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Paint Power / Blog

Filip Chytil Rangers

Rangers will let Filip Chytil go, but not for long

The Rangers haven’t yet officially responded to Team Czech Republic’s request to make Filip Chytil available for the upcoming World Junior Tournament in Buffalo, but sources have indicated management will allow the 18-year-old center to leave the AHL Wolf Pack for the event.

The 21st-overall selection in last June’s Entry Draft, who played in the first two games of the season for the Rangers after unexpectedly earning a lineup spot with a head-turning training camp, has recorded 11 points (5-6) in nine games since his Oct. 10 assignment to the AHL.

It is believed the plan would be for Chytil to return to Hartford immediately following the tournament that will be contested between Dec. 26 and Jan. 5 — rather than join HC Zlin in the Czech League — so that the Rangers would retain the option to recall the teen if warranted.

Henrik Lundqvist is expected to get his 11th straight start in Friday’s match at the Garden against the Red Wings. The King, who is in the midst of his best extended run since his brilliance carried the Rangers to a 14-2-2 getaway in 2015-16, has a .932 save percentage and 2.17 goals against average over his last nine starts.

This will tie the 10th-longest consecutive starts streak of Lundqvist’s career. The 35-year-old Swede, who has not started more than 11 straight since he got the call for the final 14 games of the lockout-truncated 2012-13, set his personal high in starting the final 26 games of 2010-11. The netminder started 36 of the final 37 games in 2006-07.

Lundqvist’s start will mark his 20th in 23 games. Ondrej Pavelec has not started since a 5-4 defeat in Montreal on Oct. 28, though he did get 13:15 of relief work in Chicago on Nov. 15. Including tonight’s game against Detroit, the Rangers have five games before their next back-to-back on Dec. 8-9, when a visit to Washington is followed by a Garden match against the Devils.

Before Wednesday’s 6-1 victory at Carolina, achieved despite the absence of Ryan McDonagh (abdominal strain), the Brady Skjei-Kevin Shattenkirk pair had been on for 88 draws in the offensive zone and 41 in the defensive zone for a 68.2 percent O-zone start percentage.

But without the captain — who has a 53.5 D-zone start percentage — the Skjei-Shattenkirk had five defensive-zone starts as opposed to four in the O-zone (Stats courtesy of naturalstattrick.com).

David Desharnais is expected to remain a healthy scratch for the third straight game in light of the strong work of the recently constructed Jimmy Vesey-Boo Nieves-Paul Carey fourth line.

Source: https://nypost.com/