New York Rangers Smart Resting Kevin Klein Until Playoffs


According to SNYRangersNew York Rangers‘ head coach, Alain Vigneault, in an interview on ESPN radio, said that Rangers’ right-handed defenseman, Kevin Klein, is getting closer and closer to returning to the Rangers’ starting lineup, however, Klein’s return will not be until Game 1 of the 1st round of the playoffs.

New York Rangers
New York Rangers /

New York Rangers

With two games left in the regular season, the goal was to have Klein play in at least one of those games, in order for him to shake off the rust from missing 4+ weeks, however, not playing Klein until Game 1 of the 1st round of the playoffs is a very smart decision.

Remember that Klein’s injury was a broken arm. Broken bones take 4-6 weeks to fully heal and it is not wise to insert someone back into the starting lineup until the bone is fully healed or you risk that player breaking it again and missing another 4-6 weeks.

Losing Klein for a few playoff games could very well prove to be devastating to the Rangers’ chances of winning in the postseason, never mind missing another 4-6 weeks.

The Rangers may be finishing 1st in the Metropolitan Division, the Eastern Conference, and the entire NHL, however, that only earns you the meaningless Presidents’ Trophy. If you are not healthy, not on top of your game, and not playing at a high level then you could easily be knocked out in the 1st round of the playoffs whether you finish 1st in the NHL in the regular season or not.

To make matters worse, there is a very good chance the Rangers will face the
Boston Bruins in the 1st round of the playoffs.  A 1st round playoff matchup many would consider to be a nightmare for the Rangers.  And even if it is not the Bruins, then the Rangers will probably face either the Detroit Red Wings, Pittsburgh Penguins, or Ottawa Senators in the 1st round of the playoffs.  None of those teams that I mentioned will be easy outs, so if the Rangers are not healthy or on top of their game, don’t be shocked if they are bounced early.

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Now I am not trying to scare anyone but Rangers’ fans have to realize that this is just the reality of the NHL.  Anyone can eliminate anyone in the postseason, no matter what seed you are.

So, in my opinion, all of this is why getting Klein’s arm fully healed, and having him back in the Rangers’ starting lineup at 100% for Game 1 of the 1st round of the playoffs, is way more important than rushing him back to play in the last two regular season games, so he can shake off some rust and risk breaking his arm again.

Overall, resting Klein until Game 1 of the  smart decision on the Rangers part.

What do you think?

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