Kevin Hayes, who sits third on the Rangers with 35 points, will miss the next couple of weeks with a lower-body ailment, the club announced on Monday.
The news comes one day after Hayes exited New York’s 1-0 OT win over Detroit after playing just 8:41. Per Newsday, it’s a left leg ailment.
It’s a tough blow for a guy that had been playing well lately. Hayes had been a point-per-game producer in January, with two goals and five assists through seven games, developing chemistry on a line with Michael Grabner and J.T. Miller.
If there’s a silver lining here, it’s the schedule. Hayes’ absence will coincide with the All-Star break, so he won’t miss as many games as he would’ve under usual circumstances.
Still, if he’s shelved for the full three weeks, that puts his return around Feb. 13 — meaning he could miss up to eight contests.
In related news, the Blueshirts activated Matt Puempel off IR today. He’d been out since December with a concussion.