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апреля 2011 года.
Fedotenko has replaced Callahan in fine fashion // Newsday
For a guy with a pretty decent NHL pedigree, as the two Stanley Cup tattoos on his right shoulder can attest, Ruslan Fedotenko hasn't always had the easiest time finding work.
The one-year, $1-million deal he signed before this season made him a Ranger, the fifth team he's played for in a 10-year career.
"Yeah, I'd like to be able to stay in one place for a long time," he said, "but it doesn't work out like that always. But I'm here and I hope I can get another Cup."
That's a bit further down the road for these Rangers, who entered last night's Game 4 still needing to improve their play to a high enough level where it's not the 31-year-old Fedotenko who is leading the way among the forwards.
When John Tortorella's young group looked a bit tight in Games 1 and 2, Fedotenko stood out - not just for generating a good forecheck and a few scoring chances, but also for helping to contain Alex Ovechkin, who always seemed to look left or right and see the Rangers' No.19 there.
Tortorella called Fedotenko "my Cally," a reference to Ryan Callahan, the heart-and-soul winger whose absence with a broken ankle seemed profound in Games 1 and 2.
But Fedotenko has filled in well, perhaps better than Callahan could have, given Fedotenko has the size and strength to match the exuberant physicality that Ovechkin brings to every shift.
Fedotenko is not so gifted offensively, having scored more than 19 goals just once in 10 NHL seasons, but he knows when it's time to raise his game, with two Game 7 goals to decide the Cup for the Lightning in 2004 and seven more in the Cup-winning run for the Penguins in 2009.
"I feel pretty comfortable in any situation," Fedotenko said.
He'd been among the leaders in ice time among Rangers forwards, having received the penalty-killing time that would have gone to Callahan while forming decent chemistry with Callahan's usual sidekick, Brandon Dubinsky.
"I've been in different situations my whole career, so it's not that hard to adjust," he said. "This is the time of year you have to be willing to do anything to help the team win."
For a Ukrainian-born, undrafted forward whose path to the NHL took him from Finland to Sioux City to Trenton before catching on with the Flyers, adjusting has been even easier. He slotted right in with Brian Boyle and Brandon Prust from the start of this season to form the Rangers' toughest-checking line that also produced career years for Boyle, with 21 goals, and Prust, with 13.
Tortorella was rewarded for adding a player he had before in Tampa with Vinny Prospal last season, so adding Fedotenko was easy.
"He's been good in this series, very underrated as far as his hitting, doing the little things on the boards," Tortorella said. "We'd like to see him score some more."
His main focus through three games had been to keep Ovechkin on the defensive. Fedotenko helped get the turnover that led to Dubinsky's winner in Game 3.
"He's definitely not so strong in the defensive zone, so we try to take advantage of that," Fedotenko said. "You just have to play him hard and keep going."
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