Hebert Doesn’t Expect Rangers to Come Calling


Goaltender Guy Hebert didn’t seem all that surprised when he saw a couple of reporters waiting for him by his locker after the Ducks’ morning skate Wednesday.

He’s got cable. He knows New York Ranger goalie Mike Richter is sidelined for the rest of the season after suffering a knee injury Monday. He knows that the Rangers, who are only seven points out of playoff spot in the Eastern Conference, might be looking for help in net.

Hebert isn’t certain he’s the Rangers’ man, however. He said he’s pleased to serve as Jean-Sebastien Giguere’s backup for the remainder of the season.


“The only thing I could see is the Rangers going after Khabibulin,” Hebert said, referring to Nikolai Khabibulin, an unsigned restricted free agent. “Plus, the Rangers already have Kirk McLean. He’s a good veteran guy. I’m sure there has to be a story. It’s New York.”

Reports from New York indicated that Ranger General Manager Glen Sather was on the telephone with Phoenix Coyote executives asking about Khabibulin after Richter was injured Monday against the Chicago Blackhawks.

Hebert, 34, who has one season remaining on a three-season, $12-million contract with the Ducks, refused to comment when asked if he would OK a deal with the Rangers. Hebert’s contract includes a no-trade clause.

“You all know my contract situation,” he said. “If you’re asking me if I’m not going to be around, it’s not under my control. I’m content to be here with ‘Jiggy.’ There are no secrets or hidden agendas.”


Defenseman Ruslan Salei was sidelined Wednesday for a 13th game because of post-concussion syndrome. There are no plans for him to join center Steve Rucchin for an examination Friday with James Kelly, a Chicago concussion specialist. Rucchin also is suffering from post-concussion syndrome.

Salei was injured when he hit his head on the ice Jan. 17 against the Atlanta Thrashers. He believes he returned to the ice too early.


“We made a mistake when we started skating two weeks ago,” Salei said. “We went too hard. Maybe if we started more slowly, I’d be playing now.”