Rangers kicked off their first trip of the season with a pair of Pittsburgh games starting Friday night before heading to Buffalo for two more.
“Obviously, when you have a crowd in the building, it changes the whole dynamic of the game, I think there will be a little difference,” head coach David Quinn said on Wednesday. “But let’s hope one of the things was pretty good in the second half of the year, we were a pretty good road team. If we can continue this trend that we started last year. “
Before the coronavirus pandemic halted the 2019-20 regular season last March, the Rangers had set a 10-1-1 record in their last 12 away games. In a tight schedule of 56 games this season, Rangers is set to play 28 times on the road.
While the NHL has readjusted divisions to reduce travel, there are many protocols in place to limit player interaction not only with the public but also with each other. The capital was fined $ 1
Shortly afterwards, Alex Ovechkin, Evgeniy Kuznetsov, Dmitry Orlov and Ilya Samsonov were placed on the league’s list of players who were not available to play or train in accordance with their coronavirus guidelines. Everyone will miss at least the next four games in Washington.
Quinn said the Rangers coaching staff had turned to the Capitals’ fine and reiterated how important it was to follow road records this season.
“Obviously we turned to what happened to Washington, we talked about it as a team [Thursday], “he said.” Of course, when we get to Pittsburgh, we’ll remind them of the details and go through the whole protocol when we get to Pittsburgh. “
Artemi Panarin took to Instagram on Thursday to show his support for Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny ahead of planned protests in his home country this weekend.
The star’s wing published a photo of Navalny, his wife and their two children, with the caption, which was translated as “Freedom for Navalny.”
A prominent critic of Russian President Vladimir Putin, Navalny was poisoned with a nerve agent in August and spent his recovery in a hospital in Germany. When Navalny returned to Russia on Sunday, he was immediately arrested and sent to a Moscow prison, where he had to await trial for allegedly violating his probation conditions in a 2014 embezzlement case.
The Blackhawks defender and his Russian counterpart Nikita Zadorov published Panarin’s report on Thursday.
Igor Shesterkin will start in the net for Rangers on Friday against the Penguins.
Brendan Lemieux, Brett Howden and Julien Gauthier took a few reps as the fourth line in practice on Thursday. But later Kevin Rooney replaced Gauthier and centered Lemieux and Howden, with Colin Blackwell turning.
“We haven’t made that decision yet,” Quinn said of the fourth line. “Julien obviously shows a lot of great characteristics, he’s big, he’s strong, he can skate. I just think he is still learning the game of the NHL, systematically, understanding certain situations, putting a lot of time and effort into it. “
Rangers have appointed Morgan Barron and Matthew Robertson from the taxi team to the team’s AHL branch in Hartford. Wolf Pack training camp is already underway.