The headline in the New York Post read:
“Uh-oh, Rangers: October Rick Nash looks like playoff Rick Nash.”
Nash has failed to score in each of the Rangers’ first seven games, so the playoff comparison is an easy one to make. The 31-year-old winger has just 10 goals in 60 career postseason games, with a shooting percentage of 4.8.
“I’m definitely frustrated,” Nash told The Post. “You want to help and you want to contribute, and I’m always aware that for me, that means scoring goals.”
While Nash does feel that he’s “creating chances” — and the 24 shots he’s registered are reasonable evidence of that — “it’s frustrating because I’m not putting pucks in the back of the net.”
Which, again, sounds a lot like the playoffs.
Nash isn’t the only Ranger that’s failing to convert. Chris Kreider has 18 shots and no goals.
Here are the forwards who have managed to score:
Related: Five guys who can’t buy a goal
The Chicago Blackhawks are about to face some serious adversity.
The club announced this morning that defenseman Duncan Keith has undergone successful surgery to repair a meniscal tear in his right knee.
Keith — the 2015 recipient of the Conn Smythe Trophy as playoff MVP — is expected to miss 4-6 weeks.
The Blackhawks (3-3-0) play 15 games over the next month. If Keith is out the full six weeks, he could miss a quarter of the regular season, give or take a few games.
Here’s how the ice time has been allocated on the Chicago defense so far this season:
Columbus backup Curtis McElhinney will be back between the pipes tonight when the 0-6-0 Blue Jackets host the Islanders.
“Curtis played great in Chicago and has earned another opportunity to play,” coach Todd Richards told reporters.
McElhinney got his first start of the season, replacing the struggling Sergei Bobrovsky, Saturday against the Blackhawks and stopped 26 of 29 shots in a 4-1 loss.
It goes without saying that tonight is another massive game for the Jackets. Lose in regulation and they’ll be 0-7-0 as they start a four-game trip through Minnesota, Colorado, New Jersey and Washington.
Related: Bobrovsky admits he has ‘zero confidence right now’
Senators forward Bobby Ryan is hoping some practice time will help things come together for him and his linemates, Mika Zibanejad and Milan Michalek.
Michalek is the latest left winger to skate with Ryan and Zibanejad, replacing the injured Clarke MacArthur.
“Even through training camp, Mika and I only skated together in one game,” Ryan told the Ottawa Citizen. “It wasn’t consistent, it was a bit messy. So now we’re having a week here where we can get some reps, get some flow, some 2-on-1s, 3 on 2s, and build from there.”
The Sens don’t play again until Thursday. When they do, they’d love to get some production beyond the first line of Mike Hoffman, Kyle Turris and Mark Stone. That trio has combined for eight even-strength goals. Everyone else combined has five.
Ryan has one goal in six games, and just 11 shots total. For a cap hit of $7.25 million, that’s not enough.
Michalek, with a cap hit of $4 million, has yet to score at even strength, though he does have a pair of power-play goals.
Shea Theodore’s NHL debut will have to wait. The 20-year-old defenseman was returned to AHL San Diego today by the Anaheim Ducks.
Theodore was called up Saturday, along with defenseman Korbinian Holzer, when d-men Simon Despres and Clayton Stoner were placed on injured reserve.
Holzer remains on the NHL roster after dressing in the Ducks’ 4-1 win over Minnesota on Sunday.
Anaheim doesn’t play again until Thursday in Nashville. No word if Despres or Stoner are close to returning.
Theodore was drafted 26th overall in 2013. He was a prolific scorer during his time in junior with the WHL’s Seattle Thunderbirds and is just now getting his feet wet as a pro.