The Rangers have now fired three strikes at their goaltenders during practices this season, the first a Brian Boyle drive that hit Henrik Lundqvist in the neck on Nov. 3; the second a Derek Stepan two-on-one, one-timer that broke Martin Biron's collarbone on Feb. 28, thus knocking the backup out of the remainder of the season; and the third a Marc Staal blast that hit Lundqvist in the mask during yesterday's morning skate.

Nevertheless, coach John Tortorella last night repeated what he had previously said last week, that he had no intention of telling his players to keep their shots down against the club's only indispensible athlete with just two weeks to go in the season and no healthy backup of pedigree in the organization. Indeed, when asked before last night's 2-1 shootout loss at the Garden to the Senators if he would suggest to his players that they be careful, Tortorella said such a question was "disrespectful."