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Pregame Notes: Rangers vs. Coyotes 10.26.17

by New York Rangers @NYRangers / NYRangers.com

NEW YORK RANGERS vs. ARIZONA COYOTES
Thursday, Oct. 26, 2017, 7:00 p.m. ET
Madison Square Garden - New York, NY
 
Rangers: 2-6-2 (6 pts)
Coyotes: 0-8-1 (1 pts)
 
TONIGHT'S GAME
The Rangers play their 11th game of the 2017-18 season and conclude their season-long, six-game homestand tonight, Oct. 26, against the Arizona Coyotes at Madison Square Garden (7:00 p.m. ET - TV: MSG Network; Radio: ESPN 98.7 FM). Tonight's contest is also the third of three consecutive games the Rangers are playing against Western Conference opponents.

RANGERS VS. COYOTES

  • All-Time*: 45-25-6-0 (26-10-2-0 at home; 19-15-4-0 on the road) *Note: All-Time record includes games against the Winnipeg Jets from 1979-80 - 1995-96 and the Phoenix Coyotes from 1996-97 - 2013-14
  • 2017-18: Tomorrow's game is the first of two meetings between the Rangers and Coyotes, and the only meeting between the two teams at MSG. Following tomorrow's contest, the Rangers and Coyotes will play against each other on the following date: Jan. 6 (at Arizona).
  • 2016-17: The Rangers posted a 2-0-0 record (1-0-0 at home; 1-0-0 on the road). The Blueshirts outscored the Coyotes, 9-5, in the season series. Kevin Hayes led all skaters with three assists in two games, while he and J.T. Miller tied for first among all skaters with three points in the season series.
  • The Rangers have won each of their last seven games against the Coyotes, dating back to Mar. 24, 2014. The Rangers' active seven-game winning streak against the Coyotes is their longest winning streak against the Jets/Coyotes franchise in the Blueshirts' franchise history. New York has tallied three or more goals in each of the seven contests, including four or more goals in six of the seven games, and the Rangers have outscored the Coyotes, 30-14, during the seven-game winning streak.
  • New York has won each of its last eight home games against the Coyotes, dating back to Nov. 24, 2008. In addition, the Rangers have won 17 of their last 19 home games against the Jets/Coyotes franchise, dating back to Jan. 6, 1992.

RANGERS-COYOTES CONNECTIONS

  • Derek Stepan played seven seasons with the Rangers (2010-11 - 2016-17) and was selected by the Rangers in the second round (51st overall) of the 2008 NHL Entry Draft.
  • Antti Raanta played two seasons with the Rangers (2015-16 and 2016-17).
  • Adam Clendening played one season with the Rangers (2016-17).
  • Anthony Duclair played part of one season with the Rangers (2014-15).
  • Ryan McDonagh, Brendan Smith, and Derek Stepan were all teammates at the University of Wisconsin for two seasons (2008-09 and 2009-10).
  • Max Domi is the son of former Ranger Tie Domi, who played in parts of three seasons with the Blueshirts (1990-91 - 1992-93).
  • Ryan McDonagh and Derek Stepan were teammates while representing the United States at the 2014 Winter Olympics and at the 2016 World Cup of Hockey.
  • Chris Kreider and Derek Stepan helped the United States win a gold medal at the 2010 IIHF World Junior Championship.
  • Benoit Allaire was the Coyotes Goaltending Coach for seven seasons (1997-98 - 2003-04) before joining the Rangers organization.
  • Jim Schoenfeld served as the Coyotes Head Coach for two seasons (1997-98 and 1998-99).
  • Coyotes Assistant Coach John MacLean played parts of three seasons with the Rangers (1998-99 - 2000-01).
  • Kevin Hayes, Brady Skjei, and Christian Dvorak all represented the United States at the 2017 IIHF World Championship.
  • J.T. Miller and Adam Clendening represented the United States at the 2012 IIHF World Junior Championship.
  • Lindy Ruff was Alex Goligoski's head coach with the Stars for three seasons (2013-14 - 2015-16).
  • Scott Arniel was Kevin Connauton's head coach with the Chicago Wolves of the American Hockey League (AHL) for one season (2012-13).

INDIVIDUAL CAREER STATISTICS VS. COYOTES

  • Ondrej Pavelec - 11 GP, 7-2-1, 2.19 GAA, .927 SV%, 1 SO - In his last nine appearances against the Coyotes, Pavelec has posted a 7-1-0 record, along with a 2.02 GAA, a .931 SV%, and 1 SO.
  • Rick Nash - 40 GP, 19-17-36 - Nash has tallied 10 points (five goals, five assists) in his last 14 games against the Coyotes.
  • Chris Kreider - 6 GP, 6-1-7 - Kreider has registered a goal/point in each of his last five games against Arizona (six goals, one assist over the span).
  • Kevin Hayes - 6 GP, 3-5-8 - Hayes has tallied a point in five of six career games against Arizona, and tied single-game career-highs with three assists and three points in the Rangers' last game against the Coyotes on Dec. 29, 2016.
  • Kevin Shattenkirk - 21 GP, 3-12-15 - Shattenkirk has recorded a point in seven of his last nine games against the Coyotes, registering 10 points (two goals, eight assists) over the span.
  • J.T. Miller - 7 GP, 3-2-5 - Miller enters the contest with a three-game goal streak and a four-game point streak against Arizona. 

