Rangers players back on the ice and other news

Some New York Rangers were back on the ice today as Phase Two began for the Blueshirts.

Although Phase Two of the Return to Play Plan was scheduled to begin on Monday, it was Tuesday when the first New York Rangers reported for informal workouts at the team’s practice facility in Greenburgh, New York.

Mollie Walker of the New York Post reported that Chris Kreider, Brendan Lemieux, Brendan Smith, Marc Staal, Adam Fox and Phil Di Giuseppe were the players were reported the first day.   Artemi Panarin is local and will be the next to report once he gets result of a coronavirus test.

Team President John Davidson and General Manager Jeff Gorton were also see at the practice facility.

The whereabouts of many of the Rangers players is not known publicly.  Igor Shesterkin and Jacob Trouba are in Florida while there is a sizable contingent of players in Europe who have already had the opportunity to work out on the ice.  Kaapo Kakko posted a video of his workout on his Instagram page.

More on the Masterton

We reported on Henrik Lundqvist’s nomination for the Bill Masterton Memorial Trophy.  Three other players with Rangers connections were nominated by hockey writers in their markets.  Colorado defenseman Ryan Graves was the nominee for the Avalanche.  Graves was the Rangers prospect who never had a chance with the Blueshirts and this season partnered with Cale Makar and led the league in plus/minus with a +40 rating.

Nathan Gerbe was the Blue Jacket’s nominee, the third time he has been nominated for the award. Gerbe is only 5’4″, the second shortest player in NHL history.  His Rangers connection is that he was signed by the Blueshirts in the summer of 2016 as a free agent, but failed to make the team out of training camp.  He was released from his contract and went to play in Europe.  His return from playing Switzerland and the impact he had on the Blue Jackets are the reason he was honored.

Jarred Tinordi is the Nashville Predator’s nominee.  His father, Mark TInordi was Ranger for 24 games in 1987-88.  Like Ryan Graves, he never stuck with the Blueshirts and went on to play 12 seasons with the Minnesota North Stars and the Washington Capitals.

The Rangers finally speak out

The Madison Square Garden Company, parent company of the Rangers and Knicks finally made a public statement about the death of George Floyd, posting a message on their Twitter account.

Before this, the Blueshirts were the only NHL team that hadn’t made a public statement, generating some criticism among fans.