Rangers suffer yet another injury ahead of second pre-season exhibition game

NYR, Rangers, New York Rangers, Filip Chytil
Feb 6, 2023; New York, New York, USA; New York Rangers center Filip Chytil (72) during the second period against the Calgary Flames at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Danny Wild-USA TODAY Sports

New York Rangers forward Filip Chytil has reportedly left practice early with what is labeled as an upper-body injury, per Vince Mercogliano. This is now the third injury that the Rangers have had since beginning training camp and the pre-season, preceded by Mika Zibanejad and Brennan Othmann.

Zibanejad is now skating in a no-contact jersey while Othmann appears to be back at full health, but this new injury creates another issue for the Rangers ahead of tonight’s preseason matchup against the New York Islanders.

Filip Chytil is day-to-day with an upper-body injury

It’s unclear how the injury occurred, but the Rangers have labeled Chytil as day-to-day. Although there has been recent controversy last season with how the Blueshirts’ organization has labeled their injuries, Zibanejad and Othmann did appear to truly only be out for a few days. Hopefully, Chytil is in a similar situation, as he is one of the key centers in the current Blueshirts’ lineup.

Chytil was listed as a member of today’s practice group for the Rangers, a strong indication that he would not be partaking in tonight’s pre-season game against the Islanders.

Although the lineup for tonight has not yet been released, it’s heavily implied that the matchup will feature many of the regulars not participating in practice. It’s best that Chytil receives any medical attention that he needs immediately and remains out of preseason until he too is back to full health.

Chytil could aim for the Rangers’ second line this season

Throughout training camp and preseason thus far, Chytil has been receiving an abundance of time in the Blueshirts’ top six. Nobody will replace Zibanejad as the first-line center for a long time, but there has been the possibility of Chytil swapping with Vincent Trocheck and moving up to the second line.

Rangers head coach Peter Laviolette has been experimenting with Chytil a lot so far, testing out a second line consisting of Artemi Panarin, Chytil, and Kaapo Kakko. This line combination seemed to align quite nicely, but Laviolette will not have the ability to test any further until Chytil is back to health.

It is essential that Chytil returns to the ice as quickly as possible. Although the full details of the injury have not been released, a day-to-day label is the best possible outcome of any injury.

An upper-body injury can be described as any injury above the player’s waist, so the Rangers must hope that it is nothing too serious. Chytil certainly has a lot to prove in the 2023-24 season and he must start hot if the Blueshirts want to succeed.

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