Mika Zibanejad OUT against Ottawa (Updates)

12:51PM: David Quinn spoke on Monday and said (NYR):

  • Same lineup, “yes, same lineup.”
  • On players stepping up without Mika, “It’s really been a group effort, I think every guy has elevated their game to a level that they need to in order for us to have success, not only individually but collectively and you see the results.”
  • On the young centers, “our three young centers have done a really good job the last two games, all three of them, Chytil, Howden and Lias have really played well. Strome, we’ve talked about him having a good start to his season. You put those three guys in and they are handed a lot of responsibility against two really good hockey games and them responding the way they have is a great sign.”
  • On Fox and Hajek, “both of those guys come and work hard every day, play with enthusiasm, very coachable, two guys that have had a great pedigree. With Fox, the question was how quickly he was going to be able to adapt from a skating and competitive standpoint and that was easy and the thing I love about Hajek, he’s gotten better and better from day one this season. He had that stretch last season with five really good games and I just love the confidence he is playing with. He’s assertive, whatever he is doing he is doing it quickly and with conviction. He skates so well, he’s physical and he’s done a great job getting us out of our end.”
  • Did Hajek just need to get comfortable, “I think so, a lot of times guys want to please people so badly. He gets here, he wants to do so well for his teammates, the coaches, organization and sometimes that can be a bit too much of a burden. Once he got over that and just started playing, you can see the progression that he’s made.”
  • Has Hajek been more comfortable since Chytil returned, “I think he was trajecting that way anyone. I don’t think Fil coming here has helped him other than refresh his language.”
  • On Mika’s status, “another good day today, still day to day and making progress.”
  • Was there a chance he could have played tonight, “I don’t think so. Same drill for Tuesday, we will see.”
  • Do you see higher confidence with Georgiev, “No, I don’t think that, his play last year was the turning point for him. We got two really good goalies. Hank and I talked yesterday, he understands, you see what has happened the past three games, this has nothing to do with Hank. Hank is someone we know we are going to ride heavily and play a lot of hockey for us. This is just more circumstantial than anything. As Hank and I talked about, Hank is going to have the games Georgie is having and he’s gonna play three in a row or four in a row. This is all part of the big picture, managing the amount of games Hank is going to play. It may be a big deal that he hasn’t played three in a row but when the dust settles and 82 games have finished, Hank is going to play a lot of hockey for us.”
  • What is the plan for Marc Staal, “he’s going to get in. I’m not just saying this, we need him. Circumstances have not allowed him to get back in. The plan wasn’t to have him sit three, that is for sure but he will get back in.”
  • On Ryan Lindgren, “he’s played well, done a really good job and doing the things he’s going to need to do to be successful in this league.”
  • Why does still need to get back in, “because he’s a good defenseman and a big piece of what we have this year. He’s a guy that is influential in the locker room, a good player and the way things happened, he was the guy that came out after the Bruins game and we are just in this situation. We are going to need him.”
  • Is there a plan to rotate defenseman, “no, six best play”
  • Would you go with 7, “I’d prefer to stay away from 7.”
  • Don’t you have 7 right now with Smith, (Laugh) “Smitty is a forward now, masquerading as a defnseman on the PK every now and then.”
  • On the PK finding consistency, “I think we are going to be a good unit. I think we had two bad games this year killing penalties and I know they were 1 for 5 the other night, that is going to happen. I think we will have a good PK unit. We are young and still putting guys in roles and overall I know we are in the middle of the pack PK-wise but I think we are going to have a good PK unit. We’ve had two bad games on the PK.”
  • Are you doing morning skates because you are winning, “exactly, but we didn’t have one against Nashville so we might have to throw that theory out the window.”

11:26AM: Mika Zibanejad will not play tonight against the Ottawa Senators. (Cyrgalis)

Zibanejad has been out since last Sunday with an upper body injury but he skated on his own yesterday and was on the ice at the beginning of today’s morning skate.





Alexander Georgiev will make his third straight start, Marc Staal will be scratched and the Rangers will use the lineup that has won the past two games.