SUNRISE, Fla. - Although Ruslan Fedotenko was spared a broken finger, like Chris Drury, or a broken hand, like Ryan Callahan on Dec. 15 and Brandon Dubinsky last year while blocking shots, the Rangers' roster needs repair.
Erik Christensen (knee) and Derek Boogaard (concussion) are out and Vinny Prospal has had a "little bit of a setback" in his recovery from knee surgery, and won't skate every day, coach John Tortorella said, so the estimate that the 35-year-old, who had the surgery Oct. 18, would be back mid-January isn't on target. There is no new timetable.
Tortorella did not want to discuss the play of D Michael Del Zotto, who returned after being scratched for four games, without looking at video of the game. The second-year pro played 15:33, looked a step behind, was a minus-1 and was whistled for interference in the first period while missing a pinch along the boards . . . In his third NHL game, Dale Weise, whose holding penalty provided the power play that led to David Booth's goal that gave the Panthers a 1-0 lead, did not play after that . . . Brian Boyle and Mats Zuccarello combined for eight shots . . . Boyle also was struck in the ankle by Jason Garrison's shot, but returned . . . Marc Staal led defensemen in ice time with 28:10. Marian Gaborik played 24:58, often double-shifted, to lead the forwards . . . Tortorella thought the Derek Stepan, Brandon Dubinsky and Zuccarello line was the team's best. Dubinsky said Zuccarello, the diminutive Norwegian, "is like a sponge, he wants to learn and I keep telling him to just play his game. He's going to be a big part of this team."