We’re running late, but so is the game (a 7:30 start thanks to TSN), so let’s get on with it.
<li>As noted earlier, no lineup changes tonight, which means Dan Fritsche and Lauri Korpikoski will be the scratches. That’s two straight games in the press box for Korpikoski, which led to some speculation that the rookie was headed back to Hartford. Tom Renney essentially dismissed as much just now.
“He’s certainly demonstrated he can play in the NHL,” Renney said. “It’s as much about the opponent as anything. I like the security of having him around.”
Indeed, Korpikoski is here not only because the Rangers could very well use him again as early as Friday. It’s also to serve as a reminder to someone like Aaron Voros that he could be replaced at any moment. Personally, I think Korpikoski deserves to be playing every night, but it’s at least encouraging to hear the team isn’t shipping him out of town.
<li>As for Fritsche — remember him? — he isn’t going anywhere soon, either. That means not to Hartford. But it also means not back in the lineup. Renney was asked if he envisioned using the wing anytime soon. The coach said he didn’t.
On a related note, Lynn Zinser of the Times told me on Monday she saw someone walking around the Garden wearing a Rangers No. 49 Fritsche jersey. What are the odds it was a blood relative?
<li>Then there was tonight’s comical non sequitur.
Renney was asked whether he hated any opponents more than others. The coach responded that he didn’t, that he treats every team with an equal level of respect and disdain.
Then Renney said, “Hate can manifest itself in many different ways…There are my donuts.”
Turns out right when Renney was speaking, goaltending coach Benoit Allaire was walking down the hallway with a haul from Dunkin’ Donuts.
Credit the News’ Michael Obernauer with the line of the night: “Can I quote you on that?”