The New York Rangers will head onto Long Island tonight, where they are set to battle it out with their crosstown rivals, the New York Islanders. This will be the third time these two teams have met this season, where the Rangers and Islanders have each split the season series at one. Here is tonight's preview.
New York Rangers (11-8-2) vs New York Islanders (10-11-2)
Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum - New York, NY - 7:00 PM
Television: MSG | Radio: ESPN NY 98.7
Opponent's Blog: Lightouse Hockey | Tickets: New York Rangers Tickets
The New York Rangers have finally found their groove as of late, and are currently holding a three game winning streak heading into tonight. Their latest win was a 4-2 victory over the Philadelphia Flyers on Tuesday evening, where their win proved costly. Marc Staal went down with an eye injury, after a deflected puck struck him just above his left eye. Staal will remain out indefinitely, but the injury doesn't appear to be career threatening, which is great to hear.
The New York Islanders on the other hand, are 5-4-1 in their last ten games, and have won two straight. John Tavares continues to light it up for the Islanders this season as he currently sits at third in the National Hockey League for goals.
Every time these two teams match up, it will always be a battle, regardless of what place either team is currently possessing. The Rangers have been very aggressive in the offensive zone as of late, and it's allowing to gain zone time and threaten the opposition.
Some Quick Thoughts:
- Brad Richards will miss his second straight game tonight, after he was cross checked from behind by Patrick Kaleta. Luckily, Richards shot down at sort of rumor that he was dealing with a concussion, but rather just some body soreness. He also stated that he didn't want to risk further injury by returning to action earlier than ecpected.
- It should be fun watching Michael Haley go up against his former club tonight, and I expect that he will get into at least one fight. Eric Boulton will dress tonight in place of David Ullstrom, in order to add some toughness into their lineup.
- Henrik Lundqvist will get the start once again for the New York Rangers tonight, while Evgeni Nabakov will start in net for the Islanders.
Carl Hagelin - Derek Stepan - Rick Nash
Marian Gaborik - J.T. Miller - Ryan Callahan
Taylor Pyatt - Brian Boyle - Darroll Powe
Stu Bickel - Jeff Halpern - Micheal Haley
Ryan McDonagh - Dan Girardi
Anton Stralman - Michael Del Zotto
Steve Eminger - Roman Hamrlik / Matt Gilroy
Scratches: Arron Asham (back spasms)