After a few practices with the team and two games on a tryout in Hartford over the weekend, the Rangers decided not to offer a contract to veteran free-agent defenseman Tomas Kaberle.
Although the Rangers are looking for depth on a blue line that has been impacted by injuries to Ryan McDonagh, Dan Boyle and Kevin Klein, and a five-game suspension for John Moore, Kaberle, 36, who played in the Czech Republic last season, was not the answer.
Matt Hunwick, 29, signed as a free agent in July, has filled in well with six assists since Oct. 27, and the former Bruin and Avalanche defenseman apparently will remain on the roster when McDonagh returns.
McDonagh, who missed his eighth game Monday night after suffering a separated shoulder Nov. 1 is expected to resume skating this week.
Kaberle, who played 12 seasons with Toronto, was released after a tryout with the Devils in September.
Duclair wants to stay
Rookie Anthony Duclair, 19, returned to the lineup Monday night after missing three games as a healthy scratch. Like many of the Rangers, Duclair struggled, playing 12:44, with no shots on goal.
Before the game, he reiterated that he hopes to stick with the Rangers all season instead of returning to his junior club, the Quebec Remparts.
"I'm not complaining," said Duclair, who scored 50 goals as a first-liner last season. "I'd rather be here than in juniors, learning from veteran guys like Marty [St. Louis] and [Rick] Nash . . . I think it's better for me to stay up here, even if I'm not playing every game, being around the pro environment. I don't think I have much to prove there anymore."
Duclair, who replaced Jesper Fast and was on the third line with Kevin Hayes and Carl Hagelin, said watching games and studying video on his reads and play without the puck was helpful: "I've got time to develop, but I've got to make sure when I'm in there, I've got to make an impact."