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Rangers concerned after McDonagh leaves with injury

by Kevin Woodley

VANCOUVER -- The sight of New York Rangers defenseman Ryan McDonagh struggling to get up off the ice after receiving a high hit from Alexandre Burrows in the final minute of a 3-1 win against the Vancouver Canucks on Tuesday night was enough to seriously worry his teammates.

McDonagh, who leads the Rangers with 24:49 of ice time per game and is tied for fifth on the team in scoring with 43 points, usually bounces right up from everything. But New York's top defenseman appeared to be favoring his left shoulder as he slowly made his way off the ice and straight to the dressing room.

"It's not a good thing to see him laying on the ice," forward Brad Richards said. "He's probably been our best player for the last few months, night in and night out. He's resilient and battles through a lot. I don't know anything, but hopefully it's short-term and nothing serious."

Rangers coach Alain Vigneault did not have an update after the game.

"Don't know. Didn't check and we'll know [Wednesday]," he said.

Vigneault also said he did not see the hit by Burrows. McDonagh had already taken one hit from Zack Kassian behind the Rangers net when Burrows sandwiched him from the other side. Burrows received a five-minute major penalty for elbowing and a game misconduct.

"My intentions weren't to be dirty or hurt the guy," Burrows said. "I just wanted to get a forecheck and retrieve the puck."

McDonagh had six goals and 13 points in his past 15 games coming into the game against Vancouver, and had emerged in some talks as a possible Norris Trophy candidate as the NHL's best defenseman. He plays in all situations and also anchors the top even-strength pairing alongside Dan Girardi.

"You get worried," goalie Henrik Lundqvist said. "We have important weeks ahead of us, hopefully months, so you want to make sure everybody is healthy and hopefully it's not too bad."

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