Rangers F Blake Wheeler to miss rest of regular season

By Thomson Reuters Feb 16, 2024 | 11:36 PM

New York Rangers right winger Blake Wheeler will miss the rest of the regular season after he suffered an injury to his right leg Thursday night during the Rangers’ 7-4 win over the Montreal Canadiens.

Wheeler was placed on injured reserve Friday.

Wheeler was trying to pry the puck from along the end boards behind the Montreal net when he was checked by Montreal defenseman Jayden Struble and fell to the ice in the first period. The 37-year-old went down awkwardly and was unable to put weight on that leg, needing help to get off the ice.

The Rangers haven’t ruled out Wheeler making a return for the playoffs, but they were lamenting the loss as they prepare for their Stadium Series outdoor game at MetLife Stadium against the New York Islanders on Sunday.

“As much as these guys are teammates, we lost a friend. He’s obviously going through something that no one wants to go through, so there’s more to it than just the impact on the team,” Rangers defenseman Jacob Trouba said. “We all care a lot about the hockey and our jobs, but we’re also humans and friends and have families outside the rink.”

Wheeler is in his first season with the Rangers and has 21 points in 54 games. He has played 16 seasons in the NHL for three teams, spending 13 seasons with the Winnipeg Jets. He began his career with the Boston Bruins in the 2008-09 season.

Wheeler, a one-time All-Star, has 321 goals and 622 assists in 1,172 games in his career.

–Field Level Media