Zibanejad out Wednesday, David Quinn on Lias Andersson and more

Mika Zibanejad skated on his own on Monday but will not play for the Rangers on Wednesday against the Capitals. (NYR)

Kaapo Kakko practiced and while David Quinn said that he is still not “great,” he is expected to play on Wednesday.” (NYR)

The lines the Rangers used at practice today were (Gorman):





  • Artemi Panarin, Ryan Strome, Jesper Fast
  • Chris Kreider, Filip Chytil, Pavel Buchnevich
  • Brendan Lemieux, Brett Howden, Kaapo Kakko
  • Brendan Smith, Greg McKegg, Tim Gettinger

David Quinn spoke after practice and said (NYR):

  • On the PK, “obviously we need to do a better job of understanding what our responsibilities are and whatever decisions we are making have to be quicker. One of the things we walked through today was clarifying what responsibilities are. These last two games have been a disaster from a PK standpoint and we have to be better.”
  • On practicing the PK, “It’s more dificult to emulate what you are going to see in a game but continue to create clarity in what your role is and supposed to be doing on the PK. Once you have that you make better and quicker decisions and we were just going over refreshers of what we need to do.”
  • On sending Lias Andersson to Hartford, “obviously we just want Lias to get more playing time and touch more pucks. We thought it did wonders for Fil and hoping it will do wonders for Lias as well. With Hales, it was just an opportunity to give us some roster flexibility.”
  • What do you need to see from Lias, “there has to be a consistency in his game. One of the things he has to continue to work on is playing faster. I know that is a simple answer but a lot of times it is the answer for a lot of players when they ask you what they need to do and you have to play faster. There has to be quicker play from one play to the next and it’s not just skating fast it’s playing fast and I think that the more you play the better chance you have to do that, I understand that but from a playing standpoint he has to play faster. I thought there were times he did that and he was effective and times when he wasn’t playing quite fast enough. He’s done an awful lot of good things in the last year plus, again, it’s a 21-year old going to play in the AHL to gain some confidence, play more, touch the puck more, and put him in a better position to have success.”
  • Andersson couldn’t take Kakko’s minutes at wing, “no, I didn’t. I thought McKegg was more prepared for that, he was plus six in scoring chances and played well.”
  • Did Andersson’s linemates impact his game “I get that and everyone talks about that but there are things in this game that you need to do regardless of who your linemates are. This isn’t about points, you watch a game and a player should be doing this and they are doing that, doing this quicker and they are not doing it quick enough, they should be physical and they are not physical. That has nothing to do with who your linemates are. Those are the things, and I’m not just talking about Lias, I’m talking in general. A lot of players think along those lines and, to me, it’s a big mistake. That is a big mistake if that is what a player is thinking because you should be an effective player regardless of who you are playing with, there are things this game demands and you should be able to do it regardless of who is on your wing or who your d-partner is or whoever. I understand that you may be in defensive positions more depending on who your wingers are or whatnot, but at the end of the day there is an easy evaluation process for an individual regardless of who their linemates are or d-partner is.”
  • On not seeing what is needed in practice and in games for Lias, “it’s both, he was playing 10 minutes a night and his minutes have decreased the last few games.”
  • Are you sure Andersson is a center, “We are open to everything, moving him to wing is also an option.”
  • Is there a spot right now for him at center, “I think that if he plays well there is an opportunity for him on the wing. Everything is on the table for him, if he goes down there and plays well and we bring him up, maybe we do put him at the wing. At his age I still want to give him a fair opportunity in the middle.”
  • Did you consider moving him up to spark his game, “yea. I don’t want to take one guy out that I think should be playing. It’s not just a small sample, guys build trust and a bank account where they make good plays. We certainly thought about that but didn’t do it.”
  • What between training camp and now changed for Lias, “consistency. There were shifts where I thought he did a lot of good things and there was a drop in his play, which can happen to a lot of young players. He’s no different, to me, he has to be consistently good.”
  • Do you sense Lias feels extra pressure because of his draft position, “I’m sure..without question. It’s not easy situation for any 21-year old that has all of these expectations. Once your career starts no one cares where you got drafted, you have to play.”
  • Do you have any update on Mika, “another good day today, he’s getting closer to coming back, just not sure when. Still day to day.”
  • On Kakko, “he practiced today. Still not feeling great but he’s better.”
  • On Wednesday for Mika or Kakko, “Mika won’t play Wednesday. Kakko practiced, so I’d be shocked if he doesn’t.”
  • On Brett Howden, “I think Howds is getting better and better, I liked his game the other night. One of the things, young player, consistency and playing on the right side of the puck, when he does that he’s an effective player. He’s doing that more and more, I think he’s making progress.”
  • On what Mika will be when he returns, “it will take some practices, we will see. He’s day to day, tough to give an answer. He skated this morning, felt better.”