After getting hurt in his first and only appearance of the Eastern Conference Final, J.T. Miller is still not quite ready to rejoin the Rangers.
On Sunday, Miller didn’t practice with teammates — but did go for a solo skate prior — and his status for Game 1 of the Stanley Cup Final on Wednesday remains unclear, according to head coach Alain Vigneault, who told the Bergen Record that Miller’s “a couple more days” from returning.
Miller, the Rangers’ first-round pick (15th overall) at the 2011 NHL Entry Draft, was hurt during Game 4 of the Montreal series after Andrei Markov pushed him into the Habs’ net in the second period:
The 21-year-old tried to return to play but was eventually forced to leave with the aforementioned shoulder ailment, and finished with just three minutes of ice time. Much like the regular season, Miller has been in and out of the Ranger lineup for most of the playoffs, making two appearances in the Flyers series, one in the Penguins series and one in the Canadiens series.
Mike Babcock admitted that there might be a painful transformation as he tries to fix the Toronto Maple Leafs.
His old friends made that abundantly, painfully clear on Friday.
As of this writing, the Detroit Red Wings are up 4-0 on the Buds. Justin Abdelkader just completed a hat trick with James Reimer in net, so the subplot isn’t just about Jonathan Bernier having another tough start.
The big story might just be Detroit’s varied new line of Abdelkader, Dylan Larkin (who scored his first career goal) and Henrik Zetterberg. At the moment, they’ve combined for seven points.
This post will be updated if Detroit’s tribute video to Babcock surfaces.
Really, though, this beating has been about as ugly as this blanket so far.
It wouldn’t be a regular season game without a Columbus Blue Jackets injury, right?
OK, the Blue Jackets hope that 2015-16 looks different from the medically challenged mess of last season, but at least one player is banged up tonight.
Alexander Wennberg suffered an upper-body injury and won’t return on Friday, as the team noted.
There’s no word yet regarding how serious the issue might be. It looks like he might have suffered an injury thanks to a Chris Kreider check:
Naturally, the Blue Jackets must hope that this doesn’t begin another trend.