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Monday, October 7, 2013
Callahan set to make season debut

By Katie Strang

The Rangers will take the ice at Staples Center for Monday's pre-game skate around 2:30 p.m. ET, but head coach Alain Vigneault already confirmed fans' hopes on Friday when he told reporters that captain Ryan Callahan would return for the team's second game of the season.

The 28-year-old Callahan, who missed the season opener, will be back in the lineup for the Rangers' tilt against the Los Angeles Kings. It will be his first game since undergoing off-season surgery to repair a torn labrum in his left shoulder.

For a Rangers squad that dropped the season opener 4-1 to the Coyotes on Thursday, that's very good news. More than just his offensive contributions -- he had 16 goals and 31 points in 45 games last season -- Callahan's relentless, rugged game sets the tone for the entire team.

Considering the Rangers tough start to the season -- nine games on the road following a rough 1-5 showing in the preseason -- they need him back on the ice.

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After a somewhat-surprising demotion to the minors this weekend, J.T. Miller had an impressive debut with the Hartford Wolf Pack. The 20-year-old forward had two goals and an assist in the team's 4-3 win over the Albany Devils on Sunday.

It is believed that the Rangers sent him down to the AHL to allow the top prospect more quality minutes, rather than keep him around to play a limited role with the big club.