Lias Andersson, the 21-year-old center who requested a trade last month and abruptly left AHL Hartford, where the Rangers had sent him in mid-November, skated Tuesday in Sweden at a practice with second division club Kungalvs IK.
In an interview with the Swedish newspaper GP, Andersson was asked about his future and said — according to a translation by Google Translate — “I know a lot, but I can’t say anything.’’
The Rangers had no comment other than a team spokesman saying, “There is nothing new to report on our end, and [there are] no issues.’’
The Rangers had no comment when asked if team president John Davidson, who had said in a Jan. 10 sitdown with reporters that he wished to speak directly with Andersson, had spoken to the young Swede. But Larry Brooks of the the New York Post tweeted Tuesday that Davidson and Andersson had been in contact with each other the past 10 days and there was a “thaw’’ in the relationship between the two parties.
Andersson, in an interview this month with a Swedish reporter, had hinted that there were mental health issues connected to his decision to leave Hartford, though he was not specific. A few days later, at a Rangers practice, Davidson said he wished to speak directly to Andersson about his concerns. At that point, Davidson said, the Rangers had only spoken to Andersson’s agent, and not the player himself
Andersson, the No. 7 pick overall in the 2017 draft, made the Rangers out of training camp, but found himself buried in a fourth-line role with little ice time. He managed only a single assist in 17 games before the Rangers sent him to Hartford Nov. 17. In Hartford, he had four goals and one assist (five points) in 13 games
With Alexandar Georgiev starting in goal, and Henrik Lundqvist serving as backup, Igor Shesterkin was scratched, along with Artemi Panarin (upper-body injury) and Phillip DiGiuseppe.