Puck-moving defenseman Keith Yandle has two assists for the Rangers so far this postseason.
PITTSBURGH — Puck-moving defenseman Keith Yandle did not participate in the Rangers’ Monday morning skate at CONSOL Energy Center, but coach Alain Vigneault said Yandle simply was feeling under the weather and will remain in the lineup for Game 3.
“He just wasn’t feeling well this morning,” Vigneault said. “He’ll be in the lineup tonight. He’s just taking fluids, and he should be good to go.”
Yandle (two assists in the series) left the Rangers’ bench in the first period of Game 2 and missed almost the entire second half of the period after consecutive hits by Pens forward Blake Comeau. But he returned and finished the game and the Rangers say that incident is unrelated to his absence from Monday’s skate.
Glen Sather acquired Yandle at the trade deadline from the Arizona Coyotes in a blockbuster deal in which he traded top prospect Anthony Duclair and a first-round pick. Yandle is a mainstay on the Rangers’ power play, which has struggled to the tune of 2-for-12 so far in the first-round series against the Penguins.
Vigneault showed different power play units for Game 3 than what he used at the start of Game 2. He will be sticking with the two groups he used in the third period of Game 2:
Yandle, Ryan McDonagh, Rick Nash, Kevin Hayes and Mats Zuccarello will comprise one unit, and the second group includes Dan Boyle, Derick Brassard, Chris Kreider, Derek Stepan and Martin St. Louis.
Defenseman Matt Hunwick practiced on the top unit in Yandle’s absence on Monday morning.
If for some unexpected reason Yandle were to miss a game, defenseman Chris Summers — who also came over in the Yandle deadline trade — would likely take his place.
Top-four defenseman Kevin Klein (broken left arm, day-to-day) skated with his teammates on Monday morning for the first time since his March 11 injury, but the earliest he could be available is Game 4 on Wednesday night.
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