As time ticks away with Derek Stepan not in the Rangers training camp there’s growing doubt that when he comes back — if he comes back — that he can fit right in immediately.

There was no news on Saturday concerning the restricted free agent’s contract holdout as both the team and Stepan’s agent are negotiating over terms. And with now two days of full practice behind them coach Alain Vigneault seems to be getting a bit worried about Stepan’s absence.

“Any player because of injury or contract issues or whatever circumstances that doesn’t start at the same time as his fellow teammates he’s got some catching up to do” said Vigneault who then referenced Canadiens defenseman P.K. Subban who was in the same spot as Stepan last season and once his contract was signed returned to win the Norris Trophy.