STEPAN'S HAT TRICK POWERS RANGERS TO EIGHTH STRAIGHT WIN
Derek Stepan scored a shorthanded goal, power-play goal and an even strength goal for his third career hat trick to power the New York Rangers to their eighth consecutive victory. Per Elias, Stepan is the first Rangers player to score three such goals in one game since Brendan Shanahan on Dec. 3, 2006 against the New York Islanders.
* Stepan is the second Rangers player in as many games to have a hat trick, following Rick Nash on Tuesday against the Washington Capitals. Per Elias, the last time the Rangers had a hat trick in two consecutive games was Jan. 31 and Feb. 2, 1994 (Mike Gartner vs. PIT; Adam Graves vs. NYI).
* Stepan has four goals and eight points on his five-game point streak and ranks fourth on the Rangers with 22 points (six goals, 16 assists) in 21 games this season.
* The Rangers have won eight consecutive games for the first time since an equal stretch from Dec. 27, 1974 to Jan. 11, 1975.
* In addition, the Rangers have earned at least one point in 12 straight games against Metropolitan Division opponents (11-0-1). Elias says this marks the first time the Rangers have earned a point in 12 straight divisional matchups since the NHL adopted the four-division format in 1974-75.