New York Rangers: Julien Gauthier out, Chris Kreider doubtful vs Habs

new york rangers julien gauthier
Jan 12, 2023; New York, New York, USA; New York Rangers right wing Julien Gauthier (12) skates off the ice checking his face for blood after colliding with left wing Sammy Blais (not pictured) during the first period against the Dallas Stars at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Danny Wild-USA TODAY Sports

Prior to Saturday’s practice, the New York Rangers announced that forward Julien Gauthier will be out with an upper-body injury versus the Montreal Canadiens on Sunday.

In addition, Chris Kreider is considered doubtful as he’s also nursing an upper-body injury. Although he did skate before his teammates took the ice, which is a good sign.

The Rangers also reported that forwards Artemi Panarin and Vitali Kravtsov were not practicing. Defenseman Ryan Lindgren is also unavailable as all three players are dealing with a stomach bug revealed by Gerard Gallant after the comeback win over the Dallas Stars on Thursday.

“A lot of our guys weren’t feeling great but we pushed through it and found a way to get two huge points,” he revealed. “There’s been a bug going around group. I haven’t told you about it but there’s been.”

New York Rangers Gauthier out, Kreider doubtful

New York Rangers
Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports

Kreider left Tuesday’s shootout win over the Minnesota Wild in the third period after a shoulder-to-shoulder hit by Marcus Foligno. The Rangers leading goal scorer, who is tied with Mika Zibanejad at 19, was seen favoring his left arm when he went to the locker room.

The 31 year-old has registered 30 points in 42 matches this season. He was replaced by Alexis Lafreniere on the first line for the remainder of the game, who is expected to remain there until Kreider returns.

Gauthier was injured in the first period against the Stars after an accidental collision with Sammy Blais. The 25 year-old has 9 points in 32 matches this season.

Jake Leschyshyn, whom the Rangers claimed off waivers from the Vegas Golden Knights is expected to make his debut on Sunday versus the Habs.

“I’ve seen him one year maybe two (in Vegas),” Gallant noted. “Character kid. Works hard and competitive. He did real well in minors last year and had good numbers. He’s a role player that kills penalties and plays that defensive game.”

The 23 year-old center, was taken in the second-round by the Knights in 2017. This season he has no points with 38 hits, 8 blocks, and a -7 rating.

“It’s a huge opportunity for me,” Leschyshyn said on Thursday. “I guess it’s a second chance in the NHL to try and make a name for myself here in New York. I’m obviously disappointed having been put on waivers by Vegas, but I guess emotions change pretty quick when you get picked up by a team like New York.”

Update: Jake Leschyshyn is confirmed to play on Sunday

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Anthony Scultore is the founder of Forever Blueshirts and has been covering the New York Rangers and the NHL... More about Anthony Scultore

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