Unlike Fast, Etem is not a proven Ranger, but anyone saying at this point in the season that he’s “not a good fit” is simply fishing for attention and misleading you. Out of seven regular season games so far, he has dressed for one and in that game he played a total of 7:09. The opponent was the Montreal Canadiens, the goalie: Cary Price. That’s not exactly a fair performance sampling for an NHL forward.
In addition to his 6G/2A/8P in 23 playoff games, Etem also has 113 regular season NHL matches under his belt (15G/16A/31P). He isn’t new to NHL ice time. Etem is naturally gifted with size and speed, listing at almost 25lbs heavier than Fast, but he doesn’t have the same in-house ‘pedigree’ and he has the unsavory (and unfairly attached) tag hanging off him that, to many fans, reads “Hagelin’s Replacement.” He isn’t. He isn’t supposed to be. He was never supposed to be.
But can he give us some points and some of Hagelin’s production? We’re probably about to find out because Etem should start seeing more starts with Glass out of the mix in AV’s Jenga game. He’s young (23, like Fast), big, speedy and has skilled hands. He fits EXACTLY into the Rangers’ youth movement. It’s a mix AV and the Rangers are willing to keep developing.