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Open Game Thread: Rangers vs Avalanche

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Brian Bahr/Getty Images

For the first time since 2010, the Rangers will play their final game of the calendar year somewhere other than Florida, as they find themselves in the mile high city to take on the Colorado Avalanche. Despite a nucleus of young, talented players such as Matt Duchene, Gabriel Landeskog, and Nathan MacKinnon, the Avalanche are currently residing in their usual position of last place in the Central Division, struggling to keep up with the competition. A coaching chance from Patrick Roy to Jared Bednar was supposed to revitalize hockey in Colorado, but the hiring has been a disaster through the first part of the season. As both teams look to end the year on a high note, New York will roll out the following line combos:

Chris Kreider-Derek Stepan-Mats Zuccarello

Michael Grabner-Kevin Hayes-J.T. Miller

Jimmy Vesey-Oscar Lindberg-Jesper Fast

Matt Puempel-Marek Hrivik-Brandon Pirri

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Ryan McDonagh-Kevin Klein

Marc Staal-Nick Holden

Brady Skjei-Dan Girardi

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Henrik Lundqvist

Meanwhile, the Avalanche will look to counter New York with the following combinations:

Gabriel Landeskog-Nathan MacKinnon-Mikko Rantanen

Matt Duchene-Carl Soderberg-Rene Bourque

Blake Comeau-John Mitchell-Jarome Iginla

Cody McLeod-Andreas Martinsen-Rene Bourque

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Fedor Tyutin-Tyson Barrie

Francois Beauchemin-Nikita Zadorov

Patrick Wierchioch-Eric Gelinas

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Calvin Pickard

Player to Watch: Kevin Hayes, because duh, why not?

Enjoy the game!