Cristoval "Boo" Nieves made an immediate impression with the New York Rangers' American Hockey League affiliate in Hartford three years after he was chosen in the second round (No. 59) of the 2012 NHL Draft.
Nieves spent four seasons at the University of Michigan after the Rangers drafted him. As a senior in 2015-16 he had 31 points (10 goals, 21 assists) and a plus-9 rating in 35 games to help Michigan win the Big 10 championship and receive a berth in the NCAA Tournament. Serving as an alternate captain, Nieves helped Michigan advance to the second round, where it lost to eventual national champion Notre Dame. He parlayed that success into a two-year, entry-level contract he signed with the Rangers on March 28, 2016.