Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Daily Recap: Callahan, Girardi Back, Others Close; Keys To Stay In Playoffs; Should Staal Keep “A”?

Lots of news coming out of the Rangers first practice back from the All-Star break and for a change it was all of the positive variety when it comes to the health of the roster.  Early in practice it was clear that both Ryan Callahan and Dan Girardi were back and would be playing tomorrow.  With the return of Callahan it meant that there were going to be new lines, which are in the linked story along with my thoughts on those combinations.

Along with that there was the positive news that Brandon Dubinsky, Vinny Prospal and Erik Christensen were all taking part in practice.  Originally due to the orange jerseys they were wearing it was thought they were just there in a non-contact capacity to take the skate, and do drills, but obviously without contact.  Later in practice it was revealed that they were fully participating in practice which was somewhat surprising for all three.  In terms of Dubinsky it has only been two weeks since he was said to be out a month with a stress fracture.  For Prospal he had yet to take part in a contact practice this season.  With Christensen there was no set time on when he would be back practicing.

The good news only got better as following practice Dubinsky, Prospal, Christensen and Fedotenko were all given scheduled return dates or timetables on when to expect them back in the lineup.  All four are expected back in short order with one possibly against the Pens and one definitely against the Devils.

Other than all of that good news there were a couple stories on the site today.  The morning I took a look at eight keys to keep the Rangers in the playoffs these last 30 games.  Half of the list consisted of things that the team needed to sustain from the first “half” and the rest were things that needed to improve.  One of them is already looking much better and they have not even played a game yet.

The other story was about Marc Staal, Vinny Prospal and the “A” that Staal got when the Rangers realized Prospal was going to be out long term.  Based on certain things it appears that the “A” is going to go back to Prospal as soon as he is in the lineup, but should it?