NEW YORK, NY - DECEMBER 11: Shawn Matthias #18 of the Florida Panthers controls the puck in front of Steve Eminger #44 of the New York Rangers at Madison Square Garden on December11, 2011 in New York City. Rangers defeated the Panthers 6-1. (Photo by Mike Stobe/Getty Images)
The New York Rangers will look to take their third straight game tonight, against the Florida Panthers. Last game, the Rangers made a stellar comeback in the 2012 Winter Classic, and hopefully that momentum carries over. The Rangers also have no more distractions as the HBO camera's are no longer present, and the anticipation leading up the Winter Classic is over as well. Here are tonight's keys to the game.
Stay Focused: The last game against the Panthers got pretty heated at the end, including a Tomas Kopecky sucker punch that didn't sit too kindly with the Rangers. However, the Rangers cannot be looking for revenge tonight, and they need to keep their heads clear, and minds focused. As we saw in the Winter Classic, if the Rangers stick to their game, the goals will eventually come.
Lock It Down Defensively: While this Florida team may not look threatening on paper, they sure can provide the offensive touch. With the recent return of Marc Staal, the Rangers defense just got that much stronger. Although, they still need to lock it down tonight, and not take this Florida team lightly.
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Goaltending Match-up: It looks as if Martin Biron will be getting the start for the New York Rangers tonight, along with Scott Clemmensen for the Florida Panthers. Jose Theodore went out with a injury in his last game, and will be out up to 2 weeks in time. The last time the Rangers faced Clemmensen, they chased him from the net after allowing three goals in the first period.