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Rangers at Islanders preview

Home team seeks eighth straight win against New York rival

by Brian Compton @BComptonNHL / NHL.com Deputy Managing Editor

RANGERS (9-7-2) at ISLANDERS (9-6-2)

7 p.m. ET; MSG+ 2, MSG, NHL.TV

 

The Game

The New York Islanders will seek their eighth straight win against the New York Rangers when they play at Barclays Center on Thursday.

It's the first time since entering the NHL in 1972 that the Islanders have won seven consecutive regular-season games against the Rangers; they are 6-0-0 all-time against them at Barclays Center and have won 11 of the past 12 games between the teams.

The Rangers are 6-0-1 in their past seven games. It's their longest point streak since a 13-game run (11-0-2) from Oct. 18-Nov. 15, 2015.

 

Players to watch

Rangers goalie Henrik Lundqvist has 437 wins (377 in regulation/overtime, 60 in shootouts) in his NHL career and can pass Jacques Plante for sole possession of seventh on the all-time list with a victory.

Islanders center Mathew Barzal has one goal and three assists during a three-game point streak.

 

They said it

"It's an important game; a team that's right there with us in the division. Important points on the line. You always have great support out there, a lot of Ranger fans. It's usually a great atmosphere. Just go out there and enjoy it and play hard. I think so far obviously the record doesn't lie; they've been better than us at the Barclays Center, so we're going to do what we can here to turn that around." -- Rangers goaltender Henrik Lundqvist

 

"Both teams get up for these games. The atmosphere is fantastic. You always look forward to these ones because there's a little bit more on the line. Obviously, a huge divisional game tonight in a really tight conference. It's going to be a good game." -- Islanders forward Anders Lee

 

Rangers projected lineup

Filip Chytil -- Mika Zibanejad -- Mats Zuccarello

Chris Kreider -- Kevin Hayes -- Vladislav Namestnikov

Jimmy Vesey -- Brett Howden -- Jesper Fast

Cody McLeod -- Lias Andersson - Vinni Lettieri

Brady Skjei -- Tony DeAngelo

Marc Staal -- Neal Pionk

Fredrik Claesson -- Kevin Shattenkirk

Henrik Lundqvist

Alexandar Georgiev

Scratched: Brendan Smith, Ryan Spooner

Injured: Adam McQuaid (lower body), Pavel Buchnevich (broken thumb)

 

Islanders projected lineup

Anders Lee -- Mathew Barzal -- Josh Bailey

Anthony Beauvillier -- Brock Nelson -- Jordan Eberle

Tom Kuhnhackl -- Valtteri Filppula -- Leo Komarov

Ross Johnston -- Stephen Gionta -- Cal Clutterbuck

Nick Leddy -- Ryan Pulock

Adam Pelech -- Johnny Boychuk

Thomas Hickey -- Scott Mayfield

Thomas Greiss

Robin Lehner

Scratched: Luca Sbisa, Michael Dal Colle

Injured: Matt Martin (upper body), Casey Cizikas (lower body), Andrew Ladd (lower body)

 

Status report

The Rangers did not have a morning skate. Zuccarello practiced Wednesday and is expected to return after missing three games because of a groin injury. … Ladd is out indefinitely and Cizikas will miss 2-3 weeks; each has been placed on injured reserve. Martin was also placed on injured reserve but skated again Thursday morning. Gionta and Dal Colle were recalled from Bridgeport of the American Hockey League.

 

Stat pack

Pionk has four points (three goals, one assist) in his past five games. ... Nelson has four points (one goal, three assists) during a three-game point streak. Bailey has three goals in his past three games.

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