The Rangers have done just about everything right on this winning streak, which has raised the team's record to 9-3-3 and moved them within two points of both Pittsburgh and Philadelphia with two games in hand over each for the division lead.
But tonight's matchup against the Islanders, who are 1-6-3 in their last 10 games, isn't going to be a cakewalk. The Islanders always play solid hockey against the Rangers, and need a win badly.
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For the Rangers it's going to be a case of simply playing their game. They've beaten some very good teams the past six games, and can't lose their cool or composure emotionally against the Islanders. This includes Sean Avery, who needs to find the effective line tonight and toe it very carefully. The Islanders will be looking for ways to throw Avery off his game, so he needs to make sure things are working the other way around.
It will also be important for the Rangers to take home a big win before a long break. The Rangers' next game after tonight's contest is Saturday against Montreal. That's a long time to sit and think about a game you should have won, especially when it's against a division opponent like the Islanders.
But the Rangers can avoid all that by playing their hockey. Things have worked thus far during this streak, now the Rangers need to make it seven against a beatable team.