Boo Nieves Recalled from Hartford

With sudden and surprise injuries to Chris Kreider and Pavel Buchnevich, the Rangers have recalled Cristobal “Boo” Nieves from the Hartford Wolf Pack to meet them in Vancouver.  The official press release from the Rangers can be found below.

Buchnevich’s injury is being described as a recurrence of his back spasms.  Some additional rest and time off should allow him to recover completely.  However, AV refused to confirm Kreider’s issue as being a recurrence of his neck spasms.  Now, this is purely speculation on my part, but I seem to remember Sidney Crosby missing a lot of time with what was diagnosed as a concussion, but then later changed to be described as a neck injury.  Perhaps Kreider’s issue is similar to Crosby’s. Then again, it could be completely unrelated. All I know is that it is not a good sign that he came back, played, was fine, and then the day after the game he had an issue. That is what concerns me, that he was not hurt while playing, unlike Buchnevich, who felt his back become an issue during warm ups.

Here is a link to an article by Stephania Bell of ESPN regarding the issues that Crosby faced with his neck injury in 2011-2012.  It’s a fascinating read about why a small injury to the neck’s soft tissue could result in a debilitating condition that has symptoms similar to a concussion.  I just hope Kreider gets well soon and this doesn’t become a lingering issue to derail his season.  Again, this is all speculation, but it is a concerning injury, occurring at a concerning time.

As for the callup of Nieves, I am a bit surprised that he was the first choice given Hrivik’s strong start to the AHL season and actual (albeit limited) NHL experience. Still, I’m excited to see what Nieves can do, especially after his strong showing in the Traverse City tournament.  He will likely take a fourth line role and allow Michael Grabner to stay on the first line with Stepan and Nash. Clendening is likely headed back to the press box.

Here is the official release from the team:

Rangers Recall Cistoval Nieves from Hartford

New York Rangers General Manager Jeff Gorton announced today that the team has recalled Cristoval Nieves from the Hartford Wolf Pack of the American Hockey League (AHL).

Nieves, 22, has skated in 13 games with the Wolf Pack this season, registering one goal and five assists for six points. He ranks second on the team in assists and ranks third on the team in points in 2016-17, and he also leads all rookies on Hartford in assists and points this season. Nieves has registered four assists/points in the last seven games. In addition, he is the only skater on the Wolf Pack who has not been called for a penalty thus far this season.

The 6-3, 219-pounder has skated in 21 career AHL games over parts of two seasons with Hartford (2015-16 and 2016-17), registering three goals and eight assists for 11 points. Nieves tallied a point in each of his first four career AHL games from Apr. 1, 2016 – Apr. 9, 2016, tallying five points (two goals, three assists) over the span. Nieves has not been called for a penalty thus far in his professional career.

Prior to beginning his professional career, Nieves skated in 144 career collegiate games over four seasons with the University of Michigan (2012-13 – 2015-16), registering 28 goals and 82 assists for 110 points, along with a plus-10 rating and 72 penalty minutes. He recorded 21 assists in three of his four seasons with the Wolverines. Nieves posted a faceoff win percentage of 50.0% or better in each of his four seasons with the University of Michigan, and he established a collegiate career-high with a 59.5% faceoff win percentage in 2015-16 (393-for-660).

In his final season of collegiate hockey in 2015-16, Nieves registered 10 goals and 21 assists for 31 points, along with a plus-nine rating 35 games. He established collegiate career-highs in goals, points, and plus/minus rating, and tied his collegiate career-high in assists while helping the Wolverines win the Big Ten Championship in 2015-16.

Prior to the start of this season, Nieves represented the Rangers at the 2016 Traverse City Tournament. Nieves, who served as the Rangers’ captain during the tournament, registered three points (one goal, two assists) in four games, and he tied for second on the team in assists and points.

The Syracuse, New York, native was selected by the Rangers in the second round, 59th overall, of the 2012 NHL Entry Draft.

38 thoughts on “Boo Nieves Recalled from Hartford”

  1. Tomb – I would presume Gorton and AV must have spoken to Ken Gernander to get an idea of how Nieves, Hrivik and Jensen have been playing (the three most likely candidates for recall).

    But I wonder if the Rangers braintrust went with Boo because he is the best skater by far and the Rangers have been surviving and thriving on team speed.

    It also gives management a chance to see what Nieves can do in real NHL action as opposed to pre-season. If they like what they see then the need for additional center depth at the trade deadline can be channeled into resources to beef up the blue line.


  2. Concur with anthonyM

    I had a feeling though. Even if Hrivik is playing objectively better now, any good play and experience < the AV endorsement. You knew as soon as AV opened his mouth about Boo in preseason, he'd be on the shortlist (barring a bad season)


  3. I really like the Nieves call up. My only complaint is going to be Rosen yammering on about him being called “boo”


  4. My take is AV knows what he has with Ribbit and agree he fell in love with Boo’s wheels preseason.
    Oscar still looks hampered and really wondering what is going on with training staff from last season with Dan G on cracked knee, Lindbergh playing hurt and now THE and Butch in and out of lineup. It’s almost as bad as the Mets


  5. It’s been hours since we’ve had a good line-combo session. Is AV supposed to figure this out on his own before Vancouver? Time to get on it!


  6. Wicky this move will do exactly that. I forget what topic it was regarding but I had said this was the move they’d make at some point. What’s concerning is whether it means both Buch and Kreids will be out for an extended period of time. But then again they were short a 12th forward. I’m assuming Boo goes to 4C with Oscar on his wing. Graby and Pirri to top 9 W spots.


  7. SN, I don’t know why I’m the only guy on earth that thinks Lindberg needs a conditioning stint in Hartford. but I agree, it’s a troubling pattern beginning to form.


  8. James – OScar, Kleiner, THE have all played hurt. The old adage, there is a difference between being hurt and injured, but with the depth and call ups available its like AV is playing for the playoffs now


  9. Nice to see Carp popping in and using his favourite Carp-isms. Wait no “jack-wagon”?

    Sam’s going to love saying Boo, and then explaining where the nickname comes from all the time. I’m guessing they like his speed more than Hrivik’s and were intrigued by the small pre-season sample he left behind


  10. Good morning, boneheads!
    I’m very glad it’s Nieves. And why not? The team is 8 games over .500, second in the league. A couple of years ago it would’ve been same safe bet, Hrivik and Co. Why not give your best forward prospect an opportunity to see what he can do in real NHL life? Apparently it’s ok to have multiple rookies in the lineup.


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