John Tortorella metaphorically did to all Flyers what Chris Kreider did to Mika Zibanejad in Game 6 of last year’s first round in Pittsburgh when he ripped the iPad out of No. 93’s hands on the bench and emphatically threw it to the floor. the center checked it after hitting the post.
“He was looking off and I heard him start second-guessing his pitch and really didn’t like it,” Kreider said that night. “He beat him cleanly, hit the post. There is no need for second guessing.”
Philadelphia’s head coach did not physically interact with his players to remove their screens, instead issuing an order banning iPads from the bench, saying he felt their use was a distraction.
This is a first in the NHL.
“It really wouldn’t have made any difference to me,” Jimmy Vesey said before Sunday’s 2-1 loss to the Canadiens when talking about the ban. “I think I looked at the screen maybe three times in six years [in the NHL]”.
Kaapo Kakko and Alexis Lafreniere both said they’ve been pretty sparing with iPads on the bench.
“You know what you’ve done when you’re out,” Kakko said. “Sometimes I’ll look to see what else there might be if I think I’ve seen something; more about the power play, but not that much.
“I think it’s almost better not to.”
Lafreniere said he sometimes checks the screen if he feels like he missed something, but he focuses on the video the day after the game when the Rangers send him a packet of all his shifts.
But Zibanejad said he has found the iPad to be an extremely valuable tool, allowing him to monitor the power play in essentially real time.
“I don’t really look at it against the five, but it’s important to have it when making adjustments on the power play,” Zibanejad said. “You know what it looks like from your perspective, but you can see something else looking from the perspective above.
“When we go out, usually the second unit goes and then there’s usually at least one more line that goes on while we’re on the bench. The video is almost synchronized with the game, so you have a little time. You can go through it quickly.
“So we have time to make adjustments before the next power play. We’ve changed things a few times based on what we can see on screen,” Zibanejad said. “I don’t think you have to look at every shift and every opportunity in a game, but in power-play situations, I like it.”
Kreider missed his second straight game with an upper-body injury, while Julien Gauthier was placed on IR following a collision with Sammy Bless in the first period of Thursday’s game against Dallas.
Gauthier, who has been dealing with an upper-body issue, was placed on IR to make room on the roster for Ryan Carpenter, who was recalled from AHL Hartford before the game. The carpenter did not dress.
Jake Leshishin played 6:47 in his Rangers debut, playing on the fourth line between Blais and Johnny Brodzinski. The acquisition of the 23-year-old waiver wire from Vegas was 2nd and 2nd.
Libor Hajek, who last played on Dec. 12, was a healthy scratch for the 14th straight game and 28th time in 44 games. The 24-year-old defenseman was scratched in 60 of 77 games last season.
Jaroslav Halak, who has won his last three starts with a .918 save percentage and 2.34 GAA, is expected to get the call Monday in Columbus to complete the comeback after Igor Shesterkin went a clean sheet against Montreal on Sunday at the Garden.