7PM: On Smith sitting, “It’s really the first time this year that a guy is sitting that probably shouldn’t be. We really feel we have 8 defensemen that can play and any time we have sat a guy up to this point it’s been an easy conversation because the play warranted it and I can’t say that about Smitty. He’s done a real good job since he’s been back, no matter who I was going to tell was going to be out, deserved to play. That is life in the NHL.” (NYR)
On Skjei, “just don’t make it as complicated as I think he has made it. I think he has gotten in his own way, overthinking situations and trying to do too much. He cares so much and wants to do so well that I think it can sometimes get in the way of productivity. Hopefully this two game stretch put him in a different mindset.” (NYR)
9:30AM: After being out for two games as a healthy scratch, Brady Skjei is expected to return to the Rangers lineup on Wednesday against the Islanders.
In 19 games this season, Skjei has 1 goal, 6 assists, a minus one rating, 25 shots on goal and an average of 21:52 per game.
On why Skjei was scratched in the first place, David Quinn said that the Rangers defenseman has looked “indecisive in all areas” and was fighting it “mentally.”
Quinn added “we have had conversations so he understands where we are at and when he is back in we expect him to be the player we know he is capable of being.”
When asked about Skjei on Tuesday, Quinn said that Skjei knows he has to be better and that there is more in his game. (NYR)
Skjei told the NY Post that he knows how he has to play to get back into the lineup and that he needs to be more aggressive and push the pace “a little more.”
Earlier in the season, Quinn said that Skjei has been trying to do too much and needs to simplify his game and “understand who he is and what he is really good at.” (NYR)
He added, “sometimes with players their greatest strength could be their greatest weakness” and that Skjei can skate himself both into and out of trouble. (NYR)
“He’s gotta get to a better place mentally, simplify things and be the defenseman we know he is capable of being.”(NYR)
Skjei said in late October that he didn’t think he was playing up to his potential and was being too cautious. (NY Post)
Skjei said that he needed to be more assertive and get his puck management and play-making back on track. (NY Post)