The Rangers begin their Western Canada road trip tonight with a stop in Edmonton to take on Connor McDavid and some other guys. The puck drops at the godawful time of 9pm Eastern Standard Time in Edmonton so make sure you grab your coffee.
New York hits the road after picking up a solid 4-2 win at MSG against the New Jersey Devils over the weekend, snapping a five game losing streak. Ryan Strome scored twice, Libor Hajek picked up his first NHL goal (though he did separate his shoulder later in the game), and Vlad Namestnikov picked up a goal as well. Henrik Lundqvist picked up his 18th win of the season in what was a rather easy game for the Swedish netminder.
As for Edmonton, it’s more of the same. Connor McDavid, Leon Draisaitl, and Ryan Nugent-Hopkins are all great but everyone else is either bad, hurt, or hurt and bad. Cam Talbot was traded to Philadelphia for Anthony Stolarz and Stolarz immediately became the best goalie the Oilers have had in two years. Though, because the Western Conference is a tire fire, the Oilers still have some slight glimmer of hope of a playoff berth. Coming into tonight’s game; the Oilers have 67 points in 68 games, which is just 7 points behind Minnesota’s 74 points currently occupying the second Wild Card spot.
What makes all of this funny, or sad depending on your perspective, is that this game is also important to the Rangers since New York has 68 points in 68 games played. Which means the Rangers have one point up on the Oilers and therefore Edmonton has slightly better lottery odds. It’s a weird season.
It sounds like the Rangers are going to line up similarly to Saturday’s game with only notable exceptions being Lias Andersson and Tony DeAngelo being the scratches.
Tony D and Lias were doing the bag skate this morning at Rogers Place. They are both out of the lineup tonight for the @NYRangers game against Edmonton.— Colin Stephenson (@ColinASteph) March 11, 2019
And for some thoughts on being a healthy scratch, here’s DeAngelo:
Tony D on being scratched: "We got seven good defensemen, like we been saying all year. So, the guys gotta play. Freddie hasn’t played in a bit, so, Freddie will play. That’s it. No explanation needed. He’s the coach; we’re the players.''— Colin Stephenson (@ColinASteph) March 11, 2019
And finally, Alexander Georgiev gets the start in Alberta tonight:
Also, since Lundqvist skated this morning, and Georgiev didn't, that means Georgiev is in goal tonight.— Colin Stephenson (@ColinASteph) March 11, 2019
As for Edmonton, here’s a nice simple tweet for you
Draisaitl-McDavid-Kassian— Reid Wilkins (@ReidWilkins) March 11, 2019
Rattie extra. Lucic not on the ice.
Expected #Oilers lineup tonight vs NYR.
Enjoy the game tonight, folks