Avery practices, but won't play Thursday

Associated Press  |  Last updated November 02, 2011
Sean Avery's NHL return is on hold for at least one more game. Avery rejoined the New York Rangers for practice Wednesday morning but was ruled out of Thursday night's home game against the Anaheim Ducks because coach John Tortorella wants to play the same lineup that beat the San Jose Sharks 5-2 on Monday night. ''I didn't skate because of re-entry waivers for a couple of days, and you know what, really the guys played pretty good last game, had a big win, so I wouldn't change the lineup,'' the unusually mellow Avery said. Tortorella agreed. The Rangers (4-3-3) earned their first win at renovated Madison Square Garden on Monday after going 0-1-1 in their first two home games. ''That was the biggest strength of the game. Everyone contributed and we did the things we needed to do to start being more consistent playing the right way,'' Tortorella said. ''This is the same situation as any other player being brought up, and we want to conduct it that way. I think that's what fair to Sean. ''We're going to run it just like we always do as far as guys coming to our team.'' Avery returned to the Rangers on Tuesday after he cleared re-entry waivers and was recalled from the Connecticut Whale of the AHL following a two-game stint there after he recovered from a shoulder injury. He practiced with his Rangers teammates Wednesday for the first time since he was sent to the minors just before the regular season began. Avery said he felt good and repeated how happy he was to be back. Now he just has to be patient until he gets his chance to play again in a game. Once he does, he will have great support behind him from the home fans who have chanted his name and hung banners calling for his return. ''I loved every game that I've ever played for this team,'' Avery said. ''I am definitely excited about playing in the new building. I just want to help these guys win. I just want to play my game and play as hard as I can and help them win. ''Listen, we're all here because we want to play for the Rangers.'' Avery wasn't sure he would ever get that chance again. He could have been claimed by the other 29 NHL teams after he was placed on waivers Monday by the Rangers, but they all passed on him before the 24-hour period expired. That cleared the way for Avery to be recalled by New York on Tuesday. ''I've had a lot of things happen to me over my career,'' the 31-year-old forward said. ''I never rule anything out. Decisions that are out of your control are always out of your control. All you have to do is work hard and stay positive. I have learned that as time goes on. I just try to work hard. Usually if that's the case, good things are going to happen. ''Whether you're a professional athlete or you're not, it's all the same. I'm not looking back or gauging my surprise level. I am just here. I had a pretty good practice. I am excited to be back, I'm excited for the guys to play well tomorrow.'' When Avery was sent to the minors, Tortorella gave the reason that the Rangers had better players than him for the available roster spots. The absence of rugged forward Mike Rupp, who is out because of a left knee injury, prompted the move to summon Avery to provide the missing grit. ''He is going to put people on their heels,'' said forward Brad Richards, also a teammate of Avery's with the Dallas Stars. ''That has always been his assets. He does other things also, but that's where he is most effective. ''He is going to come in and help, but I don't think we're lost here this week and trying to find our games. We're all starting to feel better, and hopefully he can just come in and add to that and bring us energy.'' There is still no timetable for Rupp to return, but Tortorella said doctors are getting closer to determining what course of action will be taken. What that means for Avery is unclear. If Rupp returns soon, Avery's NHL stint could be short. He was reacquired by New York in March 2009 on re-entry waivers following the forward's highly publicized fallout with the Stars. ''I know fans and the media have their favorite players and they have players they want to grind on,'' Tortorella said. ''It doesn't matter either way to me whether they're grinding on him or they love him, it's not going to change my decision-making. It can't happen that way. We cannot run a business that way.'' Avery scored a goal Friday in his season debut with Connecticut at Adirondack after he sat out the first seven games because of a shoulder injury. He has seven penalty minutes and 11 shots on goal in his two games with the Whale. In 249 games with the Rangers over five seasons, Avery has 42 goals, 78 assists and 580 penalty minutes. New York is 129-89-31 with Avery in the lineup since he was first acquired on Feb. 5, 2007, from Los Angeles. ''Sean is bringing something that no other players have in the league,'' goalie Henrik Lundqvist said. ''There is a lot of edge to his game. He can play in different ways, but in some games when you have that edge and in-your-face mentality, there is not a lot of guys that can do that.''
GET THE YARDBARKER APP:
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

The Panthers had to use a silent snap count at the Super Bowl

Report: Lakers would fire Byron Scott to hire Luke Walton

Was Alain Vigneault right about NHL's lack of punishment towards Wayne Simmonds?

Seahawks’ Frank Clark rips Cam Newton ‘that boy a b—‘

Report: Tom Thibodeau has 'always wanted' Knicks job

Report: Luke Walton will not consider coaching offers until offseason

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Budweiser: Peyton Manning not paid for Super Bowl beer plug

Archie Manning: 'I think Peyton's done in Denver'

Donald Trump: I told Tom Brady not to endorse me for President

Marshawn Lynch: Complicated and talented NFL anti-hero

Hue Jackson lets Manziel and ex know they aren’t alone

Report: Knicks fire coach Derek Fisher

Duke's Allen appears to intentionally trip Louisville's Spaulding

Candidates for New York Knicks head coaching job

Attorney alleges Johnny Manziel ruptured ex-girlfriend's eardrum

Jeanie Buss may clean house in Lakers’ front office

Lisa Ann wants to reward Emmanuel Sanders for Super Bowl win

WWE Superstar Daniel Bryan to announce retirement

Nine best and worst players from 2015 NFL playoffs

Rodman wants Phil Jackson to know he’s ready to coach Knicks

Wade Phillips trolls Cam Newton with dabbing tweet

Top defensive performances in Super Bowl history

FBI questions Jeremy Shockey about drug and gambling ring

Coldplay drummer thought Johnny Football was real name

Ranking every game from 2015 NFL Playoffs

NHL News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
the YARDBARKER app
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

Was Alain Vigneault right about NHL's lack of punishment towards Wayne Simmonds?

Report: Knicks fire coach Derek Fisher

The best and worst commercials from Super Bowl 50

Best and worst from Super Bowl 50

Six best plays from Super Bowl 50

Eli doesn't look thrilled as Peyton wins Super Bowl

Did Beyonce almost fall down during Super Bowl halftime show?

Curry to serve as drummer for Panthers

Report: Marshawn Lynch plans to retire

The 14 biggest plays in Super Bowl history

Today's Best Stuff
For Publishers
Company Info
Help
Follow Yardbarker