The New York Rangers will head into the First Niagara Center tonight as they faceoff against the Buffalo Sabres. The last time these two teams met, the New York Rangers came away with the 3-2 shootout win on home ice. It's also the reunion between these two teams after Patrick Kaleta laid a nasty hit from behind on Brad Richards. Kaleta is serving out the last game of his suspensions through tonight's game, so he will not be in the lineup for the Buffalo Sabres.
New York Rangers(13-9-2) vs Buffalo Sabres (9-14-3)
First Niagara Center - Buffalo, NY - 7:00 PM
Television: MSG | Radio: ESPN NY 98.7
Opponent's Blog: Die By The Blade | Tickets: New York Rangers Tickets
After having their four game winning streak halted by the Ottawa Senators, the New York Rangers came out with a big 4-1 victory over the Washington Capitals on Sunday. Although they had a slow start, they made up for it by pouring on the offense, and eventually chasing Brayden Holtby after the third goal.
The Buffalo Sabres will be a little shorthanded tonight as they will be without Ryan Miller, and Tyler Ennis, along with Jordan Leopold, and Ville Leino being game-time decisions. Jhonas Enroth is expected to get the start tonight in place of Ryan Miller, who came down with a sinus infection, and will backup Enroth tonight. With a backup goaltender, and a shorthanded lineup on display for the Sabres, the Rangers cannot afford to let this one slip away.
While it may appear to be a simple game on paper, the Rangers should not take this one lightly as the Sabres still have plenty of firepower to make them pay. Quick starts haven't been a regular this season for the Rangers, so getting on the board quickly tonight can be a key factor.
Some Quick Thoughts:
- According to Andrew Gross, Arron Asham traveled with the team to Buffalo this morning, and was riding the stationary bike during practice. Although he didn't skate with the team, all signs are pointing towards him making a return to the lineup pretty soon.
- Roman Hamrlik will also be a scratch for the second straight game, as he continues to work and get back into game shape. Steve Eminger had a conditioning trip to Connecticut earlier on in the season, but the Rangers have opted to keep Hamrlik with the team. Connecticut Whale assistant coach Jim Schoenfeld was assigned to work with Hamrlik over the next week or two. John Tortorella stated that he wants Harmlik to get back to game-shape first, before they even consider inserting him into the lineup again.
- Henrik Lundqvist will be getting the start tonight, after receiving the day off on Sunday against the Washington Capitals. With a few days of rest in between, Lundqvist should be well rested and ready to go tonight.
Carl Hagelin - Brad Richards - Rick Nash
Marian Gaborik - Derek Stepan - Ryan Callahan
Taylor Pyatt - Brian Boyle - J.T. Miller
Micheal Haley - Jeff Halpern - Darroll Powe
Ryan McDonagh - Dan Girardi
Anton Stralman - Michael Del Zotto
Steve Eminger - Matt Gilroy
Scratches: Arron Asham (back spasms), Stu Bickel (health), Roman Hamrlik (healthy/conditioning), Marc Staal (eye)