New York Rangers center Mika Zibanejad fully practiced for the first time in over a month. He is expected to be back in the lineup Wednesday night.
The Rangers leader has been out of the lineup since he suffered an upper-body injury in a loss against the Boston Bruins on Oct. 27.
Rangers beat reporter Vince Z. Mercogliano Twitted the good news at the conclusion of the team practice.
Mika is good to go. DQ confirms he’ll play with Kreider and Buch. He also said centers will be Mika, Strome, Chytil and Howden. Order is TBD. #NYR
— Vince Z. Mercogliano (@vzmercogliano) November 26, 2019
The lines at practice looked like this:
Filip Chytil had the day off but will be back in the lineup Wednesday night when the Rangers host the Carolina Hurricanes.
The return of Zibanejad will now force the coaching staff to adjust the line combinations. David Quinn had mentioned he would like to keep Strome with Panarin as the two of been scoring goals and producing points in Mika’s absence.
That would mean the coaching staff will have to decide whether to start Brett Howden in the middle of Brendan Lemieux and Kaapo Kakko or put Chytil there and drop Howden to the fourth line most likely between Boo Nieves and Brendan Smith.
The Rangers host the Carolina Hurricanes on Wednesday night at MSG. Henrik Lundqvist will make his second consecutive start.