Rangers Happy to See Crosby Back; Staal Travels With Team

In case you’ve been held in captivity for the past 48 hours, Pittsburgh Penguins superstar Sidney Crosby returned to action last night, telling two goals and four points in a 5-0 shellacking of the New York Islanders.

On Tuesday night at Madison Square Garden, the Rangers will get to welcome Sid the Kid back firsthand. Some Blueshirts said they’re happy to see the face of the NHL back and playing healthy.

“He’s the best player in the league,” said Brad Richards, to Newsday. “The best player in the league doesn’t always win the Stanley Cup. They’re beatable. It’ll be tougher with him. It’s good for him, especially. Forget about the game. If he’s happy, which obviously he is that he’s back on the ice, and he’s health, that’s what’s important. He’s a good guy.”

Henrik Lundqvist agreed with Richards. “It’s great to have him back,” Lundqvist said. “It’s real impressive to see how he came back in his first game. He’ll be the difference in a lot of games. Overall, it’s good for everybody to have him back. You want the best players to play.”

According to Blueshirtsunited.com, Marc Staal traveled with the team to Florida for Wednesday night’s tilt with the Southeast division leading Panthers. Both Wojtek Wolski and Mike Rupp also made the trip to the Sunshine State.

First on Crosby. Although I hate him, I was happy to see him come back. He’s still just 24, and it would be a shame for a guy so young to be stripped of what he loves to do. With that said, I’m not too excited to have to play him six times this season.

As for Staal, this doesn’t mean much, but it is good news. You have to figure if Staal was still feeling ill, he would not be taking a plane ride to Florida. Does this mean he’ll be in the lineup next week? No, but it is a positive sign. I’ll be honest, I kind of forgot Rupp is even on this team.

Follow Matt on Twitter @MattCalamia

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