Huge opportunity emerges for Alexis Lafrenière!
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Huge opportunity emerges for Alexis Lafrenière!

This could be exactly what the forward needs.



It’s been months since the first rumours of a potential trade for New York Rangers forward Alexis Lafrenière surfaced, and the chatter only got louder when he failed to impress during the Blue Shirts’ short playoff run. There were even talks linking him to the Vancouver Canucks, where his former agent, Emily Castonguay is not assistant general manager, and could look to acquire her former client.

However, there is a new head coach in NYC. Peter Laviolette was hired to take over behind the Rangers’ bench and during his press conference, he explained how he intends to give more responsibilities to Lafrenière and Kaapo Kakko next season.

“Those young players do need an opportunity to grow,” he said during on Tuesday. “They have to be … given the opportunity to be counted on more. … They want to feel valued with what they do.”

He added, “You certainly would like to see them take the next step: More minutes, maybe a little higher up the lineup, maybe more power-play time. With that, there has to be opportunity. These conversations will take place - I certainly would like that - and those opportunities will be there for them to grab that ice time and to push.”

This might be exactly what Lafrenière needs to get his confidence back on the Rangers’ roster. After all, he was selected first overall in 2020, but just like Kakko, he has not lived up to the expectations that was placed upon him in New York.
Laviolette could build off Lafreniere and Kakko’s career season they enjoyed in 2022-23. The latter put up career-high 18 goals and 40 points in all 82 games, while Lafrenière posted a career-best 39 points (16 goals, 23 assists) in one less contest.

Laviolette wants to use the Rangers’ mix of veterans and young players to his advantage and Lafrenière could certainly benefit from that approach.

“I think it’s a really good balance and blend right now,” he said. “Teams in the past that I’ve found success with, I think they’ve had that balance and that blend.”

Let's see if that works for Lafrenière, who gets a huge opportunity in New York City.

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