Happy Friday, folks. We've got some more hockey to watch today, as the Rangers preseason campaign rolls into Chicago. Thursday wasn't the most excited day in terms of Rangers news, especially after the whirlwind that was Wednesday. Any who, let's get to those morning notes.
Going to be a lot of items in today's notes again surrounding Derek Stepan, and what the Rangers will do in his absence. Who might get the promotion to play on the top line? How about Dominic Moore. [Blueshirt Banter]
And ahead of the Rangers-Blackhawks showdown on Friday, New York released what its lines should look like, giving another glimpse into how the team is experimenting and tinkering to fill Stepan's spot, as well as some more information from Alain Vigneault. [Blueshirt Banter] [Ranger Rants] [Daily News] [Newsday]
One thing we learned from that released lineup is Anthony Duclair will continue to get opportunities alongside Derick Brassard and Rick Nash, as the organization continues to show its trust and interest in the 19-year-old. [NY Post]
Another player who may see more minutes and in that sense benefit from Stepan's absence? That'd be the rookie and recently signed Kevin Hayes. [NY Post]
If you're following some of the other injury news around the league, you may have seen Jordan Staal of the Hurricanes broke his leg, and is going to require surgery that will keep him out 3-4 months. So it kind of goes without saying, and Stepan knows it: The Rangers top center dodged a major bullet. [Ranger Rants]