When I first saw a preliminary European schedule in the spring, there was talk about the Rangers playing in Budapest. Gotta tell ya, I've been around Europe---Ireland, England, France, Czech Republic, Austria---and that really intrigued me, and was looking forward to a visit. That game didn't work out (perhaps next fall), as coach John Tortorella told reporters in Switzerland yesterday, and the substitute was Zug, rather than an open date.
"We played four games in five nights and you tell me how many countries we've been in … I don't know," Tortorella said after the 8-4 loss. "When we were doing the schedule, we added this one and I wish we had this as a practice day. I think we need to practice. We haven't practiced."
So, after a day off in Stockholm today, the Rangers will finally practice: Wednesday and Thursday at the Globe Arena, where they face the Kings on Friday and the Ducks on Saturday.
Tortorella said he believes two recent scratches, Wojtek Wolski (groin) and Michael Sauer (shoulder), will be able to join in on Wednesday.
Today, we'll be busy though. Let''s see whether Dale Weise makes it through waivers, and I'll prepare my annual preview and five keys to the season, which will run on Thursday. Will also be finalizing my forecasts for the East and West, which will appear here at some point...