Some updates from a short, fairly giddy session at the MSG Training Center:
<li>The Rangers began the long weekend in ninth place and woke up today in sixth. A question for players: is home-ice advantage back on their radar? “We still think we can win the division,” Scott Gomez said. “We want to win the division.”
More on this topic for tomorrow’s paper…
<li>Marc Staal resumed skating with his teammates today, and will take part in an optional skate tomorrow in Montreal. Tom Renney will determine then whether the rookie is fit to play against the Canadiens. But given the coach’s track record, I wouldn’t be surprised if he stuck with his current lineup if Staal is at all in question.
<li>Petr Prucha also skated, albeit in the dreaded mustard yellow no contact jersey. He is day-to-day, but out for tomorrow (which I guess means he is not quite day-to-day).
<li>Colton Orr is indeed sporting a new mohawk, leading to the revelation from Henrik Lundqvist that he had one as well in his younger days. It’s doubtful any of those mohawks were as bad as the one I had as an undersized freshman football player. Thankfully, the pictures didn’t survive.
<li>Another day, another quick exit from Sean Avery. The left wing was perfectly cordial when I approached him, even if declining to talk and quickly heading for the back. On second thought, maybe that doesn’t quite fit the definition of “perfectly cordial.” But it’s not like he’s outwardly pouting. Either way, it’s strange…
<li>A strange sight was Ryan Callahan, Jason Strudwick, Martin Straka, Scott Gomez and others all glued to the TV watching bowling in the fitness room. Slow day for TV, I guess….