New York Rangers say Tyler Motte out indefinitely, plus Kaapo Kakko close
The New York Rangers enjoyed a big divisional win over the Pittsburgh Penguins. Unfortunately, they did not come out of it unscathed as Tyler Motte was injured late in the game.
At the 12:37 mark of the third period, Anthony Angello hit a prone Motte reaching for the puck in a bent over position. The Penguins forward could’ve let up knowing that Motte didn’t see him, but instead came in hard with his hip to Motte’s shoulder.
The hit set off a scrum and led to both teams coming together at center ice when the game ended. If these two teams meet in the playoffs, that hit will be remembered by the Blueshirts.
Angello was called for interference on the play.
“He knew Motte didn’t see him,” Gerard Gallant relayed on the team’s YouTube channel. “He was in a vulnerable position and I think [Angello] took advantage of it.”
Tyler Motte injured for New York Rangers
On Friday, the team announced that Motte suffered a significant upper-body injury and there was no timetable for his return.
“I thought last night it was a blow to the head, but it was the back part of the shoulder that got him, so I don’t think it was as bad as I thought originally,” Gallant commented on the hit. I still didn’t like it.”
Gallant did stop short of saying that Motte was out for the season, stating he did not know if that was the case.
Motte, 27, has 15 points in 58 games this season, with no points in 9 games with the Rangers.
The Rangers acquired him from the Vancouver Canucks for a 4th-round pick on Trade Deadline Day (3/21). He will be a pending UFA come July 13.
With Motte out of the lineup, it should give Ryan Reaves an opportunity to get back into action.
Filip Chytil out, Kaapo Kakko and Kevin Rooney close
The Rangers also announced that Filip Chytil was out, but the head coach made it a point to say it was just “day-to-day.”
Chytil, 22, has registered 19 points in 60 games this season while being hampered with injuries he’s tried to play through. As of late, the big center has been extremely noticeable with and without the puck.
Hopefully this latest issues is minor and doesn’t set back his recent progress.
Some good news also came the Rangers way as Kaapo Kakko was back as a full practice participant.
Kakko has been out since January 21 with an upper-body injury but finally skated with the team at practice. He was a third line centered by Barclay Goodrow in place of the injured Chytil and Alexis Lafreniere on the opposite flank.
Kevin Rooney, who has been out since March 2 with an upper-body injury may also be close to returning.
“They looked really good out there and they’ve been skating a long time,” Gallant said. “Conditioning is not an issue. We’ll see what the trainers say and we’ll find out this afternoon what the plan is.”
The head coach also noted that there was definitely a chance they could play tomorrow when the Rangers host the Ottawa Senators.
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