Rangers place Shesterkin on IR, expect him to miss about a week

As hot as the Rangers are right now, losing Igor Shesterkin to an injury is very scary. After Shesterkin left Friday’s game, it didn’t look good, but the Rangers provided mostly good news a day later.

Rangers place Igor Shesterkin on IR, team will be tested for at least a week

The Rangers placed Igor Shesterkin on IR thanks to that lower-body injury. While it’s early, it’s not all bad, as the Rangers only expect Shesterkin to miss about a week.

Here’s more from Gerard Gallant:

Without Shesterkin, the Rangers short-term goalie tandem is Alexandar Georgiev and Adam Huska. Looking at the Rangers’ schedule, there could be interesting tests — even if it’s just a week.

Will the Rangers lean on Georgiev for this week’s back-to-back set, or give Huska one of two starts? If Shesterkin misses more time than expected, then it’s noteworthy that the Rangers face another back-to-back Tuesday-Wednesday set a week later.

Sat, Dec. 4 vs. Chicago
Tue, Dec. 7 @ Chicago
Wed, Dec. 8 vs. Colorado
Fri, Dec. 10 @ Buffalo
Sun, Dec. 12 vs Nashville
Tue, Dec. 14 @ Colorado
Wed, Dec. 15 @ Arizona
Fri, Dec. 17 vs. Vegas

That Dec. 17 date is included, in part, because it’s a useful cutoff point. The Rangers get what could be some important breaks after that (Dec. 17 vs. Vegas, then Dec. 22 vs. Montreal, then Dec. 27 vs. Detroit).

Can they stay hot?

The Rangers carried a five-game winning streak into Saturday’s game against the Blackhawks. They’ve also won nine of their last 10 games.

You can’t just chalk the Rangers’ success solely up to Shesterkin. That said, it will be interesting to see how the team copes without someone who’s been absolutely elite. Meanwhile, Georgiev has been almost the opposite.

Really, though, this could be a blessing in disguise.

With two games against the hit-or-miss Blackhawks, one against the Coyotes, and one vs. the Sabres, the Rangers’ schedule is generally favorable. Without Shesterkin, the Rangers might need to tighten up a bit on defense. Maybe they can shake some bad habits in the process?

All of that said, the Rangers would obviously still prefer Shesterkin to only miss a week, rather than a couple weeks, with this injury. But it definitely could’ve been worse.

James O’Brien is a writer for Pro Hockey Talk on NBC Sports. Drop him a line at phtblog@nbcsports.com or follow him on Twitter @cyclelikesedins.

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