RED WINGS (12-35-4) at RANGERS (23-21-4)
7 p.m. ET; ESPN+, MSG, FS-D+, NHL.TV
The New York Rangers will have forward Artemi Panarin back in the lineup when they host the Detroit Red Wings at Madison Square Garden on Friday in the first of a home-and-home.
New York, which trails the Carolina Hurricanes by 11 points for the second wild card into the Stanley Cup Playoffs from the Eastern Conference, is playing for the first time since a 4-2 loss to the New York Islanders Jan. 21. Panarin missed that game and the 2020 Honda NHL All-Star Game because of an upper-body injury. He has 13 points (four goals, nine assists) in his past six games and is fifth in the NHL in scoring with 68 points (26 goals, 42 assists).
The Rangers have scored three goals in their past two games.
Detroit has been outscored 29-10 during a six-game winless streak (0-5-1). This is the Red Wings' first game since Jan. 22.
Players to watch
Red Wings center Dylan Larkin has two goals and three assists during a three-game point streak. He has 12 points (four goals, eight assists) in his past 11 games.
Rangers forward Chris Kreider has scored three goals in his past four games.
They said it
"Obviously, the break was nice; everybody stayed away. It's been a tough go, but hopefully now with 31 games left, we can play better, win some games and kind of feel better about ourselves." -- Red Wings center Valtteri Filppula
"Right now, regardless of who we're playing, these points are points we have to have. Obviously when the season starts, every team states that they want to make the playoffs; we're no different than anybody else. We can't think about that. We have to think about taking care of the task at hand and being dialed in night in and night out, regardless of our opponent." -- Rangers coach David Quinn
Red Wings projected lineup
Tyler Bertuzzi -- Dylan Larkin -- Filip Zadina
Brendan Perlini -- Valtteri Filppula -- Robby Fabbri
Darren Helm -- Frans Nielsen -- Adam Erne
Givani Smith -- Luke Glendening -- Justin Abdelkader
Patrik Nemeth -- Filip Hronek
Dennis Cholowski -- Madison Bowey
Jonathan Ericsson -- Alex Biega
Scratched: Christoffer Ehn, Trevor Daley
Injured: Andreas Athanasiou (lower body), Anthony Mantha (upper body), Mike Green (finger), Danny DeKeyser (back), Jonathan Bernier (lower body)
Rangers projected lineup
Chris Kreider -- Mika Zibanejad -- Pavel Buchnevich
Artemi Panarin -- Ryan Strome -- Jesper Fast
Brendan Lemieux -- Filip Chytil -- Kaapo Kakko
Brett Howden -- Greg McKegg -- Brendan Smith
Ryan Lindgren -- Jacob Trouba
Marc Staal -- Tony DeAngelo
Brady Skjei -- Adam Fox
Scratched: Micheal Haley, Alexandar Georgiev
Ericsson will play for the first time since he broke his nose against the Los Angeles Kings on Dec. 15. ... Nielsen is expected to return after he missed Detroit's last game before the All-Star break because of an upper-body injury. ... Athanasiou has returned to practice, but the forward, who has been out since Dec. 29, will not play. He is also unlikely to play Saturday against the Rangers in Detroit. ... Bernier participated in the morning skate but is not expected to play this weekend; the goalie has missed the past six games. … Strome is expected to play after leaving practice early on Thursday because of the flu.
Filppula will play his 999th NHL game. Zadina has four points (three goals, one assist) in his past four games. Howard is 0-14-2 in his past 16 games. … Zibanejad has four points (one goal, three assists) in his past three games.