The New York Rangers announced on Monday that they expect Derek Stepan to miss four-to-six weeks with two broken ribs suffered in Friday’s game against the Boston Bruins.
In a hit that many questioned as being late, Matt Beleskey tossed Stepan into the boards on a breakout. The league didn’t issue any supplemental discipline on Beleskey, because it was determined to not be late enough to be suspendable. Beleskey’s hit was determined to by .7 seconds late and the league won’t act unless a hit is at least .8 seconds late, according to Damien Cox.
That explanation won’t carry much weight with fans or teammates the next time the Rangers face the Bruins. Though Beleskey had to answer the bell immediately after the hit as well, with 6-foot-5 defenseman Dylan McIlrath jumping in to fight Beleskey. McIlrath got an extra penalty on that, ultimately giving the Bruins a power play.
Watch the hit below.
Stepan has registered six goals and six assists for the Rangers so far this season. The 25-year-old is coming of a season where he put up 16 goals and 39 assists in just 68 games.
Rangers coach Alain Vigneault told reporters that he didn’t expect to recall anyone immediately following the announcement of Stepan’s timeframe for return. However, the team has already recalled Jayson Megna from AHL Hartford.
#NYR Injury Update: Derek Stepan will miss 4-6 weeks due to broken ribs
— New York Rangers (@NYRangers) November 30, 2015
Despite Vigneault saying he didn't expect the team to recall anyone immediately, the Rangers have recalled Jayson Megna from Hartford.
— Dan Rosen (@drosennhl) November 30, 2015
Dustin Nelson is the News Editor for The Hockey Writers. He’s a contributor to Hockey Prospectus, Hockey Wilderness, and writes a column for Rotowire. He’s also written for Gone Puck Wild, Wild Xtra, InDigest, Electric Literature, The Rumpus, Tiny Mix Tapes, Prefix Magazine & other publications. Have a tip? Email him at dlukenelson[at]gmail[dot]com.