Head coach Alain Vigneault has been very unclear about New York Rangers defenseman Ryan McDonagh. Initially, the reports said McDonagh would be out indefinitely. McDonagh told the press he would be back as soon as he could, and he continues to hint that he wants to get back on the ice with the team.
McDonagh skated in a non contact jersey at practice on 9 April, 2014, though he did not skate today at the optional morning skate. He, reportedly, worked out off the ice.
AV says #NYR Ryan McDonagh is focusing on off-ice workouts today, then will skate on own tomorrow and at AM skate Saturday in Montreal…
— New York Rangers (@NYRangers) April 10, 2014
In a non-committal move, which is common for Vigneault, he said this morning that McDonagh will not play tonight and there is 50/50 chance of him playing Saturday against the Montreal Canadiens.
Without McDonagh in the line-up, the Rangers have lost two of the three games they have played. Tonight is the fourth game McDonagh will miss since the injury sustained in Vancouver. John Moore has stepped into his slot with Dan Girardi and played very well. The rest of the defense has also made great adjustments to cover the 25 minutes per game left vacant without McDonagh. Raphael Diaz has stepped into the power play role well and Kevin Klein has stepped up in a big way on the defensive side. The Rangers are guaranteed a spot in the post season at this point. The only thing they are playing for tonight and tomorrow is home ice and final seeding. All things considered, maybe McDonagh could rest up a bit more before the first round of the playoffs? Therein lies the question, should McDonagh play before the post season?