The Rangers practiced for about a half-hour at Verizon Center on Thursday afternoon, and while tight-lipped Coach John Tortorella didn’t offer much information, there are a couple of notes worth reporting.
*Rangers top defenseman Marc Staal did not skate Thursday after he played a game-high 33:48 last night in Game 1.
A Rangers staffer said Staal was riding a stationary bike during the practice, and it’s almost certain the Rangers were just giving Staal a bit of a rest.
*Tortorella said he wouldn’t comment on any potential lineup changes before tomorrow’s game.
*Center Erik Christensen skated on the Rangers’ top line during practice with Vinny Prospal and Marian Gaborik in what could be a line shake-up to create more scoring chances.
Tortorella said the line combinations Thursday would not necessarily remain intact for Game 2 on Friday, but it’s clear Tortorella was unhappy with the Rangers’ lack of scoring opportunities in Game 1.
“Certainly I’m not putting Erik in there for defensive purposes,” Tortorella said. “He is a skilled guy and has given us some good minutes at certain times during the year. After Game 1 there need to be some improvements with our game and certainly creating more offense is one of them.”