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Rangers Look For Fourth Straight Win in Carolina

Buchnevich to Return; Lundqvist to Get the Start

by Matt Calamia @MattCalamia / NYRangers.com

The Rangers head into Carolina tonight and carry a three-game winning streak after another come-from-behind win Wednesday night against the Boston Bruins.

The Rangers (5-2-0, 10 pts) erased a 2-0 first period deficit 48 hours ago against Boston en route to a 5-2 win behind two goals from Brandon Pirri. The free agent signing scored the game-winning goal and added some insurance in the third to bring his goal total to four on the young season. 

Rick Nash, Kevin Hayes and Jimmy Vesey also scored while Henrik Lundqvist finished with 27 saves for his fourth win of the season.

The Rangers could not escape the game healthy, though, as forward Josh Jooris injured his shoulder and is expected to miss three-to-four weeks following an MRI on Thursday morning.

With that said, Pavel Buchnevich will play after missing five games with back spasms. After joining practice earlier in the week and taking part in a full contact practice Thursday, the winger is good to go. He has one assist in two games thus far this season.

More positive news on the injury front came in the form of Chris Kreider skating, though he will not play Friday and is doubtful for Sunday's game against Tampa Bay.

The Rangers also placed defenseman Dylan McIlrath on waivers.

New York enters Friday night's game against Carolina winners of 19 of the last 21 matchups between the two clubs dating back to Feb. 22, 2011, including nine of the past 10 dating back to April 8, 2014. 

Lundqvist is expected to get the start for the Rangers and - like the Rangers as a whole - has had immense success against the Hurricanes, going 23-10-1 with two shutouts over his career, and is 15-3 with a 1.80 GAA dating back to Jan. 5, 2011.

The success continues throughout the lineup, as Mats Zuccarello has 18 points in 19 games against the Hurricanes, while Derek Stepan has 20 in 22 contests.

Friday marks Carolina's (1-3-2, 4 pts) first game at PNC Arena after opening the season with six road games. They're coming off back-to-back losses against the Flyers and Red Wings to wrap up the road trip.

Youngster Victor Rask is leading the way offensively with four goals and three assists for seven points in six games, followed by ex-Ranger Lee Stempniak with four goals of his own and six points through six games. Former Calder Trophy winner Jeff Skinner is off to a strong start with two goals and six points in five games, as is blueliner Justin Faulk with five points in six contests. Skinner, though, is day-to-day with a middle body injury, according to Carolina's web site.

The goaltending duo of Eddie Lack and Cam Ward has struggled as the team's 1a, 1b combo thus far, though Lack has the team's lone win. He's 1-1-1 with a 4.00 GAA and a .857 save percentage in three starts. Ward, the former Conn Smythe winner, is 0-2-1 with a 4.02 goals against average and a .848 save percentage.

Rangers at Hurricanes

7:30 pm at PNC Arena

Live coverage begins on MSG Network at 7 pm

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