RANGERS CONNECTIONS (IN ADDITION TO CURRENTLY PLAYING WITH THE BLUESHIRTS)

  • Ryan McDonagh and Kevin Shattenkirk have represented the United States together in several tournaments, including the 2014 Winter Olympics, the 2011 IIHF World Championship, the 2009 IIHF World Junior Championship, and the 2007 IIHF World U18 Championship. McDonagh, Shattenkirk, and Chris Kreider were all teammates with Team USA at the 2011 IIHF World Championship.
  • Ryan McDonagh, Kevin Shattenkirk, and Brendan Smith were all selected in the first round of the 2007 NHL Entry Draft (McDonagh - 12th overall by Montreal; Shattenkirk - 14th overall by Colorado; Smith - 27th overall by Detroit).
  • Ryan McDonagh and Brendan Smith were teammates at the University of Wisconsin for three seasons (2007-08 - 2009-10).
  • Paul Carey, Chris Kreider, and Kevin Hayes were all teammates at Boston College for two seasons (2010-11 and 2011-12) and helped Boston College win the National Championship in 2011-12; Carey and Kreider were teammates for three seasons (2009-10 - 2011-12) and helped Boston College win two National Championships (2009-10 and 2011-12).
  • Kevin Hayes and Jimmy Vesey were friends growing up in Massachusetts.
  • J.T. Miller and Jimmy Vesey helped the United States win a gold medal at the 2013 IIHF World Junior Championship.
  • Kevin Hayes and Brady Skjei represented the United States at the 2017 IIHF World Championship.
  • Michael Grabner's first head coach in the NHL was Alain Vigneault (2009-10 with Vancouver).
  • Paul Carey and Nick Holden were teammates with Colorado for parts of two seasons (2013-14 and 2014-15).
  • Paul Carey and Kevin Shattenkirk were teammates with Washington for part of one season (2016-17).
  • Nick Holden and Rick Nash were teammates with Columbus for part of one season (2010-11).
  • Kevin Shattenkirk is a native of New Rochelle, New York. He was a Rangers fan growing up, and his favorite player was Brian Leetch. 

GOALS GALORE
The Rangers have registered at least three goals in three of the last four games (12 goals over the span), and 10 different Blueshirts have tallied a goal in the four contests. Through 10 games this season, 14 different Rangers have registered at least one goal. The Blueshirts are one of 10 NHL teams that have at least 14 players who have tallied a goal this season, and the only teams that have more players who have recorded a goal than the Rangers have are Pittsburgh (16), Columbus (15), Colorado (15), and Toronto (15). The Rangers have averaged 3.00 goals per game at MSG since the start of last season (147 goals in regulation/overtime in 49 games).
 
EVEN IT UP
The Blueshirts have 12 players who have recorded an even strength goal this season. The Rangers are tied for fifth in the NHL in players who have tallied at least one even strength goal in 2017-18.
 
SHOOTING GALLERY
The Blueshirts have registered at least 30 shots on goal in six of the last seven games and in eight of 10 games in 2017-18.
 
AV SQUAD
Alain Vigneault has earned 616 career wins as an NHL head coach, and he is one win away from tying Jacques Lemaire for 13th place on the league's all-time wins list among head coaches. Vigneault leads all Rangers head coaches (min. 100 games coached) in points percentage in franchise history (.618).
 
RICK ROLLING
Rick Nash is expected to skate in his 1,000th career NHL game in tomorrow's contest. Nash will become the 312th player in NHL history (314th player including goaltenders) to play in at least 1,000 career games. Since he entered the NHL at the start of the 2002-03 season, Nash ranks fourth in the league in goals (417) and ranks second in shots on goal (3,433). He is one of two NHL players who have tallied at least 20 goals in 12 different seasons since 2003-04 (along with Alex Ovechkin). He has recorded at least four shots on goal in eight of 10 games this season, and he is one of three NHL players who have recorded four or more shots on goal in at least eight games in 2017-18 (along with Alex Ovechkin and Phil Kessel).
 
PAV'S PARTY
Ondrej Pavelec is expected to start tomorrow's game. He enters the game with 9,998 saves in his NHL career and is two saves away from becoming the third Czech-born goaltender in NHL history to make 10,000 saves in his career (along with Dominik Hasek and Tomas Vokoun).
 
