WASHINGTON - Defenseman Kevin Klein, who left the ice cradling his left arm late with 41 seconds left in the third period after blocking an Alex Ovechkin shot, was undergoing postgame X-rays.
The team said it would know more about the status of Klein, who has been having a career year, with nine goals and 17 assists in 65 games, on Thursday. He began the season in the top four, subbing for both Ryan McDonagh and Dan Boyle when they were out for extended time with injuries.
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If Klein is sidelined for the next game, in Buffalo on Saturday, the Rangers would turn to Matt Hunwick, who has been a healthy scratch for the last seven games.
Trotz hails Talbot save
The brilliant glove save that Cam Talbot made on Nicklas Backstrom at the right post on the five-on-three at the beginning of the second period, with the Capitals trailing 2-1, "lifted their [the Rangers] bench," coach Barry Trotz said. "I don't look at [the loss] discouragingly at all. Here's a team that's tied for first overall in the National Hockey League."
Actually, it's the Eastern Conference, with Montreal.
Defenseman Matt Niskanen said the Rangers, who beat the Capitals, 4-2, in New York on Dec. 23, are "one of the fastest teams we've played this year, for sure. [Chris] Kreider, [Carl] Hagelin, [Marty] St. Louis, even [Rick] Nash, can motor. They have a lot of guys who can really scoot."
With two assists, rookie Kevin Hayes posted his third multi-point game of the season . . . The Rangers are 7-2-1 in the second half of back to backs. They are 22-1-3 when leading after the first period . . . Talbot "made some unreal saves," coach Alain Vigneault said. "He made four brilliant saves that were Grade-A."
Talbot is 7-1-1 with a 1.54 GAA and .948 save percentage and two shutouts in his last nine appearances.
On their off-day todayThursday, the team will tour the U.S. Secret Service training center in Maryland. "The whole kit-and-caboodle,"Vigneault said.