2024 playoffs: first round, washington capitals vs new york rangers game 1 open thread

the waiting is finally over. after five days out of action following the conclusion of the best regular season in franchise history, the rangers are set to take the ice to begin their latest playoff journey. for the first time since 2015, the rangers will take on the washington capitals in postseason action.

after squaring off five times in a seven year span from 2009-2015, the rangers and capitals are set to renew what was once a heated playoff rivalry that has gone somewhat dormant. not to say the teams haven't had any memorable moments in the meantime, the 2021 fight night at msg standing out as the most memorable moment of new york's four year playoff drought. that drought, and those teams, are in the past, and the 2024 rangers stand as the heavy favorite against the 2024 capitals.

no lineup changes are expected for the blueshirts, which means filip chytil will not be making his return quite yet. matt rempe gets the nod over jonny brodzinski on the fourth line, and jacob trouba remains on the third defensive pairing. igor shetserkin gets the nod in goal opposite washington's charlie lindgren.

player to watch: artemiy panarin

panarin went into the 2023 offseason looking to put his rough postseason performance behind him, and he did just that throughout the regular season. panarin recorded 120 points, the second highest single season total in franchise history, and will likely be the recipient of some mvp votes when ballots are revealed. for now, panarin will look to carry over his regular season dominance into the tight checking environment of the post season. keep an eye on panarin as he looks to spark the blueshirts to a victory to kick off a playoff run.

enjoy the game!