No I am not on anything as I write this article. You read the title right.
It is being reported out of Minnesota that Marian Gaborik is definitely not playing tomorrow night on Long Island and is questionable for his return to Minnesota when the New York Rangers visit the Wild on Friday. Read the article here.
Are Ranger fans calling the suicide hotline? Crowding the edge of the Brooklyn Bridge? Well they should not be. In fact it is a good thing that Gaborik has gotten a little hurt.
Every preview of the Rangers during the offseason said they would be fine as long as Gaborik stayed healthy. After a hot start it seemed all of this was forgotten. But after a collision in last night's game against the Phoenix Coyotes the issue has been thrust back to the forefront. So why do I think this is good?
Well now Ranger fans get to see how good this team really is. Gaborik adds an entirely different element to every game he is in and has saved the Rangers a couple of times already. Yet after the sloppy play of the last week or so the Rangers will now be forced to rely on each other rather than a superstar if they want to win. We are going to see what this Ranger team is really made of. Head Coach John Tortorella probably will never admit it but I bet there is a little bit of excitement in him knowing that this team will have to face adversity in playing without Marian Gaborik.
If the injury is just minor, keeping Gaborik out is a good idea. Missing two games like this will not be a major factor this early in the season. If this was the last week of the season and in a tight playoff race I would be worried but this is game 13. Ranger fans need to take a deep breath and realize the depth will be able to handle not having Gaborik. Enver Lisin has been coming on lately with five points in the last five games. Christopher Higgins is still looking for his first goal of the season. Getting him a chance on a top six line with someone like Vinny Prospal or Brandon Dubinsky may help him get off his slump.
So do not jump off the bridges Ranger fans. This team has plenty of talent to overcome the loss of Marian Gaborik for one or two games. If this was a long term injury then I may be worrying. But no Gaborik for two games against two teams at the bottom of the standings in the NHL? I'm not freaking out and neither should you.
As for last night, the Rangers took round 1 against Phoenix. The Coyotes showed up very little for the game, except for a stretch in the 2nd period. They showed how good they can be but also how terrible. I was hoping for a closer game but just to see the Coyotes live again was nice. Getting news that Jerry Moyes has agreed to sell the team to the NHL was another piece of news that came in. You can check out the details here. It is expected that Ice Edge will have control of the team by November 2nd.
Round 2 for the Coyotes and Rangers comes in January at Jobing.com Arena. Will be a much different matchup by then I am sure.