Neal Pionk

New York Rangers
WFAN Radio

Fantasy Summary

Offensive, puck-moving defensemen who makes a solid case as a top-5 NHL defender.


Attributes
Fantasy Upside 6.0
NHL Certainty 9.0
Country USA
Position D
Roster Type NHL
Shoot/Glove Right
Date of Birth July 29, 1995
Height 6‘0”
Weight 190 lbs
Drafted No

Observations

June 2018 – After leaving the University of Minnesota-Duluth early in order to turn pro, Pionk became a bright spot for the Rangers’ blueline in a season where disappointment was abundant. The rookie was welcomed into the NHL after playing two thirds of the year with the Wolfpack. His offensive abilities seemingly accelerated after his promotion, in which the 22-year-old scored at a 0.5 point-per-game pace, and quickly rose to the Rangers’ top pair where he averaged over 22 minutes of ice time per game. Unfortunately for Pionk, Pionk owners, and the Blushirts, his underlying numbers don’t necessarily point toward being a sustainable top-2 defender. Caution should be used when considering his offensive outburst of the last 6-months, largely due to the fact that it’s unlikely the Ranger’s will continue to deploy him as heavily with such ease. At the time of his call-up the Ranger’s had all but been eliminated from playoff contention. His audition was truly that, and although he has proven that he can contribute offensively, he shouldn’t be leaned on for much more than a 30-point season in the coming campaign. Brayden Olafson
 

July 2017 – Pionk signed a two-year, two-way deal with the Rangers in May 2017 after two stand out seasons for the University of Minnesota-Duluth Bulldogs.  The slick skating, offensive-minded Pionk finished 2016-17 with 34 points (7 goals, 27 assists) in 42 games played, including reaching the national championship game.  Pionk ranked top ten nationwide in three categories for defenseman: assists, points and plus/minus and was awarded USCHO all third-team status which he shared with fellow sophomores and high profile prospects Charlie McAvoy and Troy Terry.  In addition to his offensive abilities, Pionk excels as a strong puck moving defenseman who leverages his quickness and agility to create space.  Prior to UMD Pionk spent three seasons with the Sioux City Musketeers of the USHL where he won defenseman of the year honors in 2014-15.  He also attended the Washington Capitals development camp in 2015.  Geoff Kent


Stats

 Season Team League GP G A TP PIM      Playoffs GP G A TP PIM 
 2011-2012 Hermantown High USHS-MN 25 7 6 13 12 | Playoffs 3 0 3 3
  Hermantown High MN State 3 1 0 1 4 |          
 2012-2013 Hermantown High USHS-MN 25 14 15 29 25 | Playoffs 3 2 3 5
  Team North UMHSEHL 20 1 10 11 32 | Playoffs 3 1 0 1
  Hermantown High MN State 3 0 5 5 2 |          
  Sioux City Musketeers USHL 12 1 5 6 2 |          
 2013-2014 Sioux City Musketeers USHL 54 2 21 23 93 | Playoffs 7 0 1 1 10 
  USA U19 WJAC-19 4 0 2 2 8 |          
 2014-2015 Sioux City Musketeers USHL 53 7 41 48 104 | Playoffs 5 0 1 1 10 
  Sioux City Musketeers JCWC 5 1 0 1 2 |          
 2015-2016 Univ. of Minnesota-Duluth NCAA 40 4 13 17 44 |          
 2016-2017 Univ. of Minnesota-Duluth NCAA 42 7 27 34 25 |          
 2017-2018 New York Rangers NHL 28 1 13 14 12 |          
  Hartford Wolf Pack AHL 48 1 16 17 20 |          
  USA WC 10 2 1 3 4 |          
 2018-2019 New York Rangers NHL 28 4 12 16 8 |          

Highlights