SHATT STATS
Kevin Shattenkirk skated in his 500th career NHL game on Oct. 23 vs. San Jose. He has tallied a point in six of 10 games this season (two goals, five assists). Shattenkirk is tied for fourth among NHL defensemen in games with a point (six) and is tied for fifth among NHL defensemen in games with an assist (five) this season. He is also tied for fourth among NHL defensemen in power play points this season (four).
 
IT'S MILLER TIME
J.T. Miller has tallied an assist/point in five of the last nine games (two goals, six assists), and he leads the Rangers in assists (six) and points (eight) this season.
 
MIKA MAGIC
Mika Zibanejad recorded a goal/point in each of the Rangers' first four games in 2017-18. Zibanejad became the second player in Rangers history to record a goal in each of the team's first four games of a season (Rick Nash - 2014-15). He has tallied a goal in five of 10 games this season, and he is tied for fourth in the NHL in games with a goal in 2017-18. In addition, Zibanejad is tied for second in the NHL in power play goals (four) and is tied for sixth in the NHL in goals (six) and power play points (five) this season.
 
CENTER OF ATTENTION
David Desharnais posted a four-game point streak from Oct. 14 vs. New Jersey to Oct. 21 vs. Nashville (two goals, three assists), and he has recorded a goal in two of the last four games. He ranks third in the NHL (min. 50 faceoffs taken) in faceoff win percentage this season (62.4%; 58-for-93).
 
ON THE MARC
Marc Staal is expected to skate in his 700th career NHL game, as well as his 700th career game as a Ranger, in tonight's contest. In the Rangers' last game against San Jose, Staal passed Mark Messier and Steve Vickers for sole possession of 12th place on the franchise's all-time games played list. The only Rangers' first round draft pick who has played in more career games with the Blueshirts than Staal has is Brian Leetch (1,129). *Note: The NHL Amateur/Entry Draft began in 1963
 
HEY HEY HAYES
Kevin Hayes tallied two points (one goal, one assist), including the game-winning goal, on Oct. 21 vs. Nashville. He has recorded a goal/point in two of the last three games (two goals, one assist, plus-four rating) and in three of the last six games.
 
SPECIAL TEAMS
 
Power Play:

  • The Rangers were 0-for-6 (11:35) on Oct. 23 vs. San Jose.
  • The Blueshirts rank 12th in the NHL in power play efficiency this season (19.5%; 8-for-41).
  • The Rangers have tallied a power play goal in five of 10 games this season.

Penalty Kill:

  • The Rangers were 1-for-1 (2:00) on Oct. 23 vs. San Jose.
  • The Blueshirts have not allowed a power play goal against in each of the last two games (6-for-6). 

UPCOMING MILESTONES

  • Rick Nash - 1 game away from 1,000 in his NHL career
  • Marc Staal - 1 game away from 700 in his NHL career
  • Ondrej Pavelec - 2 saves away from 10,000 in his NHL career
  • Brady Skjei - 3 games away from 100 in his NHL career
  • Chris Kreider - 4 assists away from 100 in his NHL career
  • Mika Zibanejad - 5 points away from 200 in his NHL career
  • Nick Holden - 5 points away from 100 in his NHL career
  • Mats Zuccarello - 7 games away from 400 in his NHL career 

INJURIES (5 Man-Games Lost to Injury)
None
 
RECENT TRANSACTIONS

  • Oct. 25 - Assigned Adam Cracknell to Hartford (AHL)
  • Oct. 24 - Assigned Tony DeAngelo to Hartford (AHL); recalled Boo Nieves from Hartford (AHL)
  • Oct. 21 - Acquired Ryan Sproul from Detroit in exchange for Matt Puempel 

THIS DAY IN RANGERS HISTORY

  • Oct. 25, 1984 - The Rangers earned their most decisive road win in franchise history, defeating the New Jersey Devils by nine goals (11-2).
  • Oct. 26, 1977 - Steve Vickers registered four goals as the Rangers defeated the St. Louis Blues, 6-2, at MSG.
  • Oct. 26, 1980 - Anders Hedberg registered six points (four goals, two assists), including the game-tying goal at 18:46 of the third period and the game-winning goal at 19:19 of the third period, as the Rangers defeated the Detroit Red Wings, 7-6, at MSG.
  • Oct. 26, 1992 - Mike Gartner tallied two goals, including the 545th goal of his NHL career, to pass Maurice "Rocket" Richard for ninth place on the NHL's all-time goals list. The Rangers defeated the Philadelphia Flyers, 8-4, at MSG to earn their 10th consecutive home win against the Flyers.
  • Oct. 26, 1997 - Wayne Gretzky registered his 1,851st career NHL assist, giving him more assists than any other player in NHL history had points (at the time - Gordie Howe ranked second in NHL history with 1,850 career points when Gretzky tallied his 1,851st career assist). Gretzky retired with 1,963 career NHL assists, and Jaromir Jagr, who currently ranks second on the NHL's all-time points list, has recorded 1,916 points in his NHL career.
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