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Drury in, White, Gilroy out, Prospal (flu) sent home


                   PITTSBURGH---After missing eight weeks and 31 games, Rangers captain Chris Drury returns as a fourth liner and PKer, in what he considers a second opening night.

                   Drury, who said he had no restrictions on his play, will be wearing extra padding on his gloves in an attempt to prevent another broken finger. He will skate with LW Sean Avery and possibly switch between center and right wing with the other linemate, Erik Christensen. Coach John Torotrella said he had no specific minute limitations in mind for Drury, but that he possibly would be used a little on the penalty kill and as a right-handed faceoff man in the defensive zone.

                "I really like the three (forward) pairs we've been using (on the PK), but I might use a fourth," Tortorella said, who added that Drury is the type of straight-ahead, hard-working player that would fit in with the developing identity of the team. 

                   In his career, Drury has been very productive against the Penguins, with 13 goals and 34 points in 39 games.

                  The veteran made it clear yesterday that he was rejoining a far more cohesive team and wanted to just fit in. "The chemistry is there," he said, "the cameraderie is there."

                 Todd White will be scratched for the 17th time, and D Matt Gilroy won't dress. The sidelined Vinny Prospal (knee), who traveled here with the club and was expected to practice, came down with the flu and was sent back to New York.



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