It’s official: the New York Rangers have placed Sean Avery on re-entry waivers. If no team claims him by 12 p.m. EST on Tuesday, Avery will rejoin the team and be eligible to play when the Blueshirts take on the Anaheim Ducks on Thursday.
The likelihood he is claimed appears slim, as many NHL/Rangers reporters have unanimously stated as so. The 31-year-old went unclaimed when New York originally placed him on waivers, in order for his demotion to the Connecticut Whale, the Rangers’ AHL affiliate, to take place. And in numerous interviews since he was left off the NHL roster, the fashion aficionado expressed his desire to only play in the Big Apple.
Speaking to reporters Monday, coach John Tortorella said that summoning Avery was done primarily because of Mike Rupp’s left knee injury. The team is “concerned” about the injury, and Avery fills the void as long as Rupp is sidelined, which could be long term.
The question is, if Avery clears waivers, who does he replace and will the leash on his play be loosened? The team has lacked a spark all season, which the agitator provides any time he’s on the ice, and allowed to do what he does best.
Erik Christensen and recently-recalled Andre Deveaux are the frontrunners to sit, and at this point I’d say let’s see what Devaux has … we’ve already seen a long enough time of next to nothing from Christensen.
Sixteen more hours and counting until the official word is in as to whether No. 16 will be black in Rangers’ red, white and blue.