The New York Rangers have had their toughness questioned in recent weeks and that criticism, combined with injuries to Michael Grabner and Kevin Klein, has resulted in the team recalling Tanner Glass and Steven Kampfer from Hartford of the AHL following their 4-1 loss to the Montreal Canadiens on Saturday night.
Kampfer’s recall makes some sense given Klein’s uncertainty, and it can’t hurt to have an extra defenseman with the team, especially with no roster limit after the trade deadline.
But Glass is the name that is going to get the the most attention here because he became a pretty polarizing player among Rangers fans during his first couple of years with the team. The organization obviously loves the physical play he provides, but aside from that physical play there really isn’t much that he is bringing to the table. That should be a concern for Rangers fans if Alain Vigneault decides to insert him back into the lineup.
With the way the NHL game is evolving there really isn’t much room for fourth-liners that can only hit people and throw their weight around. If anything, one of the Rangers’ greatest strengths this season has been the fact they have been able to use three or four lines that are all capable of providing offense.
Their biggest weakness has been their defense, and their lack of ability to generate offense from there and move the puck. Toughening up your fourth line isn’t really going to solve that.
Glass has spent the entire season in the AHL to this point and has six goals and nine assists in 57 games. In his first two years with the Rangers he had five goals and 13 points in 133 games.
Kampfer has played two games in the NHL this season (one with Florida, one with the Rangers) and last appeared for the Rangers on Feb. 28 against the Washington Capitals.
OTTAWA, Ontario — Ottawa Senators goaltender Cam Talbot is expected to be out five to seven weeks with what the team called an upper-body injury.
The Senators initially called Talbot day to day with what they hoped was a minor injury. Instead he’s now expected to miss at least the first month of the NHL season.
Ottawa claimed goalie Magnus Hellberg off waivers from the Seattle Kraken upon announcing Talbot’s expected absence. Hellberg, who played for Sweden at the Beijing Olympics could split time with countryman Anton Forsberg while Talbot is out.
The Senators acquired Talbot from Minnesota during the offseason to make him their starter after the Wild opted against bringing him back along with Marc-Andre Fleury. Talbot, 35, had a 2.76 goals-against average and .911 save percentage this season.
Losing Talbot is a blow to the Senators, who also acquired winger Alex DeBrincat from Chicago and signed longtime Philadelphia Flyers captain Claude Giroux as part of a move toward contending and ending their playoff drought.
CHICAGO — Blackhawks forward Boris Katchouk will be sidelined for four to six weeks with a left ankle sprain, the team announced.
The 24-year-old Katchouk played almost 12 minutes during a 3-0 preseason loss to Detroit on Saturday night. He was acquired in a multiplayer trade with Tampa Bay in March.
The Blackhawks open the season on Oct. 12 at Colorado.
The team also said forward Jujhar Khaira is day to day with a right ankle injury.
ANAHEIM, Calif. — Ducks defenseman Urho Vaakanainen was taken off the Honda Center ice on a stretcher after he crashed into the end boards in the first period of Anaheim’s preseason game against the San Jose Sharks.
The Finnish defenseman was conscious and alert with full movement in his extremities at UCI Medical Center, the Ducks said.
The frightening incident occurred midway through the opening period when Vaakanainen smashed into the boards at a dangerous speed behind the Sharks’ net. Vaakanainen appeared to be concentrating on the pass he had just made to Derek Grant, who scored the Ducks’ opening goal on the assist.
Vaakanainen’s teammates came onto the ice and gathered around him as he was taken away on the stretcher.
The Ducks acquired the 23-year-old Vaakanainen from Boston last March in the deal that sent longtime Ducks defenseman Hampus Lindholm to the Bruins. After recording two assists in 14 games for the Ducks last season, Vaakanainen is attempting to win a top-six role on Anaheim’s defense this fall.
TAMPA, Fla. — The Tampa Bay Lightning and team owner Jeff Vinik are donating $2 million toward Hurricane Ian relief efforts.
The NHL team announced that $1 million each will be donated by the Tampa Bay Lightning Foundation and the Vinik Family Foundation.
“This is a tragic situation for many families and communities across the state of Florida, but especially so in the southwest region of the state,” Vinik said in a statement released by the team. “In times like these the most important thing we can do is support one another, and we hope this donation will help families recover and rebuild in the months to come.”
Ian made landfall Wednesday on Florida’s Gulf Coast, south of the Tampa Bay area. The Lightning postponed two home preseason games and moved the club’s training camp to Nashville, Tennessee, during the storm.