Brendan Smith

Andrew Shaw to miss Game 6 with upper-body injury

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Facing elimination on Saturday night the Montreal Canadiens will be making a couple of changes to their lineup.

Two of them will be coaches decisions by Claude Julien. One of them will be because of injury.

Julien confirmed on Saturday afternoon that forward Andrew Shaw will not play in Game 6 due to an upper-body injury. Julien said he is considered day-to-day at this point.

“He’s a big part of our team, but obviously without him it’s an opportunity for other guys to step up,” said Canadiens forward Brendan Gallagher on Saturday to NBC’s Kaitlin Urka. “We say it all the time, guys drop out of the lineup, other guys are going to come in, very capable players and they are going to be able to do the job.”

There will be a number of new players coming into the lineup on Saturday.

Along with Shaw’s absence, the Canadiens will also be sitting forward Torrey Mitchell and defenseman Nathan Beaulieu. In their place Michael McCarron, Brian Flynn and Brandon Davidson will all draw into the lineup.

Through the first five games of the series Shaw has yet to record a point for the Canadiens and is a minus-two with seven penalty minutes. He played 13 minutes in the Canadiens’ Game 5 loss in Montreal, getting into a fight with Rangers defenseman Brendan Smith.

Aside from Shaw’s injury, the surprising move here might be Julien’s decision to take Mitchell out of the lineup because he has played fairly well in the series in his limited role. In his three games during the series he has a goal and is one of the team’s best players in the faceoff circle.

At the morning skate Flynn was centering the third line between Alex Galchenyuk and Paul Byron, while McCarron was skating on the fourth line next to Dwight King and Steve Ott.

Davidson was skating on a defense pairing alongside Jordie Benn.

Rangers sign KHL d-man Bereglazov

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New York added some defensive depth on Friday, agreeing to terms with Russian blueliner Alexei Bereglazov.

Bereglazov, 23, has spent the last few seasons with KHL club Metallurg Magnitogorsk, including a ’16-17 campaign in which he scored 19 points in 60 games. He led all d-men aged 24 or younger in assists, with 18.

Despite being passed over at the draft, Bereglazov had a good junior career, highlighted by capturing bronze for Russia at the 2014 World Juniors. He finished with two points in seven games in the tourney, playing alongside the likes of Andrei Vasilevskiy, Nikita Zadorov, Mikhail Grigorenko, Ivan Barbashev and his new Rangers teammate, Pavel Buchnevich.

It’ll be interesting to see where he fits in New York next season. The club has seven blueliners under contract — Marc Staal, Dan Girardi, Ryan McDonagh, Kevin Klein, Nick Holden, Brady Skjei and Steve Kampfer — with Brendan Smith a pending UFA, and Adam Clendening a pending RFA.

 

Rangers end home woes, tie series with Canadiens

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The New York Rangers dropped their sixth straight playoff game at Madison Square Garden in Game 3 against the Montreal Canadiens, and it wasn’t pretty. They buried that stat on Tuesday, though.

Henrik Lundqvist went from frustrated late in the first period to pumping his fist at the end, guiding the Rangers to a tight 2-1 win against the Canadiens. With that, the intriguing first-round series shifts back to Montreal at a 2-2 tie.

Sometimes, it’s easy to sell a transformation just by looking at the shots on goal, even if that can also be overly simple:

Game 2: Rangers – 38 shots on goal, Canadiens – 58 SOG
Game 3: Rangers – 21 SOG, Canadiens – 29 SOG
Game 4: Rangers – 32 SOG, Canadiens – 24 SOG

As other teams see leads evaporate to dizzying degrees, the Rangers managed to protect a 2-1 lead generated by Rick Nash just 4:28 into the second period. That feels like a lifetime by recent standards.

Watch Rangers vs. Canadiens: Game 5 on Thursday (7 p.m. ET, USA, NBC Sports app)

There was some nasty stuff at times in this Game 4, with Brendan Smith ranking among those who take the most abuse. With this series going to a minimum of six contests and almost every match being tight, this one could get nasty.

The goalies have delivered as advertised, too.

A lot going on – fight included – between Corey Perry, Brendan Smith (Video)

If there’s one thing that’s undeniable from the clip going on, it’s that Corey Perry and Brendan Smith squeezed a lot of activity (carnage?) into a single shift.

Early on in Sunday’s New York Rangers – Anaheim Ducks game, both player delivered hits that were at least borderline dangerous. After that, they traded punches in a pretty solid fight (especially since they seemed a little tired because, again, this was a fairly elaborate sequence).

It’s way too messy a sequence to call neat, but there is something efficient about trading hits and then getting into a fight. That’s a mini-hockey feud in short order.

If you want a pretty moment to counteract all that, check out the great puck movement on this 3-on-1 goal for the Rangers:

No Lundqvist, Nash or Grabner for banged-up Rangers tonight

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The Blueshirts are limping into this evening’s tilt with Carolina.

Starting netminder Henrik Lundqvist is sidelined with a lower-body injury. Leading goalscorer Michael Grabner will miss his fifth straight contest with a hip ailment. Alternate captain Rick Nash is out with a lingering upper-body issue.

So what sayeth you, J.T. Miller?

“People go down and people have to step into a different spot normally,” the Rangers’ leading scorer said, per the club website. “Just have to play like any other game.”

On their own, the losses are significant — but when piled on top of the guys New York was already without, it’s pretty overwhelming.

The Rangers were down the services of d-men Kevin Klein (back) and Dan Girardi (ankle), while versatile forward Jesper Fast is on the shelf with a separated shoulder.

As a result, head coach Alain Vingeault’s working with a patchwork lineup. The Chris KreiderDerek StepanMats Zuccarello line will remain intact, while Miller will jump to fill Nash’s spot alongside Pavel Buchnevich and Mika Zibanejad.

Matt Puempel, a healthy scratch recently, will draw back in and play alongside Jimmy Vesey and Kevin Hayes. That leaves Tanner Glass, Oscar Lindberg and Brandon Pirri on the fourth line.

On defense, it’ll be Marc Staal, Ryan McDonagh, Brendan Smith, Nick Holden, Brady Skjei and Steve Kampfer.

Antti Raanta will get the start, while ECHL recall Brandon Halverson will back up.