Tim Erixon stays with Rangers, for now

Tim Erixon #53 of the New York Rangers

Tim Erixon #53 of the New York Rangers against the Toronto Maple Leafs. (Oct. 27, 2011) (Credit: Jim McIsaac)

GREENBURGH, N.Y. -- Rookie Tim Erixon views every minute he spends with the Rangers this season as a blessing, even if his tenure hasn't exactly been steady.

Besides worrying about his performance, learning the system, and his minor lower body injury, Erixon has got something even more basic on his mind.

"I think my parents are probably going to drive here from Hartford," the 20-year-old defenseman said. "I might have to ask them to bring me some clothes."

Erixon was recalled from AHL Connecticut on Monday -- his third call-up this season and second in the last week -- as the Rangers attempt to plug holes to their banged-up defense.

The result has been a roller coaster of emotions for the young Swede, son of former Rangers wing Jan Erixon and a prospect whom coach John Tortorella considers one of the system's best. He has no car and shares an apartment in Hartford with teammate Mats Zuccarello.

"He's taking care of that now," Erixon joked. "Hopefully."

Erixon was called up Dec. 14 and flew to St. Louis, but was sent down the next day. He was recalled again Monday and played nearly 10 minutes Tuesday against the Devils in place of Jeff Woywitka, who missed the game with a sore left foot.

Woywitka remains questionable for Thursday night's game against the Islanders and said Wednesday after practice that his left foot injury is still bothering him. An X-ray revealed no breaks.

"It's better," Woywitka said, "but the tight, quick turns and sudden movements are still on the soreness side."

With Woywitka's status uncertain, Erixon will remain with the Rangers for at least one more game -- hence the need for clothes -- but maybe not much longer. The Rangers could choose to keep him and send down Stu Bickel, but Tortorella is still debating that.

"I'm not sure if this is the best thing for [Erixon] or playing in the minors," Tortorella said. "I just don't want to hurt him in his progression."

Erixon admitted the back-and-forth has been a little "annoying" but he's not complaining.

"This is a top team so it was going to be tough to play the whole season here," Erixon said. "I'm just trying to go out there and play good every game and chance I get."

Notes & quotes: D Marc Staal skated in practice again Wednesday but said his status has not changed since Monday. "It's still the status quo," Staal said. His timetable for return remains indefinite.

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