Rangers Roundup: Strome back; Barron sent down; Shesterkin starts; and Kakko back Friday

Rangers lineup news

By Forever Blueshirts
Igor Shesterkin
Feb 4, 2021; New York, NY, USA; New York Rangers goaltender Igor Shesterkin (31) looks to clear the puck during the second period against the Washington Capitals at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Bruce Bennett/Pool Photo-USA TODAY Sports

The New York Rangers have sent down center Morgan Barron to AHL Hartford. This news comes off the heels of Ryan Strome’s return to the lineup after missing four games due to COVID protocol.

In addition, Igor Shesterkin will get the start in goal and Julien Gauthier will be in the lineup.

New York Rangers lineup vs Flames

Ryan Strome will take his rightful place centering Artemi Panarin. Alexis Lafreniére is expected to move back up to the top line with Mika Zibanejad and Chris Kreider. Barclay Goodrow should get first crack at playing on the second line, but don’t be surprised if Sammy Blais moves up during the game.

ryan strome
Apr 25, 2021; New York, New York, USA; Ryan Strome #16 of the New York Rangers smiles during warm ups before the game against the Buffalo Sabres at Madison Square Garden on April 25, 2021 in New York City. Mandatory Credit: Elsa/Pool Photo-USA TODAY Sports

Julien Gauthier will slot on the right side with Chytil on the third line as Greg McKegg takes a seat. Igor Shesterkin will put his winning streak on the line tonight against the Flames.

The 25 year-old goalie remains hot stopping 99 of 102 shots for a .971 save percentage in his current 3 game winning streak. This season, his .953 SV% is tied for first in the NHL among goalies with at least 3 appearances.

Kaapo Kakko back Friday

Head coach Gerard Gallant is expecting Kaapo Kakko to be ready for the second and final game of the homestead against the Blue Jackets on Friday.

Kakko, 20, was injured late in the first period at Montreal. The team was still able to rattle off four straight road wins without him and Strome. That’s 1/3 of your top six not in the lineup. Pretty impressive.

This season, he has no points through three games, In fairness, he’s played only two games and a period registering 5 shots.

Hot Rangers

Adam Fox has five points in his first six games of the season bidding for back-to-back Norris Trophies. Going back to last season, his 52 points ties him for first with Tampa’s Victor Hedman.

Mika Zibanejad is on a point per game pace with 1G and 5 A through the team’s first six games.

Three Keys for victory

  • Avoid the trap of your first game back after a long road trip by keeping emotions in check and not trying to wow the home crowd
  • Ryan Strome back and on the first PP unit should settle things down and right the ship
  • Stay out of the penalty box. Calgary has some hot played in Johnny Gaudreau and Elias Lindholm coming in

NHL Hot Seat

These three teams are starting to feel the heat thanks to slow starts. Read more.