Prospal May Require Surgery

As per Larry Brooks, the Vinny Prospal injury situation may be more severe than initially predicted. Prospal, who has been feeling a level of soreness in his right knee all summer, did not play in a single preseason game. He was recently advised to spend two weeks off his the ice. Unfortunately, it looks like there will be little cause for optimism following Prospal’s two week hiatus. It is unlikely that Prospal will return to skating, as initially planned, following those two weeks:

Meanwhile, a well-placed source has told The Post that there’s little reason for optimism that the condition of Vinny Prospal’s right knee will improve following his enforced two-week rest period. Indeed, we’re told it would be no surprise at all should the 35-year-old require surgery that would likely end his season, if not his career.

Of course, that quote doesn’t necessarily say that Prospal is going to need surgery, but it does say that it is unlikely Prospal will see any improvement following his two week break. Should there be little or no improvement, there are few options left for Prospal, who at 35 years old doesn’t heal as quickly. He can either wait it out longer, which may or may not work, or he can have surgery, which will end his season. Either way, if Prospal’s knee doesn’t heal up after these two weeks, and signs point to this situation occurring, then the Rangers will be without their alternate captain for an indefinite amount of time.

11 Responses to “Prospal May Require Surgery”

  1. Section 121 says:

    If Prospal’s season is indeed over, and EC flounders on the top line, I wonder how long it will take for Torts to put Dubinsky where he belongs; centering the first line… maybe never?

    • Dave says:

      Torts is so attached to Dubinsky on the wing, I doubt it would happen. But I have to admit, that Dubi-AA-Cally line looks good.

  2. jurgenno88 says:

    Prospal out long term is bad news. But provides opportunity elsewhere. we’ll have a post on it tomorrow.

    • Dave says:

      Prospal out long term, combined with a floundering EC, means Todd White gets a longer look.

  3. zach says:

    Pretty much assures EC on the 1st line…

  4. zach says:

    Expanding my thoughts a little bit…

    Overall, I felt the best choice for top line center was Prospal, a veteran who plays with consistency and drive. Given the natural talent of Fro and Gabby, all we need in a center is somebody with a consistent push, defensive responsibility, and vision to let the playmakers do their thing. Prospal showed last year that he could feed Gabby.

    My worries on Christensen are anchored in his lack of consistency. It may be that given top-line billing, he discovers the drive to be great — but that’s not a guarantee. Ultimately, the question is: will he be a physical force to give Gabby some space to operate, or will he be in his own head too much?

    Stepan naturally has the ideal top-line qualities — and that’s why we all love him– but I ultimately do not want to stunt his development by putting too much on his plate. If he skips a year in the AHL, that’s fine — but still, bring him along slowly. I think third line minutes are appropriate for him, with savvy veterans who know how to play at the pro level. The Avery-Fedotenko pairing seems to mesh well.

    As for Anisimov, it’s a similar idea to Stepan, in that I want to continue bringing him along slowly. Ultimately, what is the difference between top line minutes and second line minutes? I’d argue it comes down to role more than minutes. On the preseason line centering Dubi and Cally — both young, yet ultimately unproven, players who must show progress to get to the next level — Anisimov is responsible for harnessing his own scoring skills, making plays for himself, and in the process developing confidence in his abilities. Centering Gabby and Fro would require AA to create opportunities for the established stars, but not for himself. It’s a subtlety, but I do think it matters. Put him on a line with other young, hungry players (Dubi and Cally), and let them know that, given all three are in a contract year, the time to take your game to the next level is now.

    Ultimately, I agree with Torts’ decision to move Dubi to the wing, and let him try to be the power forward that he has the potential to be. Again, the same logic as Anisimov — let him develop his own offensive game instead of forcing him to create for others.

    So I’m not confident that we have a strong internal option for that top line center spot. I’m as down on White as anybody here, and don’t think he moves well enough to keep up with the playmaking Gabby and Frolov.

    Thoughts?

    • Dave says:

      Funny, I have a post on this coming in the afternoon.

      • zach says:

        My other concern is that EC’s inconsistent effort is a horrible example to the kids. If we’re really serious about a youth movement, then shouldn’t the remaining veterans provide a positive example in terms of effort, hustle, toughness, etc? I don’t trust EC to throw his body around to protect Gabby when the need arises.

    • Brian says:

      White’s days are numbered – his game is speed and puck distribution and he doesn’t bring much else. He definately appears to have lost a step and if he can’t bring a veteran playmaking presence ala Vinny Prospal last year to our first line, then he is expendable.

      I like the idea of AA playing with Dubi and Cally and Stepan brought along slowly in a 3rd line role as you said. The real question of course is can EC handle the top line minutes that will be handed to him and produce consistently – we undoubtedly will find out over the next several months.

  5. Brian says:

    Does a player with a 35+ contract come off the books in the event of being on injured reserve? Prospal, although he was great for us last year, losing him isn’t the end of the world. Looks like Prospal’s spot will go to Fedotenko.

    I think it’s about time to give AA a shot at the big line. EC hasn’t earned it and Stepan should be developed properly w/o the expectation of immediate results that the first line involves. It seems that Dubi is a LW to stay – which isn’t terrible because he is good at it.

    • jurgenno88 says:

      I’m more than ok with Anisimov in the 2nd line center position but I’d also rather he get an extended look at 1st line than EC.