The Rangers will be without the services of rookie forward Chris Kreider for an indefinite period of time after he underwent surgery on his injured left hand Friday back in New York.
Kreider suffered an unidentiifed injury to his hand a week ago during the Rangers' 3-1 win in Columbus, then played two more games before being shut down. He did not play in Wednesday's Garden victory over the Flyers, at which time head coach Alain Vigneault said Kreider also would not be making the trip out west with the rest of the team this week and next--a four-game swing through Calgary, Edmonton, Vancouver and Colorado.
"He got operated on today and he is out indefinitely, it's all I can tell you," Vigneault said Friday following the team's morning skate at the Saddledome in Calgary "We waited for the doctors to tell us the best course of action, and they came to the conclusion yesterday and he got operated on today."
The 22-year-old Kreider is tied for third on the team with 17 goals, and his 37 points rank seventh. He is also tied for second on the team with six power play goals.
Among NHL rookies Kreider is tied for fourth in scoring, is fifth in goals, and tied for second in power play goals.
"He's a really good player--big, strong, fast, complemented Derek Stepan and Rick Nash really well, but we can't sing the blues," offered alternate captain Brad Richards Friday morning. "There are teams in this league with tons of injuries, plenty of things going on. It's tough for Chris, but we have to move on. Games come every second night and we need the points. I hope he comes back as soon as he can."