David Quinn had some surprising news in the wake of Sunday’s 5-3 loss to the Flyers at the Garden: Goalie Igor Shesterkin, out with a broken rib suffered in a car accident the previous Sunday, might be back sooner than anticipated.
“He feels a lot better,’’ Quinn said. “He’s been on the ice; he’s taking some shots — nothing high — so he might be back sooner than we envisioned.”
Shesterkin emerged as the Rangers’ No. 1 goalie when he went 9-1 after his Jan. 6 call-up from Hartford.
When the Rangers announced his injury last Monday, they initially said he would be re-evaluated in two weeks.
Quinn stays positive
Quinn had no timetable to offer for how long Chris Kreider, who suffered a broken left foot in Friday’s game against the Flyers, will be out. The loss of the team’s emotional leader is a blow to the Rangers, but Quinn said they can overcome it.
“I think one of the things that they all realize is, when Mika [Zibanejad] went out, I don’t think anybody thought we were going to have any success without Mika,’’ he said. “And we went 8-4-1 and we beat some good teams without Mika. And I think we all feel that we’re a much better hockey team today than we were in November, when we didn’t have Mika.’’
Quinn benched second-line center Ryan Strome after he took two penalties that led to power-play goals and failed to get back on defense on what turned out to be a shorthanded goal.
“Two penalties that he can’t take, and I just didn’t like his game,’’ Quinn said.
NHL honors Zibanejad
Zibanejad was named the NHL’s second star for February after scoring 11 goals (tied for first) and 20 points (second-most in the league). Edmonton’s Leon Draisaitl was named first star and Boston’s David Pastrnak was third star.