Friday was a busy day for the New York Rangers with the most recent move being the recall of Brandon Halverson.
Halverson will back up Henrik Lundqvist this weekend as Alexandar Georgiev is sick with the flu.
The Rangers’ second round pick from the 2014 draft has split the season between the Hartford Wolf Pack in the AHL and the Greenville Swamp Rabbits of the ECHL. He has appeared in three games with the Wolf Pack posting a 1-2-0 record with a 3.68 GAA and a .892 SV%. Additionally, Halverson has made 22 appearances with Greenville this season, posting a 7-11-2 record with a 3.87 GAA and a .900 SV%
Earlier today it was also announced that Pavel Buchnevich will return to the lineup vs. the Ottawa Senators on Saturday afternoon. His return to the lineup would have led to the scratch of a forward, but Georgiev’s illness meant the team needed to free up a roster spot. The Rangers were at their limit of 23, and the resulting transaction saw Vinni Lettieri get sent down.
OFFICIAL: Hayes (maintenance) and Georgiev (flu) are not practicing.— New York Rangers (@NYRangers) February 16, 2018
Lettieri was assigned to @WolfPackAHL.
Alain Vigneault also said that Kevin Hayes, who didn’t practice, was less than 50 percent to play on Saturday afternoon.
AV said Hayes is "less than 50 percent" to play tomorrow against the Senators. https://t.co/8on6Omhm18— New York Rangers (@NYRangers) February 16, 2018
With that knowledge you would think that the Rangers would have just kept Lettieri up, but there is more to the story.
Vigneault explained that need to recall goaltender and compliance with 23-player roster max forced team to send Lettieri to Hartford...only F who could go without needing waivers. Not everything the coach does is wrong, by the way.— Larry Brooks (@NYP_Brooksie) February 16, 2018
Lettieri is currently exempt for waivers which allowed the Rangers to directly send him down and open up a roster spot for Halverson. If Hayes can’t play then Paul Carey would be the next man up.
The Rangers are shuffling bodies like crazy, and I’d imagine things will only get crazier once the team starts making trades.