Micheal Haley was given his first real chance to make an impact as a Ranger, and he took full advantage of it.

To start the third period of last night’s 3-1 loss to the Sabres at the First Niagara Center, Haley was promoted to the second line with Derek Stepan and Ryan Callahan, and came inches away from scoring his first goal with his new team.

“It was a good save,” Haley said of his open shot from in front with just over five minutes gone by in the final frame, robbed as backup goalie Jhonas Enroth lifted his blocker to deny the recently called-up enforcer. “I think I had some more room higher. Tough one.”

In his fifth game since being called up from the Connecticut Whale (AHL), Haley got 10:06 of ice time, surpassing his previous high of 7:00. Though the Rangers were often outmuscled in front of the net, Haley showed himself for at least one game to be more than a stopgap until Arron Asham returns from his back injury.

”It’s my job to do what I’m asked [to do], and just try to play hard,” Haley said. “If it’s four minutes, or eight minutes, or whenever they ask me to do something, I just want to be ready to the best of my ability.”