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game preview

Rangers at Wild preview

Minnesota tries to avoid fourth straight loss; Lundqvist seeks 450th win for New York

by Jessi Pierce / Correspondent

RANGERS (28-30-13) at WILD (33-30-8)

8 p.m. ET; FS-N, FS-WI, MSG, NHL.TV


The Game

The Minnesota Wild hope to avoid a fourth straight loss when they host the New York Rangers at Xcel Energy Center on Saturday.

Goalie Devan Dubnyk will start for the Wild, who have one win in their past 10 games at home (1-6-3). Minnesota is three points behind the Arizona Coyotes for the second wild card into the Stanley Cup Playoffs from the Western Conference. 

The Rangers, who lost 5-1 at the Calgary Flames on Friday, have lost three consecutive games (0-2-1) and have one win in their past 10 (1-4-5). They are 14 points behind the Columbus Blue Jackets for the second wild card from the East. 

Goalie Henrik Lundqvist, who is one win away from 450 in his NHL career, will start for New York. 


Players to watch

Rangers forward Ryan Strome has four points (two goals, two assists) in his past four games.

Wild forward Jason Zucker has nine points (seven goals, two assists) in his past 10 games. 


They said it

"We have a quick turnaround here. Have to try to get some positive energy going on the flight (to Minnesota) and trying to rebound." -- Rangers defenseman Marc Staal following Friday's 5-1 loss to the Calgary Flames

"(Our) compete level's got to go up. Work harder. Play smarter. …Show up. Do your job. Be the best at your job. Worry about yourself and the rest of it will take care of itself. (Tonight against the Rangers) is the biggest game of the year for us. We have to go into it ready to go and be ready to perform." -- Wild defenseman Ryan Suter


Rangers projected lineup

Chris Kreider -- Mika Zibanejad -- Jesper Fast

Vladislav Namestnikov -- Ryan Strome -- Filip Chytil

Brendan Lemieux -- Brett Howden -- Pavel Buchnevich

Jimmy Vesey -- Lias Andersson -- Connor Brickley

Brady Skjei -- Tony DeAngelo

Brendan Smith -- Kevin Shattenkirk

Marc Staal -- Neal Pionk

Henrik Lundqvist

Alexandar Georgiev

Scratched: Boo Nieves, Fredrik Claesson

Injured: Libor Hajek (shoulder)


Wild projected lineup

Zach Parise -- Eric Staal -- Jason Zucker 

Jordan Greenway -- Luke Kunin -- Kevin Fiala

Ryan Donato -- Victor Rask -- Pontus Aberg

Marcus Foligno -- Eric Fehr -- J.T. Brown

Ryan Suter -- Jared Spurgeon

Jonas Brodin -- Greg Pateryn 

Nick Seeler -- Brad Hunt

Devan Dubnyk

Alex Stalock

Scratched: Anthony Bitetto

Injured: Mikko Koivu (knee), Matt Dumba (ruptured right pectoral muscle), Joel Eriksson Ek (lower body) 


Status report

The Rangers did not have a morning skate. … Eriksson Ek is improving but is ruled out for this weekend. 


Stat pack

DeAngelo has 12 assists in his past 15 games and 14 assists in his past 19. ... The Rangers have allowed two goals or fewer (not including shootout goals) in four of the last seven games. Six of New York's last 10 games have been decided by one goal. … Minnesota is 6-4-0 in their past 10 home games against the Rangers. ... Dubnyk is 6-3-1, with a 2.23 goals-against average and .924 save percentage with one shutout in his past 10 starts.

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