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Pregame Notes: Rangers vs. Capitals 03.05.20

by New York Rangers @NYRangers

RANGERS vs. CAPITALS, 7:00 pm
Madison Square Garden
MSG, 98.7 FM

GAME DAY
The Rangers play their 67th game of the 2019-20 season and continue a four-game homestand tonight, March 5, against the Washington Capitals in a Metropolitan Division matchup at Madison Square Garden. The Blueshirts have won five of the last eight games (5-3-0 record), nine of the last 13 games (9-4-0 record), 10 of the last 15 games (10-50 record), and 12 of the last 18 games (12-6-0 record).

RANGERS VS. CAPITALS

  • All-Time: 98-97-18-11 (54-44-9-5 at home; 44-53-9-6 on the road) 
  • 2019-20: Tonight's game is the third of four meetings between the Rangers and Capitals, and the second of two meetings between the two teams at MSG. The Rangers have posted a 1-1-0 record (1-0-0 at home; 0-1-0 on the road) and the Blueshirts won the last meeting between the two teams, 4-1, on Nov. 20 at MSG. Artemi Panarin leads all skaters with three goals in the season series, while he and Pavel Buchnevich (two goals, one assist) are tied for the team lead with three points in the two games. The Rangers are 3-for-7 (42.9%) on the power play in the two games. Following tonight's game, the Rangers and Capitals will face each other on the following date: Mar. 26 (at Washington). 
  • Nine of the last 11 meetings between New York and Washington have been decided by two or fewer goals.  

RANGERS-CAPITALS CONNECTIONS

  • Carl Hagelin played parts of four seasons with the Rangers (2011-12 - 2014-15). 
  • Capitals Assistant Coach Scott Arniel was the Rangers' Associate Coach for five seasons (2013-14 - 2017-18). 
  • Capitals General Manager Brian MacLellan played with the Rangers during the 1985-86 season. 
  • Capitals President Dick Patrick is the grandson of Lester Patrick, the Rangers' first Head Coach (1926-27 - 1938-39) and the
  • Rangers' General Manager from 1926-27 - 1945-46. He is also the son of Muzz Patrick, who was a player, Head Coach, and
  • General Manager of the Rangers, the nephew of Lynn Patrick, who played and coached for the Blueshirts, and is cousins with Craig Patrick, who was either the Rangers' Head Coach and/or General Manager from 1980-81 through July 14, 1986. 
  • Artemi Panarin and Ilya Kovalchuk were teammates with SKA St. Petersburg in the Kontinental Hockey League (KHL) for two seasons (2013-14 and 2014-15) and helped SKA win the Gagarin Cup in 2014-15. Panarin and Kovalchuk have both won the Valeri Kharlamov Trophy as the Russian Player of the Year in their career. The two players also helped Russia earn a silver medal at the 2015 IIHF World Championship. 

INDIVIDUAL CAREER STATISTICS VS. CAPITALS

  • Ryan Strome - 23 GP, 5-11-16 - Strome has tallied a point in seven of his last 11 games against the Capitals (three goals, four assists). 
  • Mika Zibanejad - 24 GP, 5-9-14 - Zibanejad has posted a multi-point game in three of his last five games against the Capitals (one goal, five assists). 
  • Artemi Panarin - 14 GP, 8-4-12 - Panarin has tallied a goal/point in each of his last four games against Washington (five goals), and he has also registered a point in seven of his last eight contests against the Capitals (seven goals, two assists). 
  • Pavel Buchnevich - 11 GP, 3-1-4 - Buchnevich enters the contest with a three-game goal/point streak against Washington (three goals, one assist).  

TAKING THE METRO
Including tonight's game, each of the Rangers' next two games and eight of their final 16 regular-season games in 2019-20 are against teams in the Metropolitan Division. The Blueshirts have earned a win in 13 of their last 18 games against Metropolitan Division opponents (13-5-0 record) and have posted a 13-7-0 record against teams in the Metropolitan Division this season. 

