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Posted On Tuesday, 09.27.2011 / 1:07 PM

By Dan Rosen -  NHL.com Senior Writer /NHL.com - Rangers World Tour

Rangers make it through Day 1

PRAGUE -- The Rangers started Tuesday's practice at Tesla Arena with some skating drills. They did laps around the ice to get their legs moving, the blood flowing.

The pucks came out a little later and they did some basic passing and shooting drills, including 2-on-0s. The practice closed with a game of mini 3-on-3 with the nets situated on each blue line and the players jumping on and off the ice rapidly.

It wasn't exactly light-hearted because Tortorella did some yelling and made sure to get his message across in a pair of impassioned speeches, one during practice and one after practice, but the workout was crisp and there was a purpose to it.

"We're trying to get into the time zone," Tortorella said in front of a larger than anticipated media throng. "We had a long, good travel night. It worked out very smoothly, but we're trying to keep them up, get them accustomed to this time zone and just get a sweat.

"Sometimes when you switch venues, especially coming this far, we forget what we're doing. It's not to look at a beautiful area out here; we're here to get ready for a hockey season. We have a lot of work to do."

After months of talking about the trip, the Rangers are just happy that they're finally here and it's under way.

"It's really nice to get a practice under your belt, get off the plane, just relax and get organized and settled in the city," captain Ryan Callahan said. "We've been talking about the trip now for a long time, so to be here now and get settled, it's a good feeling."

Follow Dan Rosen on Twitter at: @drosennhl

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Posted On Tuesday, 09.27.2011 / 9:52 AM

By Dan Rosen -  NHL.com Senior Writer /NHL.com - Rangers World Tour

Rangers have arrived, time to sweat

PRAGUE -- The flight was about as uneventful as it gets. The players sat in the first-class seats of the giant 767 we flew to Prague while the Rangers coaches, executive staff, doctors, trainers, equipment managers and NHL personnel such as myself lounged in coach, each with our own row.

Dinner was served shortly after we took off from Philadelphia and then it was lights out until the captain said we were close to Prague and the breakfast service began.

We landed here at 1 p.m. local time, which for us was 7 a.m. The crew on the tarmac seemed genuinely thrilled to see the Rangers. One of them even had a jersey that he was getting signed. They were all using their camera phones.

The bus ride from the airport to the hotel was long and eventful as the drivers of our giant buses tried to navigate through the narrow, hilly roads that were further constricted by construction.

Once we got to the hotel there was a sizable contingent of autograph seekers waiting for the Rangers. They all had their binders with hockey cards and they were eager. The Rangers obliged on their way into the hotel.

After taking about 45 minutes to shower and refresh, the players met to head over to Tesla Arena.

Rangers coach John Tortorella wants to put his team through a practice so they can get a sweat and get the jet lag out of their systems.

That's where we are heading now.
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Posted On Monday, 09.26.2011 / 8:27 PM

By Dan Rosen -  NHL.com Senior Writer /NHL.com - Rangers World Tour

Rangers lose Sauer to shoulder sprain

PHILADELPHIA -- New York Rangers defenseman Michael Sauer left Monday's preseason game against the Flyers early in the first period with what was diagnosed as a right shoulder sprain.

Sauer was run into the boards by Flyers forward Zac Rinaldo. He hit the end boards awkwardly and was immediately taken to the dressing room.

With the Rangers set to travel to Europe after Monday's game, Sauer reported to the security screening at Wells Fargo Center wearing a sling. Rangers coach John Tortorella said X-rays on his right shoulder were negative, but he is thought to be out at least a week.

The Rangers are already without No. 1 defenseman Marc Staal, who has been suffering from headaches that are likely a result of a concussion he suffered last season. Staal will not travel with the Rangers to Europe, but the team remains hopeful that he will join them overseas before the start of the regular season on Oct. 7.

Sauer is one of 10 blueliners the Rangers are planning to take to Europe. The list also includes Ryan McDonagh, Dan Girardi, Steve Eminger, Tim Erixon, Michael Del Zotto, Dylan McIlrath, Brendan Bell, Stu Bickel and Blake Parlett.

Rangers forward Sean Avery also had X-rays on the big toe on his right foot, which came back negative. He blocked a shot in the second period and spent the rest of the game icing his toe, which was bloody.

Follow Dan Rosen on Twitter at: @drosennhl
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Posted On Monday, 09.26.2011 / 6:55 PM

By Dan Rosen -  NHL.com Senior Writer /NHL.com - Rangers World Tour

Bags are packed, time to fly

PHILADELPHIA -- Welcome to a blog that will focus strictly on the world tour the New York Rangers will embark on beginning Monday night from Philadelphia. I'll be on this 13-night, four-country trip the team and will be taking you through their days, providing some color on what the boys are up to, who makes the final roster, and of course, how they the beginning of their season in Stockholm against Los Angeles and Anaheim.

This is my fourth straight season going over to Europe to cover the Compuware NHL Premiere. It's my second time traveling with the Rangers as we were together in 2008 when they opened the season in Prague against the Tampa Bay Lightning.

The trip begins Monday night from Philadelphia, where the Rangers are playing a preseason game and earlier in the day the 2012 Bridgestone NHL Winter Classic was officially announced. Shortly after the game at Wells Fargo Center concludes, we'll be bussing to the airport, where a plane awaits to take us to Prague.

We will land in Prague Tuesday afternoon local time. The schedule from there remains up in the air, but the first of New York's four preseason games in Europe is Thursday night at Tesla Arena against HC Sparta.

The Rangers also play in Gothenburg, Sweden on Friday, Bratislava, Slovakia on Sunday and Zug, Switzerland next Monday before traveling to Stockholm. They open the regular season Oct. 7 against Los Angeles and then face Anaheim on Oct. 8.

As long as you follow here you'll know exactly where the team is, what they're up to, who they're playing, who's playing well, who is not, what foreign cuisine I'm trying, and anything else you're interested in, however small it may be.

That said, there is already some major news. Marc Staal is not here in Philadelphia and will not be making the trip overseas with his team.

Staal, the Rangers No. 1 blueliner, has been having headaches believed to be from a concussion he suffered in February. The Rangers remain hopeful that Staal will join them in Europe sometime before they open the regular season against Los Angeles on Oct. 7.

The Rangers also trimmed two forwards off their current roster before the plane leaves the tarmac, Andreas Thuresson and Andre Deveaux. Coach John Tortorella was adamant prior to Monday's game that he knew who the team was going to take to Europe and provided there are no monumental surprises or debilitating injuries, the list is set.

Tortorella plans to have three goalies, 10 defensemen and 19 forwards in Europe for the final four preseason games. Some of them will obviously be coming home before the regular season begins.

To find out who, and anything else about the Rangers world tour, make sure you follow along with me. We'll go on this journey together.

Follow Dan Rosen on Twitter at: @drosennhl
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Quote of the Day

Right now I'm just happy to be back and get through this season and make sure I do my job. I've never had an issue with having to prove myself again and I'll try to do it again. We'll see where it takes me.

— Defenseman Torey Krug on signing with the Boston Bruins
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