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game preview

Coyotes at Rangers preview

Stepan returns to Madison Square Garden with Arizona; New York's Nash to play 1,000th game

by Dan Rosen @drosennhl / Senior Writer

COYOTES (0-8-1) at RANGERS (2-6-2)

7 p.m. ET; MSG, FS-A, NHL.TV


The Game

Arizona Coyotes center Derek Stepan returns to Madison Square Garden on Thursday as a visiting player for the first time to play his former team, the New York Rangers.

Stepan spent seven seasons with the Rangers, playing in 515 regular-season games and another 97 in the Stanley Cup Playoffs. He was traded to the Coyotes on June 23.

"What kind of ovation am I going to get? Am I going to get booed? Will I get an ovation?" Stepan said. "I don't know what to expect."

The Coyotes are the only winless team remaining in the NHL. They are coming off a 5-3 loss at the New York Islanders at Barclays Center on Tuesday.

The Rangers lost 4-1 against the San Jose Sharks at MSG on Monday.


Players to watch

Rookie forward Clayton Keller, who plays on the top line with Stepan and Max Domi, leads the Coyotes with six goals and 10 points, and has six points (three goals, three assists during a three-game point streak.

Rangers forward Rick Nash has one goal despite being tied for sixth in the NHL with 39 shots on goal.


They said it

"I just think the mistakes we're making, and I hate putting it on this all the time, are inexperienced mistakes. In my opinion, we made five mistakes against the Islanders, five goals-against. That's the way it's going." -- Coyotes center Derek Stepan

"I feel like my game is good. I feel like I'm around the puck and I'm close. So many chances. So many posts. I've just got to stick with it." -- Rangers forward Rick Nash on his and the team's tough start to the season


Coyotes projected lineup

Max Domi -- Derek Stepan -- Clayton Keller

Tobias Rieder -- Christian Dvorak -- Brendan Perlini

Anthony Duclair -- Brad Richardson -- Jordan Martinook

Mario Kempe -- Nick Cousins -- Christian Fischer

Oliver Ekman-Larsson -- Jason Demers

Alex Goligoski -- Luke Schenn

Niklas Hjalmarsson -- Adam Clendening

Adin Hill

Louis Domingue

Scratched: Zac Rinaldo , Kevin Connauton

Injured: Antti Raanta (lower body), Jakob Chychrun (knee)


Rangers projected lineup

Rick Nash -- Mika Zibanejad -- J.T. Miller

Jimmy Vesey -- Kevin Hayes -- Jesper Fast

Chris Kreider -- David Desharnais -- Mats Zuccarello

Michael Grabner -- Boo Nieves -- Pavel Buchnevich

Ryan McDonagh -- Brendan Smith

Marc Staal -- Kevin Shattenkirk

Brady Skjei -- Nick Holden

Ondrej Pavelec

Henrik Lundqvist

Scratched: Steven Kampfer, Paul Carey

Injured: None


Status report

The Coyotes lineup is not confirmed because Perlini will be a game-time decision. He hasn't played since sustaining a concussion against the Vegas Golden Knights on Oct. 10. … Nieves will make his season debut. He was recalled from Hartford of the American Hockey League on Tuesday. Pavelec will make his second start of the season.


Stat pack

The Coyotes are allowing two goals per game more than they're scoring (4.33-2.33). … Nash will play his 1,000th NHL game. The Rangers are allowing one goal per game more than they're scoring (3.50-2.50).

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