Per Mollie Walker, Filip Chytil will travel with the Rangers for Games 3 and 4. It’s unknown if he will return, but he was practicing between Will Cuylle and Kaapo Kakko today. Alex Wennberg was having a maintenance day, so that’s the most likely reason. He’s not being held back, but there’s also no reason to rush him.

Chytil will return for the playoffs at some point, but it does seem the Rangers may wait until the team needs a jolt or until the expected showdown with Carolina in the second round. The Caps are a heavier team than their other potential opponents, and the Canes have far more skill, necessitating his return and lengthening the lineup down the middle.

Beating a dead horse, it’s far more likely Chytil will return as the 3C and not the 1RW. The Mika Zibanejad line has been stellar thus far, and there’s no need to change that. Meanwhile, the Rangers do need a bit more consistent offense from the third line without impacting the defensive shutdown ability of the bottom six. Chytil addresses that.

It’s expected we will see Cuylle-Chytil-Kakko, with Wennberg dropping to 4C with some combination of Matt Rempe, Jimmy Vesey, and Barclay Goodrow.


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