With only three games left in the regular season, the Rangers have recalled forward Jesper Fast from Hartford. Fast spent eight games up with the Rangers earlier this season when New York was battling injuries, with the likes of Rick Nash, Carl Hagelin, and Ryan Callahan on the shelf. During that brief NHL stint, Fast was minus-five, and was held off the scoresheet.
This, from the release from the Rangers announcing the transaction.
Fast has registered 17 goals and 17 assists for 34 points, along with 30 penalty minutes and a plus-14 rating in 48 games with Hartford this season. He ranks third on the team in goals, seventh in assists and points, and is tied for second in plus/minus rating. He also leads the team and is tied for eighth among AHL rookies with eight power play goals.
The move probably indicates Alain Vigneault might be weighing resting a regular with the playoffs about a week away. The Rangers line seem pretty consistent (at least san Chris Kreider), and with New York already missing a top forward, now would be the time to rest a player with a nagging injury. But Fast also fills that speed niche that Kreider did, and his play has dramatically improved from where it was when he debuted with the Rangers in the opener this season. This could also be a tryout for Fast, and a chance to crack the lineup come postseason time.That would likely mean benching Derek Dorsett or Dan Carcillo, but it's a little early to handicap that decision. Either way, expect Fast to be in Tuesday when the Rangers host the Hurricanes.