Tracking the Rangers during this lockout has been hard enough considering that they are all over the place. But I assumed once they got somewhere, they would stay there till either the lockout or the season was over.
Apparently, I was wrong.
Yesterday, in my European Update, I briefly posted that Carl Hagelin was not returning to Sweden. The reason for that is his contract ends on December 8th and assuming there is a season, he doesn’t want to risk injuring his shoulder. Fair enough.
Should the season be officially canceled (something many are assuming will happen although I refuse to say that just yet), he may return to Södertälje after all as I’m sure the team would love to have him back.
Club director Maria Andark conducted an interview after it was announced Hagelin wouldn’t be returning and made these comments:
Has the New York Rangers had no mandate to influence the issue?
- I do not really know. But I know that Calle is very professional, and this is probably much that he wants to be safe than sorry with his shoulder.
If the NHL season would be canceled, there is a chance that Carl Hagelin returns to SSK?
- We do not plan for it. Of course there is a shred of hope, but it is best with the heart.
If I had to guess, I don’t think the Rangers told him not to play. I also wouldn’t be surprised if there is a verbal agreement between the two sides (as they are not replacing him) that if the entire season is canceled, he will return to Sweden. In the meantime, we get to know he is safely in New York.
Speaking of safely in New York, or at least the United States, Barys Astana announced that Ryan McDonagh was taking a leave of absence until after the December break (which runs from 12/10 through 12/18) from the team for “family reasons, and also because of the need to treat an injury”. If the lockout isn’t over by then and he does return, he will have missed eight games.
Shortly after the announcement, Rangers beat writers were able to confirm that McDonagh was not injured other than some minor bumps and bruises. As for the family reasons, no word yet but personally I hope that everything is okay. Maybe he was just homesick and wanted to come home for the holidays? That’s what I’m going with until told otherwise because then it is nothing serious. Honestly, as happy as I am to have him safe in the United States, I just hope everything is okay.
That leaves three guys in Europe – Rick Nash and Michael Del Zotto in Switzerland (they face-off against each other December 4th which means it may be safe to assume lockout ends on the third to prevent that battle) and Derek Stepan in Finland. Depending on how this week goes (big meeting scheduled for later today), will determine if that list grows or these guys are on their way home as well. Let’s hope for the latter. My computer has the link to Google Translate memorized and forgotten the one for the NHL website.