Sean Avery is out for the season after sustaining a lacerated spleen during last night's game. He is expected to make a full recovery but will be out of action for the remainder of the season, even if that somehow miraculously extends beyond next week. Earlier reports that he had suffered cardiac arrest at 3:00 AM were retracted after the Rangers said that he was in discomfort during the game, finished playing, and then went to St. Vincent's Hospital in Greenwich Village with a team doctor shortly thereafter. For full reports, see the Daily News, Newsday, Rangers Report, and NYR.com.
Avery was one of three players injured in the disheartening 5-3 loss that put the Rangers in a 3-0 hole in their second round series against the Pittsburgh Penguins. Chris Drury suffered what is believed to be a muscle injury in his side. He too finished the game after missing much of the second period, but was in obvious discomfort during the third period, unable to take draws or even get his stick down on the ice on occasion. Nevertheless, it is possible that Drury will attempt to gut it out and play when the series resumes tomorrow at the Garden.
Blair Betts may have sustained a broken cheek bone when he was hit in the face with a deflected puck, also in the second period. He left the game and did not return and is unlikely to play tomorrow night. For more on Avery, see the Record, MSG.com, Toronto Sun, Globe & Mail, ESPN, and AP. A couple of other new stories to read that were written before the news about Avery: Newsday and NY Sports Day.