Per the Rangers Twitter feed, Derek Dorsett will be out tonight with a lingering wrist issue. Taylor Pyatt will return to the lineup in Dorsett’s place. Also, AV noted an unspecified defenseman is banged up and the defensemen will be a game time decision. We can speculate all we want, but we know it isn’t John Moore that is banged up, since AV confirmed he will return tonight. If the unspecified defenseman is good to go, then I assume Justin Falk, who barely played in the third period last game, will be the healthy scratch.
Per Pat Leonard, injured winger Taylor Pyatt has rejoined the team in Tampa Bay. Pyatt, who was concussed after taking a head shot from Columbus Blue Jackets defender Fedor Tyutin, has not played since that game in Columbus on November 7. Pyatt has been the target of a lot of criticism from the fans for his play this season, but that doesn’t take away from the fact that everyone wants to see him healthy.
Although Pyatt has rejoined the team, his return date is still unknown.
Per Pat Leonard, Rick Nash is wearing a full contact jersey today in practice. This is nothing short of great news, as his time table for return –which had been as long as week-to-week earlier this week– is now day-to-day. The Rangers are that much closer to their best player returning to the lineup.
Also per Leonard, Michael Del Zotto appears to be a healthy scratch, as he is paired with Nash on defense. Justin Falk is skating with John Moore. Leonard also notes that Dominic Moore is a go for tomorrow, and Brandon Mashinter will be scratched.
In case you missed it the other day, Dominic Moore –out with an oblique injury– has stated he expects to return to the lineup on Saturday. Moore has been out since October 29, missing seven games in that time. Without him, the Rangers have used a combination of J.T. Miller and Brandon Mashinter to fill the hole in the lineup.
When Moore returns the Rangers will need to sit a player, and there are really only three candidates to sit right now: Miller, Mashinter, and Benoit Pouliot. Miller barely played in the Rangers 3-2 loss to New Jersey (5 minutes), but still managed to play more than Mashinter (3 minutes). Pouliot has been the topic of debate lately due to inconsistent play. A case can be made for any of the three to sit or be demoted.
But it’s not just Moore whose return is imminent. Rick Nash has been skating at practice –albeit with a yellow non-contact jersey– and he is no longer an unknown. He should be returning within a few weeks (I’m optimistic). Right now the only real unknown is Taylor Pyatt, who hasn’t been seen since his concussion.
In a series of tweets from Andrew Gross, Rick Nash (concussion) skated before practice, and has been symptom free for a few days now. Nash is still close to week-to-week than day-to-day, but seeing him skating is always a good sign. Gross also noted that Dominic Moore (oblique) was skating with Nash before practice, and that Taylor Pyatt is indeed concussed after taking a headshot from Fedor Tyutin against Columbus.
There is no time table for return for Nash, Pyatt, or Moore.
Early in the second period, winger Taylor Pyatt took a high elbow from Columbus defenseman Fedor Tyutin. Pyatt went straight to the locker room, and later in the period Sam Rosen noted that Pyatt will not return to the game. Tyutin received a two minute elbowing penalty.
Per Katie Strang, Rick Nash has been performing “intermittent” physical activity at the Rangers practice facility over the past few weeks. While there is nothing new to report on his status or time table for return, being able to perform some physical activity is a good sign. Concussions are tricky, so expect Nash to be out a while longer.
In almost every post here since Rick Nash went down with a concussion, the talk has been about his status, how long he will be out, and how good the Rangers will be (now that they appear to be clicking) once he returns full time. However, there has been a lot of concern about the severity of his concussion. Mum has been the word from the Rangers, and while that doesn’t necessarily mean bad things, it’s not exactly a positive either.
With concussions, the rule of thumb is no news is bad news. We here at BSB are the eternal optimists, but even we are beginning to get a little concerned about Nash’s concussion, his second in a calendar year. The Rangers have a history of being quiet about concussions, since there is never a set time table for his return. They were quiet for Marc Staal, who took almost a year to come back. They were quiet with Mike Sauer, who never came back.
As of today, Carl Hagelin is eligible to be activated off long-term injured reserve and rejoin the Rangers roster on Long Island. Hagelin, who had offseason shoulder surgery, was placed on LTIR at the start of the season. He had to sit out three weeks or ten games, whichever came first, and tonight’s game against the Islanders is the first game that he can be activated and return to the roster.
When Hagelin was placed on LTIR, the Rangers gained an additional roster spot and the salary cap space to fill his spot. With Jesper Fast’s demotion last night, the Rangers have made room on the roster for him to rejoin the team. The club will also need to clear $2.25 million in cap space. But it’s not just about sending someone down or clearing cap space, it’s clearing space among the 12 forwards to insert Hagelin back into the lineup.