Connect with us

Sports

Kaapo Kakko ‘certainly close’ to returning to Rangers lineup

Published

on

[ad_1]

Winger Kaapo Kakko skated with the Rangers on Thursday for the first time since going on the COVID-19 protocol list Feb. 20.

“He’s still day-to-day, so he’s certainly close,” head coach David Quinn said before the Rangers faced the Devils at Prudential Center on Thursday night. “Good to have him back out there. He hasn’t really had a chance — that was his first time on the ice.

“We’re certainly going to put him in the game at the right time for a variety of reasons.”

It was Kakko’s second stint on the COVID-protocol list. The first kept him out of just one game (Feb. 1), due to a false positive. But the 20-year-old Finn has missed the past six games.

After Kakko came off the coronavirus protocol list, Quinn said he would have to go through return-to-play protocol before returning to the lineup.

Kaapo Kakko
Kaapo Kakko
NHLI via Getty Images

Kakko was beginning to find a home on the Rangers’ second line next to Ryan Strome and Alexis Lafreniere before landing on the list. Through 14 games, he had two goals and an assist.


Defensemen Jacob Trouba (broken thumb) and Anthony Bitetto (lower-body injury) also participated in the morning skate and could return soon.

“It does [put a pep in everybody’s step],” Quinn said of having players return. “Obviously when you get guys closer to the lineup you create more depth. You’re going to have a better chance to win hockey games.

“So I’m sure some guys were excited, some guys nervous. These guys are good players and they’re going to step in the lineup when they’re ready to go. But overall it’s a good feeling guys get excited.”


Igor Shesterkin made his second-straight start Thursday, which would be his fifth in the last eight games.


Braden Schneider, the Rangers’ 19th-overall pick in the 2020 draft, signed a three-year, entry-level contract Wednesday that is set to begin in 2021-22.

The deal carries a cap hit of $925,000 and an average annual value of $1,325,000. The 19-year-old defenseman is expected to participate in next season’s NHL training camp. If he doesn’t make the opening night roster, he’ll be sent to AHL Hartford.


Defenseman Mason Geertson signed a two-way deal Wednesday and was placed on waivers in order for the Rangers to have more options for their taxi squad.

After agreeing to terms on an AHL contract with the Wolf Pack on Sept. 29, 2019, Geertson had played 64 games in Hartford. In four games this year, the 25-year-old had an assist and 11 penalty minutes.

With 109 penalty minutes in 2019-20, Geertson led all AHL defensemen in the category. The Avalanche’s fourth-round pick in 2013 had skated in 281 career AHL games over parts of seven seasons.

[ad_2]

Source link

Continue Reading

Sports

Bulls’ Zach LaVine called cops on ‘obsessed’ fan at his home

Published

on

By

[ad_1]

Zach LaVine had an unwanted visitor.

The Chicago Bulls star had to call the police after an “allegedly obsessed” woman showed up to his Chicago home and refused to leave on Thursday night, according to TMZ. 

The woman reportedly traveled from out of state, demanding to speak with the first-time All-Star, who was home at the time.

Police took her a local hospital for mental evaluation, and she has not been formally arrested or charged with a crime.

LaVine, 25, wrapped up first-half action with the Bulls on Wednesday and was drafted to Kevin Durant’s All-Star side for Sunday’s festivities in Atlanta.

[ad_2]

Source link

Continue Reading

Sports

Blake Griffin a free agent after Pistons buyout

Published

on

By

[ad_1]

Blake Griffin will be free to sign with the Nets or another interested NBA team after agreeing to a contract buyout with the Detroit Pistons.

The six-time All-Star forward “has interest from most of the NBA’s top playoff contenders and is expected to make a decision on his next team after conversations with prospective teams,” ESPN reported.

The Nets, Lakers, Heat, Warriors and Clippers – his former team — are among those that have expressed interest, according to the New York Times. ESPN.com added that the Blazers are interested

The 31-year-old Griffin hasn’t played since Feb. 12 while the Pistons attempted to trade him before the March 25 deadline, but they found no takers due to the remainder of his $36.6 million salary for this season and the $39 million he’s owed for 2021-22.

Blake Griffin was released by the Pistons on March 5, 2021
Blake Griffin was released by the Pistons on March 5, 2021
Getty Images

Griffin is averaging a career-low 12.3 points and 5.2 rebounds in 20 games this season. He was dealt by the Clippers to Detroit in 2018, during the first season of a five-year extension worth $171 million.



[ad_2]

Source link

Continue Reading

Sports

Broncos send a pretty strong warning to Drew Lock

Published

on

By

[ad_1]

Drew Lock is no lock to remain the Denver Broncos’ starting quarterback in 2021.

General manager George Paton and coach Vic Fangio both said Thursday that the team expects to bring in competition for Lock, possibly with the ninth pick in the NFL Draft.

“Obviously we’re always looking to bring in players at all positions that can raise the level of competition, and the quarterback is no different in that regard,” Fangio said, according to the team’s website.

“Until we get or until Drew proves to be the next great quarterback, like the ones that the Denver franchise has been used to in years past or certain teams around the league … are used to, we’re going to always try and bring in competition. But I have confidence that Drew can continue to improve.”

Lock made 13 starts in 2020 and tied with Carson Wentz for the league lead with 15 interceptions. He finished 32nd in the league among qualifying quarterbacks with a 75.4 passer rating, ahead of only Dwayne Haskins, Wentz and Sam Darnold.

Drew Lock faces the Patriots on October 18, 2020.
Drew Lock faces the Patriots on October 18, 2020.
Getty Images

“Very talented, was inconsistent at times, has a lot to work on,” Paton said Thursday. “But I’ve spoken with Drew, I see him every day. He’s here early. He’s working. He really wants to be great. And we’re always going to try to bring in competition at every position, and quarterback as well. But I like the track that Drew’s on.”

Lock, the Broncos’ second-round pick in 2019 out of Missouri, had started five games as a rookie, winning four of them. Denver went 4-9 with him as the starter last season.

“I’m confident that Drew’s going to continue to improve,” Fangio said. “Drew’s had a great offseason up to this point. There’s not a lot you can do, but he’s working hard on his own, coming over here and getting workouts, and I know he’s doing a lot at home by himself, watching video by himself. He’s got a good setup over there. And he’s doing anything and everything he can to improve, even in February and now in March.”

[ad_2]

Source link

Continue Reading

Trending