With sudden and surprise injuries to Chris Kreider and Pavel Buchnevich, the Rangers have recalled Cristobal “Boo” Nieves from the Hartford Wolf Pack to meet them in Vancouver. The official press release from the Rangers can be found below.
Buchnevich’s injury is being described as a recurrence of his back spasms. Some additional rest and time off should allow him to recover completely. However, AV refused to confirm Kreider’s issue as being a recurrence of his neck spasms. Now, this is purely speculation on my part, but I seem to remember Sidney Crosby missing a lot of time with what was diagnosed as a concussion, but then later changed to be described as a neck injury. Perhaps Kreider’s issue is similar to Crosby’s. Then again, it could be completely unrelated. All I know is that it is not a good sign that he came back, played, was fine, and then the day after the game he had an issue. That is what concerns me, that he was not hurt while playing, unlike Buchnevich, who felt his back become an issue during warm ups.
Here is a link to an article by Stephania Bell of ESPN regarding the issues that Crosby faced with his neck injury in 2011-2012. It’s a fascinating read about why a small injury to the neck’s soft tissue could result in a debilitating condition that has symptoms similar to a concussion. I just hope Kreider gets well soon and this doesn’t become a lingering issue to derail his season. Again, this is all speculation, but it is a concerning injury, occurring at a concerning time.
As for the callup of Nieves, I am a bit surprised that he was the first choice given Hrivik’s strong start to the AHL season and actual (albeit limited) NHL experience. Still, I’m excited to see what Nieves can do, especially after his strong showing in the Traverse City tournament. He will likely take a fourth line role and allow Michael Grabner to stay on the first line with Stepan and Nash. Clendening is likely headed back to the press box.
Here is the official release from the team:
Rangers Recall Cistoval Nieves from Hartford
New York Rangers General Manager Jeff Gorton announced today that the team has recalled Cristoval Nieves from the Hartford Wolf Pack of the American Hockey League (AHL).