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Chris Drury could return to Rangers lineup by Friday

Chris Drury

FILE - In this March 25, 2010, file photo, New York Rangers’ Chris Drury celebrates his goal in an NHL hockey game against the New Jersey Devils in Newark, N.J. Drury is out for four weeks because of a broken left index finger. The 34-year-old center was injured while blocking a shot Monday, Sept. 20, during a scrimmage. Drury will likely be sidelined for the entire preseason and at least the regular-season opener at Buffalo on Oct. 9. (AP Photo/Bill Kostroun)


The Rangers have gotten off to a good start just a game into their season, but they could be getting their captain Chris Drury back by the end of the week. Larry Brooks of the New York Post got word from Rangers coach John Tortorella that Drury could very well rejoin the team by Friday. While that’s the good news, the bad news is that the Rangers will have some moves to take care of if that’s the case.

The Blueshirts will have to make both lineup and roster decisions to accommodate Drury’s return. Center Todd White ($2.375M) and forward Tim Kennedy ($550,000), scratches in each of the Rangers’ first two games, both cleared waivers last week and can be assigned to Hartford at any time before Nov. 5.

“We’ll cross that [bridge] when we get there,” Tortorella said when asked what move might be in the offing.

The salary dance is a fun one for the Rangers to deal with, but it’s made a lot easier by having Wade Redden and his gigantic contract sitting in the AHL. With the hot start of rookie Derek Stepan, where they’ll try to find a comfortable spot to put Drury into the lineup will be curious. With Drury and Vinny Prospal out of the lineup, the Rangers have been playing less-than-optimal options at center like Erik Christensen and Artem Anisimov. Drury’s return should provide a boost to the Rangers lineup, or at least a very competent face-off man.