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Rangers vs. Sharks 10.17.16: Pregame Notes

by New York Rangers @NYRangers / NYRangers.com

NEW YORK RANGERS vs. SAN JOSE SHARKS
Monday, Oct. 17, 2016, 7:00 p.m. ET
Madison Square Garden - New York, NY 

Rangers: 1-1-0 (2 pts)
Sharks: 2-0-0 (4 pts) 

TONIGHT'S GAME

The Rangers play their third game of the 2016-17 season tomorrow, Oct. 17, against the San Jose Sharks at Madison Square Garden (7:00 p.m. ET - TV: MSG Network; Radio: WOR 710 AM). The Blueshirts enter the contest with a 1-1-0 record this season. Beginning with tomorrow's game, the Rangers play nine of their next 12 games at MSG.

RANGERS VS. SHARKS

  • All-Time: 23-9-3-0 (11-4-1-0 at home; 12-5-2-0 on the road)
  • 2016-17: Tonight's game is the first of two meetings between the Rangers and Sharks this season, and the only meeting between the two teams at MSG. Following tomorrow's contest, the Rangers and Sharks will play against each other on the following date: Mar. 28 (at San Jose).
  • 2015-16: The Rangers posted a 1-1-0 record (1-0-0 at home; 0-1-0 on the road). Marc Staal led the Rangers with three points and tied for first on the team with two assists in the season series. Antti Raanta stopped all 27 shots he faced in two appearances, and he posted a shutout while making his Rangers debut on Oct. 19, 2015.
  • The Rangers have won five of their last seven games against San Jose at MSG, dating back to Dec. 16, 2002 (5-2-0-0 record over the span). New York has allowed 12 goals in those seven contests and has allowed one goal or fewer in five of the seven games.
  • The Blueshirts posted a shutout in each of their last two home games against San Jose (4-0 on Oct. 19, 2015; 4-0 on Oct. 19, 2014).
  • New York has earned at least one point in 11 of its last 16 games against San Jose, dating back to Dec. 28, 2001 (10-5-1-0 record over the span).

RANGERS-SHARKS CONNECTIONS

  • Micheal Haley played part of one season with the Rangers (2012-13).
  • Oscar Lindberg and Melker Karlsson were teammates with Skelleftea in Sweden for six seasons (2007-08 - 2012-13) and helped the team win the SHL Championship in 2012-13.
  • Adam Clendening and Matt Nieto were teammates at Boston University for two seasons (2010-11 - 2011-12).
  • Michael Grabner and Micheal Haley were teammates with the Islanders for parts of two seasons (2010-11 - 2011-12).
  • Rick Nash and Joe Thornton were teammates with Team Canada at the 2006 Winter Olympics and the 2010 Winter Olympics, and they helped Team Canada win a gold medal at the 2010 Winter Olympics in Vancouver, British Columbia. In addition, Nash and Thornton were teammates with HC Davos of National League A (NLA) in Switzerland in 2004-05 and 2012-13.

INDIVIDUAL CAREER STATISTICS VS. SHARKS

  • Henrik Lundqvist - 9 GP, 4-4-0, 2.34 GAA, .934 SV%, 1 SO - Lundqvist has allowed one goal or fewer in three of his last four starts/appearances against the Sharks, posting a 1.57 GAA, a .957 SV%, and 1 SO in those contests.
  • Antti Raanta - 3 GP, 1-1-0, 0.46 GAA, .978 SV%, 1 SO - Raanta has stopped 45 of 46 shots he has faced in his career against San Jose.
  • Rick Nash - 39 GP, 19-8-27 - Nash has recorded 17 points (13 goals, four assists) in his last 21 games against the Sharks.
  • Brandon Pirri - 4 GP, 3-2-5 - Pirri has tallied a goal/point in three of his four career games against San Jose and has posted two multi-point games against the Sharks.
  • Mika Zibanejad - 5 GP, 2-2-4 - Zibanejad has notched a point in three of five career contests against the Sharks.

WELCOME TO NEW YORK

At least one Ranger who wasn't on the roster in 2015-16 has tallied a point on six of the team's first seven goals in 2016-17. Players who made their debut with the Rangers this season have recorded 10 points through two games in 2016-17 (Zibanejad - four; Holden - two; Pirri - two; Buchnevich - one; Grabner - one).

 

SHUTTING THE DOOR

The Rangers did not allow a shot on goal in the third period on Oct. 15 at St. Louis and outshot the Blues, 15-0, in the period. According to the Elias Sports Bureau, the last time the Rangers did not allow a shot on goal in one period was the third period on Mar. 6, 2006 against Carolina.

 

BROADWAY DEBUT

Seven players made their Rangers debut on Oct. 13 against the Islanders (Clendening, Holden, Vesey, Grabner, Pirri, Buchnevich, and Zibanejad), while Vesey and Buchnevich also made their NHL debut. Five of the seven players who made their debut with the Rangers on Oct. 13 recorded at least one point (Buchnevich, Grabner, Holden, Pirri, and Zibanejad).

 

TRUE BLUE

Of the 24 players on the Rangers roster (including Oscar Lindberg, who is on injured reserve), 15 have made their NHL debut with the Rangers and have only played with the Blueshirts in their NHL career (Buchnevich, Fast, Girardi, Hayes, Kreider, Lindberg, Lundqvist, McDonagh, McIlrath, Miller, Skjei, Staal, Stepan, Vesey, and Zuccarello).

