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Marc Staal flies to D.C. with team... Richards? Russia?

The Rangers arrived in Washington today with defenseman Marc Staal, which presumably means he hasn't exhibited any concussion symptoms from the unnecessary shoulder-to-shoulder crash initiated by his brother, Eric, in last night's 4-3 OT win, while Marc was being hooked and unaware of the impending blast.  

Marc also apparently wasn't limping on the twisted knee that, in coach John Tortorella's words, "got progressively worse" during the game and caused him to exit in the third period.

It's unclear whether he'll practice tomorrow in advance of the game with the Capitals on Friday. I presume the Rangers will be extra careful with their All-Star defenseman. But the Rangers have yet to summon a sub from the AHL to join them in the nation's capital yet.

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On the waiver front, don't expect the Rangers to claim Zherdev, Svatos, et al, or overspend on Brad Richards at this point. As we discussed in the Twitterverse twitter.com/stevezipay yesterday, you simply don'r risk giving up healthy assets for a UFA with a concussion.

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Are the Rangers opening next season with two games in Russia? That's what the pub-hungry KHL wants. And the Caps, with Ovechkin and Semin and....

Questions: There's still no transfer agreement between the NHL and KHL. And what good does it do the Rangers, who have a Swedish star?  Wouldn't they rather open in Stockholm or London, as we mentioned a few weeks ago?  And a long European trip will throw a wrench in Tortorella's training-camp schedule anyway.  Maybe there's a deal to be made for an exhibition game in Moscow or St. Pete (are the arenas NHL-worthy?) then two regular-season games in Western Europe. Rangers in London at O2 would work also....Omsk? Don't think so.

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