Open Thread: Rangers at Blue Jackets

After finally finding their way to the win column in Brooklyn, with a 2-1 victory over the New York Islanders, the New York Rangers are back in action in Columbus to take on the Blue Jackets in the second half of their back-to-back games.

The Blue Jackets have earned 55 points out of their 44 games with a 26-15-3 record, which puts them in third place in the Metropolitan Division. The Rangers, on the other hand, have earned just 43 points in their first 44 games, with an 18-19-7 record. Away from Madison Square Garden, the Rangers have had their struggles as shown by their 7-13-2 road record.

Rick Nash, who was drafted first overall in 2002 by the Blue Jackets and then their captain until being traded to New York, will drop the puck tonight. He announced his retirement from hockey earlier this week.

Alexandar Georgiev will once again be in the crease for the Rangers tonight. Fredrik Claesson, who left last game with an apparent shoulder injury, is out, opening a space for Brendan Smith to get back into the lineup. Neal Pionk, who missed yesterday’s game, is a game time decision. If out, Tony DeAngelo will likely absorb his place in the lineup again.

Columbus is also in the second half back-to-back games. They’ll have Sergei Bobrovsky in net and a few changes up in front of him.

Follow all of Blueshirt Banter on Twitter at: @BlueshirtBanter|@JoeFortunatoBSB | @DigDeepBSB | @BethMachlan | @Kpower90 | @HayyyShayyy | @AdamZHerman | @TomUrtzJr | @pdk_hockey | @Realallinhockey | @HockeyStatMiner | @JackMcKenna | @Phil Kocher | @OppenheimerEvan