New York Rangers Game Thread: Rangers Vs. Blue Jackets

Nash returns to Ohio.

The Cannon | New York Rangers schedule | Rangers vs Blue Jackets coverage

Eastern Standings

Boston Bruins 69 47-17-5 99
Pittsburgh Penguins 68 45-19-4 94
Montreal Canadiens 70 38-25-7 83
Tampa Bay Lightning 68 37-24-7 81
Toronto Maple Leafs 70 36-26-8 80
Philadelphia Flyers 68 36-25-7 79
New York Rangers 70 37-29-4 78
Columbus Blue Jackets 68 35-27-6 76
Washington Capitals 70 33-27-10 76
Detroit Red Wings 68 31-24-13 75
New Jersey Devils 69 29-27-13 71
Ottawa Senators 68 28-27-13 69
Carolina Hurricanes 69 30-30-9 69
New York Islanders 70 26-35-9 61
Florida Panthers 69 26-35-8 60
Buffalo Sabres 69 19-42-8 46

Look at those standings. Look where the Rangers are and look where the Blue Jackets are. The Rangers need the win tonight. It doesn't matter if it's pretty, all that matters is the four point swing the Rangers can pull off if they overcome the Blue Jackets tonight. The Rangers are 4-5-1 in their last 10 games and the Blue Jackets are 7-2-1 in their last 10. It's time for the Rangers to start putting some wins together and climbing up the standings because battling it out for a wildcard spot is not a comfortable place to be.

There are plenty of story lines to follow for tonight's game, but none more interesting than keeping tabs on all of the ex-Rangers and ex-Blue Jackets playing tonight. Normally I pull for ex-Rangers but tonight I hope they fail miserably, like Joe Fortunato failed at becoming a concert pianist.

Mike's Player to Watch: Rick Nash

He was my player to watch against Ottawa and he scored twice (one empty netter) so I figured I'd go ahead and pick him again. It's pretty appropriate considering this is his return to Columbus, a city that has very mixed feelings about the man that was the face of their franchise for so many years. The Rangers need their big guns in the final stretch here. The Rangers need their star players to be difference makers and start generating some offense because the Rangers defense has looked shaky lately. Look to Nash, St. Louis, Richards, Stepan, and Zuke to step it up here down the stretch because I'm not sure the Rangers are going to get to the postseason playing as inconsistently as they have been lately.