked out for the Rangers.
As of this writing, Lemieux, 23, has 6 points on 3 goals and 3 assists in 14 games. Yes, I realize that is not a lot of points, but he has brought several other things to the club.
For starters, he has brought more youth. to this franchise This organization needs to continue to get younger and faster and getting someone like Lemieux certainly fulfills that need.
Secondly, he is now one of the hardest workers on the team. This guy battles for pucks, it is not afraid to give and take a hit to make a play, has no problems going into the corners to get the puck, and is an absolute pest just like his father was.
Lemieux also brings speed to this club. When the puck gets dumped into the offensive zone, he is usually one of the first guys in to go and get the puck. He’s also solid at being able to get back to the defensive zone quickly when he needs to.
It appears that he’s also not afraid of anyone. A good example of this came in his team’s 6-3 loss to the Boston Bruins back on March 27.
In that particular game, he stood up to Zdeno Chara. Yes, Lemieux at 6′ 1″ was willing to take on the 6′ 9″ Chara.
Believe it or not, Lemieux could end up being even better next season. In an article by New York Post hockey writer Larry Brooks, Brooks gave the following scouting report on the young agitator:
“The summer will be critical for the winger who has shown top-six aptitude in limited exposure in that role, but lacks the stamina to go full boar for shifts at a time. Whether Lemieux chooses to remain in the area and work with Ben Prentiss in Connecticut or whether he works with a personal trainer out West, No. 48 must improve his conditioning. Tough, edgy and infuses a vanilla team with some personality. Decent hands, too. If the staff believes Lemieux has the ability to play up, it could have an impact on the decision regarding Chris Kreider.”
Unlike his father, the younger Lemieux is a fan favorite on Broadway. The team’s fans appreciate how he goes all out every game and they also love how much he cares about playing well for this team and helping them win.
This was a great pick-up for the Blueshirts. If his play with the team this season is any indication, then he is going to be a lot of fun to watch moving forward.