Mika Zibanejad was kept out of Rangers training on Saturday morning due to what the team said was a “COVID-19 protocol related absence”.
This is the second time Zibanejad has entered the COVID-19 protocol since he spent much of last season’s training camp fighting the virus. Working his way back to feeling 100 percent healthy, Zibanejad ended up having one of his slowest season starts since joining the NHL in 2011. Rangers coach Gerard Gallant said it is unclear how Zibanejad’s situation will develop and how much time he will miss.
“It was hard, it wasn’t easy and everyone reacts differently to it,” Zibanejad later admitted during a Zoom call last season. “I didn’t feel so good. I told you I was fine, but it was just for me. I didn’t want to create anything around that or put that in my own head.”
Greg McKegg, who has been recalled five times so far this season, took Zibanejad’s spot on the top line between Chris Kreider and Barclay Goodrow in practice.