Rangers Notebook: Marc Staal diagnosed with concussion

Marc Staal
Marc Staal, No. 18, suffered a concussion in his last game, but the Rangers are cautiously optimistic about its severity.
Credit: Getty Images

The news the Rangers both dreaded and expected became reality Tuesday morning.

Defenseman Marc Staal is out indefinitely after being diagnosed with a concussion after he took a shoulder to the chin from Devils rookie right wing Reid Boucher in the third period of Saturday’s 4-3 overtime loss.

“Marc has been diagnosed with a concussion,” head coach Alain Vigneault said after the Rangers early skate at the Garden. “He’s being watched by our doctors. They don’t feel it is as serious as he might have had in the past. He’s feeling better. We’ll take it day by day.”

The concussion is the second Staal has suffered in three years. The defenseman experienced post-concussion symptoms in the summer of 2011 after a hard check by his brother, Hurricanes center Eric Staal, in a game Feb. 22, 2011. The hit caused Staal to miss the first 36 games of the 2011-12 season.

Staal did not play the final 27 games of the lockout-shortened 2013 campaign after being struck near the eye by shot off the stick of Flyers defenseman Kimmo Timonen in the Rangers 4-2 win on March 5. Staal did return for Game 3 of the Eastern Conference quarterfinal series against the Capitals, but not play in the Rangers final nine playoff games last spring.

Vigneault said the organization spoke with Dr. Jeffrey Scott Kutcher, the Michigan-based neurologist who saw Rick Nash when the Rangers’ left wing was experiencing post-concussion symptoms earlier this season. But according to Vigneault, Kutcher “doesn’t feel the need to see [Staal] at this point.”

All about competition

As he did following Sunday’s 4-1 loss to Washington, Vigneault criticized the Rangers “compete level.”

The Rangers entered last night’s match against Nashville with a 15-15-1 record, and have lost two in a row.

“I’m disappointed in our compete level,” Vigneault said. “Our consistent compete level is not there the way you need it to be in such a competitive league.”

The Rangers called up Arron Asham from AHL Hartford Monday, but Vigneault stressed physicality and fighting are not the only aspects of improved team toughness he needs to see from his team.

“I look at the Detroit Red Wings, who I know well because I coached against them the last seven years. They have had no toughness per se as far as that type of [fighting] personnel in their lineup, in no point other than maybe [Jordan] Tootoo the last couple years, but he’s gone now.

“But those guys play hard. They have the puck and they say, ‘Try and get it from me.’ Or they don’t have it and they battle like hell to get it back. They compete. That’s the team toughness I’m hoping we would get here. Maybe we’ll get there by changing some personnel [in the lineup] and adding a little bit more toughness. We’re at .500. I’m trying.”

Follow Rangers beat writer Denis Gorman on Twitter @DenisGorman.



News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
Local

MTA announces service changes for Sunday

The MTA has announced service changes ahead of Sunday's People's Climate March, which will be held from 11:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Sunday. Riders using…

Local

NYPD launches Twitter account for L train

The NYPD recently launched a Twitter handle dedicated to the L train and its riders. According to @NYPDLtrain, officers went underground Thursday morning to hand…

Local

Bushwick community space offers activists a place to…

A new Bushwick community space offers community activists to meet, create, learn and throw back a few cold ones. MayDay, located 214 Starr Street in Bushwick,…

Local

Activists gearing up for Sunday's "historic" People's Climate…

If all goes according to plan, more than 100,000 people will gather near Central Park West on Sunday morning and march through midtown to raise…

Movies

Kevin Smith makes peace with the Internet

I was thinking about Ain't It Cool News and Harry Knowles last night, wondering if anyone from Ain't It Cool had reviewed my new movie…

Movies

Art imitates life in 'Swim Little Fish Swim'

There's a certain comfort to be taken in finding that young artists are still moving to New York and trying to make it — and…

Movies

Review: Terry Gilliam's 'The Zero Theorem' is better…

Terry Gilliam's latest, "The Zero Theorem," concerns a reclusive malcontent (Christoph Waltz) struggling with the search for the meaning of life.

Music

Esperanza Spalding and a being called Emily get…

Esperanza Spalding is about to spiral off in a brand new direction that may or may include an alter ego named Emily.

NFL

Oday Aboushi ready for increased role, and to…

Oday Aboushi might feel comfortable enough to engage in some trash talk the next time he is on the field.

NFL

Giants vs. Texans: 3 things to watch

The Giants host the surprising Texans (2-0) in what may already be a must-win game for Big Blue.

NFL

Eric Decker misses practice again, could miss Monday

Jets wide receiver Eric Decker missed practice Thursday as he continues to rehab a hamstring injury suffered last Sunday.

MLB

Derek Jeter still focused on baseball as final…

Derek Jeter has effectively hid his emotions for 20 years in the Bronx.

Parenting

A sneaky way to serve kids fruits and…

"My First Juices and Smoothies" gives smoothie recipes for kids.

Style

3 things we love from Day 1 of…

The highlights from Day 1 of Milan Fashion Week.

Sex

Why don't more couples use condoms?

  Call it the “condom moment.” That’s the name the authors of a new study have given to the pivotal conversation every couple should be…

Sex

Need an idea for a first date? Here's…

Picture your idea of a nice first date. Is it dinner and a movie? A visit to an interesting museum exhibit? Instead, an expert on…