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Rangers aren't rookies in Gothenburg

Friday, 09.30.2011 / 12:40 PM

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

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Rangers World Tour
Rangers aren't rookies in Gothenburg
GOTHENBURG, Sweden -- Don't let the headline fool you, because nobody on the current Rangers roster even was out of diapers in 1981. Heck, only four of the 33 players on the roster now even were born around this time 30 years ago.

So the players likely wouldn't know that this isn't the New York Rangers' first visit to the Scandinavium here to play the Frolunda Indians.

On Sept. 22, 1981, in the Rangers' first training camp under coach Herb Brooks, the Rangers beat Frolunda 7-1. It was part of a nine-game NHL/Europe tournament that included the Rangers, Washington Capitals, HIFK Helsinki, AIK Stockholm, Djurgarden Stockholm and Oulu Karpat.

Dave Maloney, who currently works for MSG as a Rangers radio and TV analyst, played in the Rangers' game against Frolunda. He's back in New York doing analysis on MSG on for Friday's game.

Speaking of Friday's game, outside of hometown hero Henrik Lundqvist, the Rangers will dress a thin lineup that won't include Marian Gaborik, Brad Richards, Ryan Callahan, Brandon Dubinsky, Dan Girardi and many others. However, Sean Avery and Brian Boyle will play. Avery had been nursing a sore foot and Boyle had the flu in our first few days in Prague.

Swedes Carl Hagelin and Tim Erixon will play in front of their countrymen.

Frolunda's roster has some familiar names on it, including Lundqvist's twin brother, Joel, who used to play in Dallas. Joel Lundqvist is Frolunda's captain. Christian Backman, who played for the Rangers near the end of the 2007-08 season, is on defense for the Indians. Former Flyer Mika Pyorala will be the left win on the second line. Former Boston Bruin P.J. Axelsson is on the roster, but he's not in the lineup Friday.

Frolunda has five wins and an overtime loss in the first six games of its Swedish Elite League schedule.

Follow Dan Rosen on Twitter at: @drosennhl

Quote of the Day

It's pretty crazy, but believe me when I say we didn't draft these players with the mindset we had to because they had good hockey-playing dads. It just turned out that way. But we're certainly glad they're a part of our organization.

— Arizona Coyotes director of amateur scouting Tim Bernhardt regarding the coincidence that six of the organization's top prospects are sons of former NHL players