If there is one team that might be benefitting from the NHL lockout it is the New York Rangers. While Rangers fans are excited about newly acquired center Rick Nash and a full season of Chris Kreider, it is Marian Gaborik who needs the time away from the ice.
You may remember Gaborik played out the playoff last season with a torn labrum in his shoulder after taking a bad hit in Game 3 versus the Ottawa Senators and received surgery as soon as the season ended. He was hoping for a five-month recovery but a more realistic timetable would be six months.
If the lockout goes into November, then the Rangers might get full participation from Gaborik in what would likely be an abridged season. It would be tough, even with the addition of Nash, for the Rangers to be without their leading goal-scorer (41) from a year ago.
For hockey fans, nothing is worse than not having hockey to enjoy. For Rangers fans, 2012-13 was supposed to be about hope. After getting as close as they did to a Stanley Cup Final and a summer of adding Rick Nash, the prospect of no hockey is like being told there will be no Christmas.
Like all hockey fans, I hope pucks start dropping as soon as possible. However, the deeper this lockout goes the better the Rangers might be when they finally do hit the ice. Right now, the NHL has cancelled all games up to October 24th. Gaborik has a November return timetable. In a shortened season having arguably your best offensive player healthy could be huge.