Newspaper article The Canadian Press

Rangers, Habs Adjust Lineups Ahead of Crucial Game 6 at Madison Square Garden

Newspaper article The Canadian Press

Rangers, Habs Adjust Lineups Ahead of Crucial Game 6 at Madison Square Garden

Article excerpt

Rangers, Habs adjust lineups ahead of Game 6

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NEW YORK, N.Y. - Brandon Prust returns but fellow forward Dale Weise is out and defenceman Alexei Emelin is a game-time decision for the Montreal Canadiens.

The Rangers are without suspended defenceman John Moore, with ex-Hab Raphael Diaz expected to play in his place in the third defensive pairing.

Both teams had lineup issues ahead of Game 6 of the Eastern Conference final.

A win and the Rangers can advance to the Stanley Cup final for the first time in 20 years. A loss and New York has to go back to the Bell Centre for a deciding game.

Montreal coach Michel Therrien confirmed after Thursday's morning skate that Weise, flattened by the hit that earned Moore a two-game suspension, would not play. Emelin, who missed Game 5 with an undisclosed injury, did not take part in the morning skate either but was seen on an exercise bike outside the locker-room.

Prust returns from his two-game suspension for breaking Derek Stepan's jaw with a blindside hit in Game 3.

"He's going to be hungry to play," said Therrien. "He's going to play hard. He's excited about playing tonight so we're glad he's back in the lineup."

Weise seemed woozy after the Moore hit Tuesday in Game 5 but returned to action after spending time in the dressing room.

On Thursday, Therrien denied that Weise had a head injury.

Therrien said Weise, who plays in the Habs' third line, told doctors he "felt fine" about finishing the last game. The Montreal coach said player safety is Job 1, but noted that Stepan finished Game 3 with what turned out to be a broken jaw.

"Those are the things that you see at this time of the year," he said. "Right now (Weise) has a body injury so he won't be able to lay tonight."

Asked what specific tests an injured player like Weise has to pass to get back into the game, Therrien essentially said that was up to the team doctors.

"Those are the things I that don't know, because as a coach I never get a concussion," said a smiling Therrien. …

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