The New York Rangers may see themselves without one of their top-4 defensemen for a bit after Jacob Trouba suffered an upper-body injury against the Tampa Bay Lightning on Thursday.
Trouba skated 12:22 before going to the locker room near the end of the second period. Brendan Smith shifted back to defense and took his place. New York later announced that the 25-year-old blueliner would not finish the remainder of the contest.
It’s unclear how or when Trouba got hurt, or if it’s serious or not; given the score was 8-1 after the second period, it’s also possible that Trouba is being held out as a precaution. In any case, it doesn’t bode well for the Rangers, who are 8-6-2 to start the season and sit four points out of a wild card spot.
Without one of their blue-chip acquisitions during the offseason, the Rangers would not only miss one of their biggest assets on special teams but their top-pairing right-hand defenseman who brings size, offense and puck-moving ability to the lineup.
Through 16 games this season, the 6-3, 209-pound blueliner has a goal and seven assists while averaging 23:17 for the Blueshirts.
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