WINNING WAYS
The Rangers have recorded 30 regulation wins this season and have earned 34 of their 35 wins in 2019-20 in either regulation or the five-minute overtime period. New York's 30 regulation wins in 2019-20 are tied for the fifth-most in the NHL (tied with Washington and Edmonton) and are tied for the most in the Metropolitan Division. 

RANK AND FILE
Since Jan. 7, the Blueshirts are tied for third in the NHL in wins (16), are tied for second in regulation wins (14), rank fifth in points (32), and rank third in goals per game (3.36). 

GOALS GALORE
The Blueshirts have tallied at least three goals in six of the last eight games, in 10 of the last 13 games, and in 12 of the last 16 games. New York ranks seventh in the NHL in goals per game this season (3.29). The Rangers have tallied at least 218 goals through the first 66 games of a season for the first time since 1995-96 (230).

THIRD PERIOD IS THE CHARM
The Blueshirts have outscored opponents, 84-60, in the third period this season, and their plus-24 goal differential in the third period this season is the best in the NHL. Mika Zibanejad and Artemi Panarin are tied for fourth in the NHL in goals in the third period this season (16). 

HART-EMI
Artemi Panarin is one of five active NHL players who have tallied at least 400 points in their first five seasons in the league (Ovechkin, Crosby, McDavid, and Malkin). He posted a career-high 13-game point streak from Feb. 7 - Mar. 1 (five goals, 14 assists), and the 13game point streak was tied for the fourth-longest in the NHL this season. Panarin recorded his 90th point of the season on Mar. 1 vs. Philadelphia, and he is one of nine players who have tallied at least 90 points in a season in franchise history (Jean Ratelle, Rod Gilbert, Vic Hadfield, Mike Rogers, Mark Messier, Brian Leetch, Wayne Gretzky, and Jaromir Jagr). He ranks fourth in the NHL in points (90) and ranks second in the NHL (first among forwards) in plus/minus rating (plus-33) this season. Panarin also leads the NHL in even strength points (67), even strength assists (42), 5-on-5 points (57), and 5-on-5 assists (36) this season. He has notched a point in 32 of the Rangers' 35 wins in 2019-20. 

MIKA MAGIC
Mika Zibanejad was selected as the NHL's Second Star of the Month for the month of February. Since Jan. 31, his 15 goals and 27 points are both the second-most in the NHL. Zibanejad posted a career-high nine-game point streak from Feb. 11 - Feb. 27 and a career-high six-game goal streak from Feb. 16 - Feb. 27, and his six-game goal streak was tied for the longest goal streak in the NHL this season. He has tallied a point in 11 of the last 12 games (11 goals, eight assists), and he has recorded a goal in eight of the last nine games. Zibanejad has established a career-high in goals this season (33), and he is the first Ranger who has tallied 30 or more goals in two consecutive seasons since Jaromir Jagr in 2005-06 and 2006-07. He is tied for seventh in the NHL (min. 10 games played) in points per game (1.25) and ranks fifth in the NHL (min. 10 games played) in goals per game (0.62) this season. 

BREAD AND BUTTER
Artemi Panarin and Mika Zibanejad are the first pair of Rangers to tally at least 32 goals in the same season since Mark Messier and Adam Graves in 1996-97. 

ALEXANDAR THE GREAT
Alexandar Georgiev has established a career-high in wins (16) and has tied his career-high in games started (30) this season. Georgiev has won 13 games when making at least 30 saves this season; his 13 different 30-save wins are tied for the fifth-most in the NHL in 2019-20.  

WHAT THE FOX SAYS
Adam Fox leads NHL rookies in plus/minus rating (plus-19) and takeaways (56) this season. His 56 takeaways are the second-most an NHL rookie defenseman has recorded in one season since the league began tracking the statistic in 2005-06. Fox also ranks third among NHL rookie defensemen in assists (28) and points (35) in 2019-20. 

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