Kane out for tonight

So much for keeping the same lineup. Patrick Kane is getting the night off. He will sit out due to maintenance.

Kane hasn’t been as effective as Vladimir Tarasenko. Since the Rangers acquired him from the Blackhawks, he’s been inconsistent. There are shifts where you barely notice him. Then, there are shifts where you see the star player who’s been one of the game’s best.

In 16 games as a Blueshirt, Kane has five goals and five assists for 10 points. After going without a point or much impact in losses to the Devils and Sabres, he picked up a primary assist on Mika Zibanejad’s power play goal in a 5-2 win over the Caps on Sunday.

With Kane sitting out, Gerard Gallant, as promised, will dress 11 forwards and 7 defensemen. Ben Harpur will get worked in when necessary. He’s the extra D. Maybe they’ll even have him play up front on the fourth line.

The more likely scenario is that Gallant will double shift his best players and move Jimmy Vesey up. Vesey has played with Zibanejad and Chris Kreider before. That’s something I think we’ll see.

Figure Barclay Goodrow will also get some shifts up top. He’s a versatile player who you can plug anywhere. Motte can also be moved up into the top nine.

The game is on TNT. It doesn’t begin until 7:30 EST.

About Derek Felix

Derek Felix is sports blogger whose previous experience included separate stints at ESPN as a stat researcher for NHL and WNBA telecasts. The Staten Island native also interned for or hockey historian Stan Fischler and worked behind the scenes for MSG as a production assistant on New Jersey Devil telecasts. An avid New York sports fan who enjoys covering events, writing, concerts, movies and the outdoors, Derek has covered consecutive Staten Island Yankees NY Penn League championships in '05 and '06. He also scored Berkeley Carroll high school basketball games from '06-14 and provided an outlet for the Park Slope school's student athletes. Hitting Back gives them the publicity they deserve. In his free time, he also attends Ranger games and is a loyal St. John's alum with a sports management degree. The Battle Of Hudson administrator and chief editor can be followed below on Twitter and Facebook.
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