New York Rangers vs. Columbus Blue Jackets: Game Thread

Judging by last night’s performance in Detroit, the tank is alive, well, and headed to Ohio to roll over bump into the Blue Jackets, who lead the Metropolitan with a record of 9-6-1. The Rangers will be attempting to bounce back from an overtime loss that managed to be both breathtakingly boring and spectacularly irritating; Columbus, on the other hand, beat the Capitals 2-1. One of the Blue Jackets’ two goals came from some kid named Anthony Duclair of whom I have never heard; I have especially not heard that he has 10 points in 16 games. Nor have I thought about how he might add to that tally tonight. Not one bit.

In net, it will be battle of the backups: Alexandar Georgiev (.897) vs. Joonas Korpisalo (.884 but hey come to the Garden kid we’ll boost that right up for you). We’ll see if the Kevin Hayes Show gets extended for another night, if Gustav Nyquist gave Brendan Smith back the pants he stripped off him (nope: see below), and if Kevin Shattenkirk recovered from the small stroke he clearly suffered in the middle of that epically bad 3 on 3. (YES I know he was exhausted; that doesn’t explain why he looked as if he had no idea where he was and Kreider had to literally push him into position.)

Evergreen prediction against hot teams: the Rangers will play well enough to make it %^&$# frustrating when they lose. Also, Marc Staal is in. Always and forever.