Major Blow, Rangers Forward Out for Season


Feb 12, 2024; New York, New York, USA; New York Rangers right wing Blake Wheeler (17) skates with the puck against the Calgary Flames during the first period at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

NEW YORK — The news is as bad as anticipated for New York Rangers forward Blake Wheeler.

His season is over, according to the New York Post.

Wheeler was injured and helped off the ice by his teammates after suffering a right leg injury in the Rangers’ 7-4 victory over the Canadiens at the Garden on Thursday.

Mandatory Credit: Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports

“You never want to see really anyone, but especially a teammate and a friend, go down like that,” Rangers forward Mika Zibanejad said after the game. “We were trying to make the best of the situation with 11 forwards, but it’s our teammate that gets hurt and it’s not just the impact that he has on the ice, but off the ice as well. You don’t want to see that happen.”

The 16-year NHL veteran may attempt to return for the playoffs but that will depend on progress of his rehab and if the Blueshirts’ can make a postseason run.

Mandatory Credit: Wendell Cruz-USA TODAY Sports

“That was tough for Blake, lower body right now,” New York coach Peter Laviolette said. “… That’s tough. He’s a veteran player that came here for a reason. To see something like that happen, it’s tough.”

Wheeler joined the Rangers on a one-year, $800,000 free agent deal after turning down more lucrative offers following his buyout by Winnipeg for a chance at a championship.

But now it appears the dream is dead after 54 games. Wheeler’s season will come to an with nine goals and 12 assists fin 53 games.

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