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Open Game Thread: Rangers vs. Blue Jackets

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NHL: New York Rangers at Philadelphia Flyers Eric Hartline-USA TODAY Sports

Well, we’re in a different place than we thought we’d be on Tuesday night, when the Blue Jackets were still streaking strong and the Rangers had just played one of their worst games of the season against Buffalo. Since then, the Blueshirts beat the Flyers in front of a top-form Henrik Lundqvist, and Columbus ended their streak, uh, decisively, getting hammered 5-0 by the Caps.

The Rangers could go either way tonight (that’s true most nights, actually). So a lot depends on whether the Blue Jackets are demoralized by their recent drubbing, or intend to show that the loss, not the streak, was a fluke. Columbus will have their backup Curtis McIlhinney in net, but as we all know nothing makes a backup (or even a call-up) goaltender shine like playing the Rangers. Then again, Lundqvist has a .936 SV% in his last seven meetings with the Blue Jackets, so .... it’s Anything-Can-Happen Night in Columbus, folks!

I’ve been to Columbus once. They put eggs in everything, even fruit salad. It was terrible.

This is why I don’t write the game threads.

ANYWAY, who to watch? I’m going to say Miller and Kreider, although Stepan has a great record against Columbus, too. Going the other way, maybe I’m a little obsessed with defense (why? dunno) but rookie Zach Werenski has 25 points. Oh, and Brandon Saad smiles too much.

It’s still snowing. Stay safe, New York.