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Leading the charge or going down with the ship? Rangers captain Chris Drury returns today

Apr 9, 2011, 12:04 PM EDT

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Chris Drury AP

Rangers captain Chris Drury has missed a lot of time this year with different injuries. He’s broken his hand twice and has been out of the lineup since February 3 with a knee injury. He”ll make his return today against New Jersey, however, in what could prove to be the Rangers final game of the season.

When Drury’s played this year he’s not been the guy we remember from the past with Buffalo and Colorado. In 23 games this season he has zero goals and four assists. His role today won’t be symbolic as he’ll be out there to win faceoffs and likely play on the fourth line with shootout specialists Mats Zuccarello and Erik Christensen.

As Rangers captain, Drury has had a bit of a rough go of it from the fans. With a huge contract comes huge expectations and after signing with the Rangers after huge seasons in Buffalo, fans were expecting Drury to bring those big numbers over with him. The offense never really came and the fans have soured on him to the point where many fans want to see Ryan Callahan usurp him as team captain sooner than not.

The ironic twist here is that Drury has been working his tail off even harder to get back in the lineup now that Callahan is out with a broken ankle. Drury can do his part to silence his naysayers today if he helps lead the Rangers to a win over New Jersey and help put the Rangers back in the playoffs. It’s an uphill climb for New York today, but Drury can help make himself a sort of legend if he can pull that off.

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