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Rangers Vs. Lightning: Keys To The Game

The New York Rangers are coming off a tough loss to the Toronto Maple Leafs on home ice. The Leafs remain the only team to beat the Rangers in regulation at home this season. Tonight the Rangers will look to get back in the win column against the Tampa Bay Lightning.

The last meeting between these two teams ended up in a 4-2 Ranger win down south. Tampa has dropped the last five games, but they are not to underestimated.

Ryan McDonagh and Dan Girardi Eating Up Big Minutes: With the recent injury to Michael Sauer against the Toronto Maple Leafs, the Rangers bottom four defensemen look very vulnerable. Look for both Dan Girardi and Ryan McDonagh to take on even more ice time, than they have before. However, this also gives the opportunity for others step up and have a big game as well.

The Power Play: This has been a reoccurring theme in our keys to the game, but the Rangers are finally getting the hand of the power play. They have had great puck movement and have even scored a few over the last couple of games. If given the chance early tonight, the Rangers need to capitalize.

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Keep The Momentum: Tampa has some serious fire power up front with Steven Stamkos, Martin St.Louis and Vincent Leavalier. Although they are currently slumping, they can rebound at any given time. The Rangers need to gain and keep the momentum from the opening face-off. The last time the Rangers faced the Lightning, they were trailing the entire game, and were able to fight back and the get the win. If the Rangers have the chance, they need to grab it quickly and use the home crowd to their advantage.