New York Rangers Pregame: Mats Zuccarello Earning A Spot, Brad Richards To Play, Tonight's Line Combinations

There is a plethora of news to sort through this afternoon, as the New York Rangers prepare for their tilt against the New Jersey Devils tonight.

Both of the Rangers new offseason signings, Brad Richards and Mike Rupp, will be playing tonight; which should help put to bed any concern of Richards' sore groin yesterday. Although nothing will be set in stone this early, we should get a good look at who are the preliminary favorites to fill the wing slot on the Richards-Marian Gaborik line. 

For tonight, and as it has been mostly through training camp, it's Wojtek Wolski. Wolski hasn't just been auditioning for a role on the first line, he's been auditioning for a contract at the end of the year. 

Here are the combinations for tonight's matchup with the Devils: 

Wolski-Richards-Gaborik

Ruslan Fedotenko-Brian Boyle-Zuccarello

Mike Rupp-Khris Newbury-Dale Weise

Carl Hagelin-Derek Stepan-Ryan Callahan    

Brendan Bell, Michael Del Zotto, Tim Erixon, Ryan McDonagh, Mike Sauer, Pavel Valentenko

Martin Biron, Chad Johnson    

Stick salute to Jesse Spector for the line combinations. Those are just the defenseman, not the pairings, we'll update that as soon as the information is available. 

Zuccarello is also impressing in camp, and not just the media members. Many reports came out to day that Zuccarello was used heavily on the power play during the morning skate, which is a good sign for the young forward. 

The fact that he's getting a look with Boyle and Fedotenko tonight is a good sign as well, since he'll have ample opportunities to show he belongs with the big club. I've been saying for awhile now that I want to see Zuccarello make this team out of camp, tonight is just another opportunity for him to prove he belongs. 

The open game thread will open at 6:30 as usual guys, hope to see you there. 

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