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The search for Marian Gaborik's linemates continues

New York Rangers right wing Marian Gaborik (10)

New York Rangers right wing Marian Gaborik (10) looks at the crowd as he waits for a face off during the third period against the Boston Bruins at Madison Square Garden. (Nov. 17, 2010) Credit: Christopher Pasatieri

 Today at Rangers practice, Gaborik was with Derek Stepan and Ruslan Fedotenko; John Tortorella pointed out to us after practice that Fedotenko, according to the team's video breakdowns, leads the Rangers in primary scoring chances.

So Tortorella broke up the Brandon Prust-Brian Boyle-Fedotenko trio for today. "I'm robbing Peter to pay Paul," he said. "We need some consistency there."

He said he may try different lines tomorrow in practice, since the Rangers don't play until Thursday in Ottawa.

The search is really borne of trying to find a fit with Gaborik, who was on the ice with Erik Christensen and Sean Avery for the Senators' winning goal late in the game on Sunday. Gaborik has eight goals in 16 games, but six of those were in two games against two of the worst teams in the league. He's also not found a linemate he can rely upon, the way he did with Vinny Prospal for much of last season and Christensen for a stretch at the end.

"It would be nice," Gaborik said of finding at least one teammate to work with. "But obviously, things aren't clicking. I'm pretty much used to it now."

For Tortorella, finding a running mate for his best player is "a two-way street." He needs Gaborik to be able to lift the play of his linemates and be responsible defensively as well as finding someone, or two someones, to get Gaborik going.

New York Sports