Union captain Mat Bodie signs with New York Rangers

Matt Dewkett

The New York Rangers are getting a great leader in Union captain Mat Bodie.

Union College senior captain Mat Bodie has signed an NHL contract with the New York Rangers, according to Katie Strang of ESPN. The star blue liner was a second team All-American this past season as he led the Dutchmen to the school's first NCAA National Championship at the Frozen Four in Philadelphia this past weekend.

Fellow blue liner Shayne Gostisbehere got most of the attention, but Bodie is a terrific offensive defenseman with great vision and poise. His defensive game isn't necessarily a weakness, but the play in his own zone is the one element of his game that will need the most work if he is going to have a long career in the NHL.

Bodie's biggest asset is his leadership and intangibles. He consistently drew praise from his teammates and coaching staff for his ability to keep the team together, confident and pointing in the right direction.

"Behind the scenes, the guy's a great leader and he calms everything down. We're down a goal, tied, whatever, just like that, leadership is a big part of why our team is where we are, because of that guy," said Gostisbehere, a Philadelphia Flyers draft pick.

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Jeff Cox covers college, junior and high school hockey, NCAA recruiting and NHL Draft prospects. Follow him on twitter @JeffCoxSBNation.

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