6:28PM: In a Q&A session, John Davidson said the following about having/not having a captain:
- “My belief, and I can speak from experience as a player -was with some great captains, as a person in management I’ve been with organizations that didn’t have a captain for a long period of time. The biggest key is to get the right guy, not to be shortsighted and just give it to somebody with seniority or someone along those lines. If you feel that your club has collective leadership and hand out three “A”s and not worry about the “C.” If you make a mistake by giving the “C” to someone, it’s not a healthy situation. You’ve got to make sure and take your time. It’s not an emergency to fill that role, there have been lots of teams that have done well without having a Captain. We will continue to assess this thing, one day it’s going to pop and ‘this person is the person.’ We have guys, with others gone on, we have guys that are going to pop all over the place. I’m satisfied with where we are, I think it will take care of itself in time.”
6:10PM: David Quinn said on Wednesday (MSG):
- On Mika’s status for tomorrow, “I haven’t talked to our training staff yet. He certainly looked like he was ready to go today, but we’ll have a clearer picture of what that is going to be. As for as his minutes go, just be monitoring him during the game. Everyone knows he had Covid and everyone reacts differently to it, that will be a shift by shift decision.”
- Do you know that the team is ready for tomorrow, “We feel really good about where we are at, I really liked our camp, I loved our practice today….the bottom line is that our sport is an effort driven sport because the guys play in such a small space and effort is going to be the deciding factor a lot of nights..”
- Will you have a captain, “As of now we have four assistant captains Mika Zibanejad, Chris Kreider, Jacob Trouba and Artemi Panarin. That was just announced, right after practice, to the players.”
- What did you love about your camp, “I loved our mental and physical commitment, guys were dialed in, trying to accomplish the things we were going over, they were paying attention. I loved our pace, the effort was outstanding, both physically and mentally. A lot of times you get the physical effort but mentally guys get a little wayward. I just like the combination of our focus and our effort physically.”
12:17PM: Igor Shesterkin will start for the Rangers tomorrow as they open the 2021 season against the Islanders. (NYR)
This will be the first time that Henrik Lundqvist has not started on Opening Night since 2005-06.
Mika Zibanejad is expected to play as well. (NYR)
Zibanejad only had his first practice of training camp on Monday. He had missed camp due to Covid-19.
The Rangers will have four alternate captains: Mika Zibanejad, Chris Kreider, Jacob Trouba and Artemi Panarin. (NYR)
Trouba and Panarin will the slots left by Jesper Fast and Marc Staal.
Zibanejad and Kreider are alternate captains for the third straight season.
The Rangers have not had a Captain since Ryan McDonagh was traded in February 2018. It is the longest streak since 1957, when the Rangers went four seasons without a captain.