Rangers suffer two injuries ahead of pre-season opener

New York Rangers center Mika Zibanejad (93) skates against the San Jose Sharks during the second period at Madison Square Garden
Oct 20, 2022; New York, New York, USA; New York Rangers center Mika Zibanejad (93) skates against the San Jose Sharks during the second period at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Danny Wild-USA TODAY Sports

The New York Rangers are set to begin the 2023-24 pre-season tonight against the Boston Bruins tonight at 5:00 EST. The roster set to hit the ice against the Bruins is composed mainly of prospects from within the Rangers’ system, but there are a few big-name players who will look to get into their regular-season groove right away. Earlier this morning, it was reported that two key players on the Blueshirts had sustained injuries and will not be participating in today’s matchup.

Rangers’ top center is already out day-to-day

According to head coach Peter Laviolette, Mika Zibanejad has already been ruled out with a day-to-day injury. During a scrimmage at practice, Zibanejad was seen holding his arm as he skated off the ice and into the locker room. Although it did not seem like a major injury right away, it’s possible that it could be too soon to get a full analysis on the severity of the damage.

The Rangers have had some controversy with labeling their injuries in the recent past. Last season, star defenseman Ryan Lindgren received a day-to-day status, but he eventually ended up missing a large portion of the year. It’s heavily implied that the mishandling of the Lindgren injury led to the eventual firing of head athletic trainer Jim Ramsay.

Hopefully, this Zibanejad injury is truly as minor as Laviolette describes, and the star center will be able to hit the ice sometime before the regular season begins. Zibanejad is one of the Rangers’ leaders and top point producers, having scored 91 points last season.

It will be essential for the Rangers to get Zibanejad back as quickly as possible, but they must also ensure that he is at full health before allowing him to play again. Updates will be sure to follow as the Rangers’ medical staff can get a full analysis on the injury.

Brennan Othmann is out with an upper-body injury

It has also been reported that top Rangers’ prospect Brennan Othmann is day-today as well. As of now, it is unclear what the timetable of his return will be, but it’s certain that he will not participate in either practice or the pre-season opener tonight.

This injury is devastating for Othman’s chances of making the Rangers’ roster early this season. As one of the few prospects who had the potential to crack the opening night roster, the young star needed as much time to prove himself as possible to the organization.

Similarly to Zibanejad, there is very little detail on the severity of the injury. An upper-body injury is a very loose term, as Othmann could have been hurt anywhere from the waist up. Othmann must aim for a speedy recovery if he plans on making a case for NHL status before the regular season gets underway in just a few weeks.

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