 

WINNING WAYS

New York is one of three NHL teams that have earned at least 100 wins since the start of the 2014-15 season (St. Louis - 103; Washington - 102). The Rangers posted a 99-49-16 record during the 2014-15 and 2015-16 seasons. The Blueshirts' 99 wins in 2014-15 and 2015-16 were the most recorded in any two-season span in franchise history.

 

HOME COOKING

The Rangers have earned at least one point in 62 of their last 81 regular season home games, dating back to Oct. 16, 2014 (53-19-9 record over the span). In addition, the Blueshirts have posted a 28-10-4 record in 42 regular season games at MSG since the start of the 2015-16 season and have averaged 3.21 goals per game at home over the span.

 

SMOOTH SAILING ON THE PACIFIC

The Rangers posted a 10-3-1 record against the Western Conference at home in 2015-16, including a 6-0-1 record at home against Pacific Division opponents.

 

HIGH FIVE

Since the start of the 2014-15 season, the Rangers lead the NHL in shooting percentage (8.9) and are tied for first in save percentage (.932) at 5-on-5 play. The Blueshirts led the NHL in both categories in 2015-16 (9.0 shooting percentage and .934 save percentage).

 

SHOOTING GALLERY

New York has recorded at least 35 shots on goal in each of its first two games of the 2016-17 season. The Rangers have outshot their opponents, 74-46, through the first two games this season (37.0 shots on goal per game; 23.0 shots on goal against per game).

 

AV SQUAD

Alain Vigneault leads all NHL head coaches in regular season wins since the start of the 2006-07 season (458). Vigneault leads all Rangers head coaches (min. 100 regular season games coached) in points percentage in franchise history (.629).

 

KING HENRIK

Henrik Lundqvist is one of three goaltenders in NHL history who have earned at least 30 wins in 10 different seasons (along with Martin Brodeur and Patrick Roy). He is the Rangers' all-time leader in several categories, including wins (375), appearances (687), shutouts (59), and save percentage (.920).

 

RAISE THE ANTTI

Among NHL goaltenders who have appeared in at least 25 games since the start of the 2014-15 season, Antti Raanta ranks second in GAA (2.10) and ranks fourth in SV% (.926). Raanta has posted a 19-4-4 record, along with a 1.80 GAA, a .934 SV%, and 4 SO in 31 career NHL appearances at home.

 

UP FOR GRABS

Michael Grabner enters tomorrow's contest with 399 career NHL games played. Grabner is tied for fourth in the NHL in shorthanded goals since the start of the 2010-11 season (12).

 

MIKA MAGIC

Mika Zibanejad has posted a multi-point game in each of the first two games this season (one goal, three assists). Last season, Zibanejad was one of 13 NHL players who recorded at least 20 goals, 35 takeaways, and a 50.0 faceoff win percentage (min. 1,000 faceoffs taken), and of the 13 players, he was only one of two who were 22 years old or younger. Zibanejad was also one of 11 NHL centers who logged at least 1,000 even strength minutes of ice time, 200 power play minutes of ice time, and 100 shorthanded minutes of ice time last season. Zibanejad's goals, assists, and points totals have increased in every season throughout his NHL career.

 

KREID-ING HIGH

Chris Kreider recorded one goal, one assist, and seven shots on goal in each of the first two games of the 2016-17 season. Kreider was the only Ranger who registered at least 20 goals in both 2014-15 and 2015-16.

 

CAPTAIN MAC

Ryan McDonagh logged 30:08 of ice time on Oct. 15 at St. Louis, marking the second time in his NHL career that he logged at least 30:00 of ice time in a regular season game which ended in regulation (Jan. 29, 2013 vs. Philadelphia - 30:09). 

 

IM-PIRRI-AL

Brandon Pirri recorded two points (one goal, one assist), including his first goal, assist, and point as a Ranger, while making his debut with the team on Oct. 13 against the Islanders. Among skaters who have played at least 50 games since the start of the 2013-14 season, Pirri ranks 12th in the NHL in goals per 60 minutes of ice time (1.32).

 

SPECIAL TEAMS

Since the start of the 2014-15 season, the Rangers have posted a 33-2-3 record in games which they have outscored their opponent on special teams.

 

Power Play:

  • The Rangers were 0-for-2 (4:00) on Oct. 15 at St. Louis.

Penalty Kill:

  • The Rangers were 4-for-5 (8:06) and allowed four shots on goal on Oct. 15 at St. Louis.

UPCOMING MILESTONES

  • Michael Grabner - 1 game away from 400 in his NHL career
  • J.T. Miller - 2 games away from 200 in his NHL career/as a Ranger
  • Derek Stepan - 6 assists away from 200 in his NHL career/as a Ranger
  • Rick Nash - 7 goals away from 400 in his NHL career

INJURIES (4 Man-Games Lost to Injury)

  • Oscar Lindberg (hip surgery) - placed on IR
  • Kevin Klein - day-to-day
  • Dan Girardi (hip) 

RECENT TRANSACTIONS

  • Oct. 16 - Signed Justin Fontaine to a two-way contract; Assigned Justin Fontaine to Hartford (AHL) 

THIS DAY IN RANGERS HISTORY

  •  Oct. 16, 1996 - Alexei Kovalev registered a hat trick as the Rangers defeated the Pittsburgh Penguins, 8-1.
  • Oct. 17, 2005 - Henrik Lundqvist earned his first career NHL shutout as the Rangers defeated the Florida Panthers, 4-0, at MSG.
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