Some news away from the ice today for the New York Rangers, who have won five straight and shoot for their sixth in a row tomorrow night against the Ottawa Senators, a game in which your’s truly will be watching from section 326 at Madison Square Garden. If you’re in the area, say hello.
Before last night’s 2-1 win over the Phoenix Coyotes, head coach John Tortorella said the organization was leaning towards sending Erik Christensen and Wojtek Wolski to the AHL for a conditioning stint to get them some action. Christensen hasn’t played since before Christmas, and has only dressed for 20 contests this season, while Wolski has been a healthy scratch the past three games since returning from a groin injury he suffered very early in the season.
Since then, Christensen has agreed to heading to Connecticut. He said it was a no-brainer.
“I haven’t played a lot,” Christensen told Rangers Rants. “I love hockey. That’s more the point, I just want to play hockey. I understand there are things I need to work on but I just want to be on the ice. I’m excited to get some games again.”
Wolski said he would discuss the option with his agent, but it may not come to that just yet, as Brandon Dubinsky is a game-time decision for tomorrow night’s game. Dubinsky injured his shoulder last night after a hit from Taylor Pyatt. Although he did return to the game and finished with over 20 minutes of ice-time, his shoulder is sore.
There’s a very good chance Christensen has played his last game with the Rangers. It’s going to be extremely difficult for him to find some ice-time with this team, barring any injury. The conditioning stint has a limit of 14 days. If the Rangers want to get him more games with the AHL after that, he’ll have to pass through waivers. Even though Christensen doesn’t have much value, his approximately $500,000 contract for the team that picks him up could be too good to pass up for a team fighting for the playoffs that could use his services in the shootout.
Wolski didn’t seem like he was interested in heading to the AHL, and could have caught a break with Dubinsky getting injured. I’m hoping he doesn’t dress, but that could be the break he needed.
Simply put, no one is playing themselves out of this lineup, and when you’ve won five in a row and 10 out of 11 games, why try and fix anything? Everyone in the lineup is there for a reason, and the team is rolling right now.
Follow Matt on Twitter @MattCalamia