After starting the season with a mighty impressive 7–1 record, the Rangers have fallen back down to earth, winners of just three of their last ten games. But their bigger concern is what happened on Saturday night, when they ended a Western Canadian road trip by not only losing their second of three games, but by losing two of their four centers to injury.
The first of the injuries came just 44 seconds into the game, when Chris Drury was blindsided by Calgary’s Curtis Glencross — a hit that wasn’t penalized, much to the dismay of Rangers coach John Tortorella. Watch the hit here and here: While Glencross certainly could have hit Drury harder, he braces himself and lowers his shoulder, hitting Drury in the head even though Drury didn’t have the puck, which is a couple kinds of illegal. Drury will be out indefinitely with a concussion.
Then, later in the game, Brandon Dubinsky blocked a Jay Bouwmeester slap shot from the point, which, according to a Newsday source, broke his hand and will sideline him for three weeks. (All of this took place, by the way, in a game that Henrik Lundqvist sat out with a nagging injury, believed to be a groin or muscle strain.) For now, the Rangers can shift some players around — Vinny Prospal can play either left wing or center — and rely on reinforcements from Hartford (P.A. Parenteau, Corey Locke, Evgeny Grachev), however thin that makes their lineup. Or they could just sign Peter Forsberg, who of course never, ever gets hurt.