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Rangers Head North to Battle the Wild

New York is 10-2 in their last 12 road games

by Matt Calamia @MattCalamia /

The Rangers return to action Saturday to complete a back-to-back set against the Wild in Minnesota.

New York is coming off a disappointing 4-3 shootout loss Friday night to the Florida Panthers that saw the Rangers unable to build off an early two-goal lead. Mats Zuccarello scored twice and J.T. Miller added his 20th of the season in defeat.

Antti Raanta made 34 saves in the loss Friday, but it is unknown whether he'll be in net for the Rangers Saturday against the Wild. Coach Alain Vigneault said while he had made up his mind on who his goaltender would be, he did not reveal it to the media following Friday's game.

The Rangers have had great success this season on the road, bringing an NHL-best 25 road victories into Saturday's game against the Wild. New York is 6-1 in their last seven road games and 10-2 in their last 12 away from Madison Square Garden.

The Wild enter tonight's game in the middle of a dip. They're 4-6 in their last 10, with one win in their last six games. They completed a five-game road trip Thursday with a loss in Carolina.

That slump has cost the Wild first place in the Central Division, as they trail the Chicago Black Hawks by three points for the top spot.

Center Mikael Granlund is having a career year for the Wild this season, as the 25-year-old set career-highs with 24 goals and 41 assists for 65 points, all of which lead Minnesota. Former Ranger Eric Staal is having a resurgent season with 23 goals and 53 points in 69 games, while captain Mikko Koivu has 52 points in 68 games.

Goaltender Devan Dubnyk is turning in another Vezina-worthy campaign in the State of Hockey. He's 36-16-3 with a 2.11 GAA and a .930 SV% to go along with five shutouts. But like the team, Dubnyk has struggled as of late with just one win in his last six games.

Backup Darcy Kuemper is 7-4-3 on the year.

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