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New York Rangers Game Thread: 1/3, Sabres at Rangers

The Rangers look to grab two points away from the worst team in the Eastern Conference's other division.

Bruce Bennett/Getty Images
Game Thirty-Six, the Buffalo Sabres at the New York Rangers
Record: 20-11-4

Sabres vs Rangers coverage | NYR roster | Die By The Blade

Here we are gang, our first Rangers game of 2015! Tonight the Rangers play host to the Buffalo Sabres. Despite going on a nice little run a bit ago, the Sabres are in the basement of the Atlantic Division with a record of 14-22-3 and they're bringing a three game losing streak into the Garden tonight. So, why are the Sabres bad at hockey? They allow far too many goals and score far too few... which, apparently, is quite the hindrance when it comes to winning hockey games. After tonight's game the Rangers go on a a brutal three game road tour of the powerhouse California teams so picking up two points tonight is a pretty big deal. Here's hoping the Rangers look well rested, sharp, and on their game going up against a Sabres team that is still in the process of rebuilding.

The New York Rangers' January Schedule

1/3 Sabres at Rangers, 7:00
1/7 Rangers at Ducks, 10:30
1/8 Rangers at Kings, 10:30
1/10 Rangers at Sharks, 10:00
1/13 Islanders at Rangers, 7:00
1/15 Rangers at Bruins, 7:00
1/16 Rangers at Blue Jackets, 7:00
1/18 Rangers at Penguins, 12:30
1/20 Senators at Rangers, 7:00
1/27 Rangers at Islanders, 7:00
1/29 Canadiens at Rangers, 7:00
1/31 Hurricanes at Rangers, 7:00

Mike's Player to Watch: Derek Stepan

Steps has 25 points in 23 games this season. He has 11 points in his last 8 games and is coming off of a 3 assist night against the Panthers that came just 2 games after the hat trick he scored against the New Jersey Devils. Without a doubt, Rick Nash is the guy that is making it happen for the Rangers and there has been some well-earned talk about him getting the Hart, but it would be a mistake to overlook what Stepan has brought to the team since his return from a training camp injury. Stepan usually feasts on teams like the Sabres, look for him to have a big impact tonight and help the Rangers assert their dominance down the middle against Buffalo.

Hope you guys enjoy tonight's game. Let's go Rangers! How is your 2015 going?