The Rangers are expected to have one of their top two goalies in net on Saturday when they take on the Devils across the Hudson in Newark.
All signs point to Igor Shesterkin at least dressing as backup, which would be the first time the Russian netminder suits up for a game in over two weeks.
Head coach Peter Laviolette, however, has danced around confirming Shesterkin’s status the past few days.
“He went through the practice today,” Laviolette said of Shesterkin, who has dealt with nagging lower-body injuries in the past. “Full practice, no restrictions. We’ll make those decisions … I know that he came out of practice fine. There weren’t any setbacks in practice. He looked good to me.”
Shesterkin has been participating in practice in some capacity for the duration of his recovery.
The Rangers have naturally taken a cautious approach when it has come to handling Shesterkin.
Especially amid such a strong start to the season, the Rangers have had zero reason to rush their No. 1 goalie.
They also took advantage of this past five-day break in game action to give Shesterkin even more time to heal.
If Shesterkin is still ailing — which has progressed from “banged up” to “minor soreness” to a clear indication that there is an issue afoot — Jonathan Quick looks primed to get the starting nod against the Devils.
Quick has played in three of the Rangers’ past four games.
The one he missed was due to a minor upper-body injury he sustained in the Red Wings game.
With both goalies unavailable Nov. 9 against the Wild, Louis Domingue got the start while Dylan Garand backed up.
Domingue was returned to AHL Hartford on Monday and has not been recalled since.
Over his past three starts, Quick has allowed 10 goals on the 95 shots he has faced.
He has ranked second in the NHL in goals-against average at 1.98 and sixth in save percentage at .928.
The Rangers will carry a 10-game point streak into Saturday’s game, which matches their season-long streak from last season.
The last time the Rangers had a point streak of 11 games was a 13-game tear from Oct. 18-Nov. 15, 2015.
It is the second time in team history the Blueshirts have won at least 11 of their first 14 games of a season, joining the 1990-91 team.
The Rangers recalled defenseman Connor Mackey from AHL Hartford.
The Rangers will play three of their next four games against Metropolitan Division teams, in addition to six of their next seven contests against Eastern Conference clubs.