After a successful road swing through Canada that saw the team earn back to back victories in Montreal and Toronto, the Blueshirts have returned to the United States for yet another road tilt. Tonight’s contest marks their first road trip against a Western Conference time in the COVID-19 era, as the Rangers will square off with Roman Josi, Jusse Saros, and the rest of the Nashville Predators.
In spite of earning four points on their road trip, the Blueshirts didn’t play particularly well, especially against Toronto, so some lineup changes will take affect tonight.
#NYR practice lines:— Vince Z. Mercogliano (@vzmercogliano) October 20, 2021
Panarin - Zib - Kreider
Laf - Chytil - Blais
Hunt - Rooney - Goodrow
Gauthier, Barron, McKegg and Reaves are rotating on the fourth.
Artemiy Panarin and Mika Zibanejad will skate together on New York’s top line tonight. Filip Chytil and Alexis Lafreniere will be on the second line, and the bottom six has uhhh, seen better days to say the last.
Player to Watch: Sammy Blais
Blais was one of the key players brought in over the summer to aid the Rangers in their quest to make themselves more physical and tougher to play against. While most envisioned that being in the bottom half of the lineup, the current circumstances surrounding the team have resulted in Blais skating on the second line tonight. It’ll be interesting to see how a player of his ilk meshes with Chytil and Lafreniere, or if he spends most of the time in the penalty box like he has early on. Either way, keep an eye on Blais whenever he hops over the boards.
Enjoy the game!