If Brooksie is right and the Rangers have signed Derek Stepan, let's hope he doesn't make the team. Let him spend a year in the W as the leap from the NCAA is too much ... just look at what happened with Hobey. Matt Gilroy came out of the gates well but clearly ran out of steam by Christmastime, resulting in first the demotion and then the end-of-season benching. It is one thing to star playing against kids two, three years younger than you while playing 40 games and it is another to face professionals over a grinding 82 game schedule.
As we saw in the World Juniors and the Frozen Four, Stepan has skill and it is easy to dream of him centering the first line of the Blueshirts. But let's face it, with few exceptions, making the NHL is a process and the Rangers would be well served not rushing him through it. As always - to our dismay - they will not be rebuilding and will attempt to challenge for a playoff spot. Burdening this kid with that is simply not worth it in the long run.