Photo: Neil Miller
Photo: Neil Miller

In game five of the New York Rangers-Pittsburgh Penguins series tragedy struck. The Rangers were in the offensive zone when Captain Ryan McDonagh fired a slap shot at the net. Unfortunately the puck stopped before it reached the back of the net. Even more unfortunate, the puck hit right-winger, Mats Zuccarello in the head. Although the players wear a helmet, it does not always protect them from a high speed-moving puck. Immediately, Zuccarello found his way to the bench but you could tell he was out of it.

He then went to the locker room escorted by the New York Rangers’ trainer for further attention. Unfortunately for fans, very little was disclosed on Zucc’s condition. The only information released was on Monday, April 27, 2015 was that Zuccarello had an upper-body injury leaving him out of action indefinitely. More than likely, I suspect that our beloved Zucc has a concussion. I am hoping the injury is mild as well as hoping we will see Zucc later in the second round of the NHL Playoffs. However, my brain is telling me, that Zuccarello is probably out for the remainder of the 2015 playoffs.

Zucc seems as though he is the heart and soul of this team.  I truly hope the guys in the room carry on with their strong play and heart for him if he cannot return to these playoffs. Although he did not score in the first round, Zucc still had a strong presence on the ice.  He looked for the players who had the open shot and attempted to set up plays. So, what needs to happen is this:  Zucc’s teammates have to step up for him. Game one of the second round is against the Washington Capitals and it starts tomorrow, Thursday, April 30, 2015! As always, let’s go Rangers!