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Pregame Notes: Rangers at Lightning 12.10.18

by New York Rangers @NYRangers / NYRangers.com

NEW YORK RANGERS at TAMPA BAY LIGHTNING

Monday, Dec. 10, 2018, 7:30 p.m. ET
Amalie Arena - Tampa, FL
TV: MSG Network, Radio: ESPN 98.7 FM

Rangers: 14-12-3 (31 pts)
Lightning: 23-7-1 (47 pts)

THE MATCHUP

The Rangers play their 30th game of the 2018-19 season tonight, Dec. 10, against the Tampa Bay Lightning at Amalie Arena (7:30 p.m. ET - TV: MSG Network, Radio: ESPN 98.7 FM). The Blueshirts have earned at least one point in 13 of the last 18 games (11-5-2 record), in 16 of the last 24 games (13-8-3 record), and in 17 of the last 26 games (14-9-3 record).

RANGERS VS. LIGHTNING

  • All-Time: 48-38-5-7 (26-18-2-4 at home; 22-20-3-3 on the road)
  • 2018-19: Tonight's game is the first of three meetings between the Rangers and Lightning, and the only meeting between the two teams at Tampa Bay. Following tonight's game, the Rangers and Lightning will face each other on the following dates: Feb. 2 (at MSG), Feb. 27 (at MSG). The Blueshirts' game against Tampa Bay on Feb. 2, 2019 at MSG will be the 100th all-time regular season meeting between the two teams.
  • 2017-18: The Rangers posted a 1-2-0 record (0-1-0 at home; 1-1-0 on the road). Two of the three contests were decided by two or fewer goals. Kevin Hayes tied for the team lead with three points (one goal, two assists) in the season series, while Chris Kreider led the Rangers with two goals in the three contests.
  • The Rangers have won five of their last eight games against Tampa Bay, dating back to Dec. 30, 2015 (5-3-0 record over the span).
  • Eight of the last 14 meetings between the Rangers and Lightning have been decided by one goal (dating back to Dec. 29, 2013).
  • Brian Leetch is the Rangers' all-time leader in games played (49), assists (33), and points (43) against the Lightning. Adam Graves is the Rangers' all-time leader in goals against Tampa Bay (14). Mark Messier ranks second in career goals (12), assists (22), and points (34) by a Ranger against the Lightning.
  • Henrik Lundqvist is the Blueshirts' all-time leader in appearances (40) and wins (20) against Tampa Bay.
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Preview: Rangers Clash With Lightning in Road Trip Finale

by Michael Obernauer / NYRangers.com

RANGERS at LIGHTNING, 7:30 p.m.
MSG, 98.7 FM

TAMPA - RangersTown turned out by the thousands on Saturday night in Sunrise, none happier or more proud than the players' dads who filled a suite to watch their sons open up a road trip with a victory. So the Blueshirts know what kind of traveling support they'll have when they face one of their stiffest tests yet this season.

The Rangers returned from a five-day layoff with a shootout victory over the Panthers on Saturday night, and on Monday will look to complete a perfect Dads' Trip 2018. They'll have to raise their level to do so, because Monday's opponent is the 23-7-1 Tampa Bay Lightning, who lead the NHL with 47 points and have won six straight games coming in, the latest a 7-1 dismantling on Saturday night of the then-Western Conference co-leading Colorado Avalanche.

"It will be a challenge, that's for sure," Lundqvist said on Sunday after the Rangers practiced with their dads in the stands at Amalie Arena. "They have a really strong team, probably the best team in the League I think.

"They have extremely good defensemen; their forwards, they can all shoot the puck, they move the puck really well side-to-side. So you can't be locked in on one or two guys, you have to be aware of all five guys out there. Their record speaks for itself. We're going to have to play our best game tomorrow to get two points."

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Preview: Rangers Look to Sweep Season Series Against Panthers

by Michael Obernauer / NYRangers.com

RANGERS at PANTHERS, 7 p.m.
MSG2, 1050 AM

Given the full week of practice with games waiting at the weekend, the Rangers' routine was already beginning to have just a little bit of that college feel. It was that way even before Friday, when all the dads arrived.

"I know I've been counting down the days," said Brett Howden, as his father, Sheldon Howden, looked on. "It's going to be really special."

The Rangers' final practice of what amounted to a midseason mini-camp in Westchester also marked the launching point of a special weekend for the team: Dads' Trip 2018. So there was Howden, the 20-year-old rookie who has played in all but one of the Rangers' 28 games this season, sitting at his stall talking in an on-camera interview about his dad, while Sheldon stood a few feet off to the side, filming the camera filming his son.

"It's something special. Growing up, going through everything with him sacrificing all his time, and pretty much putting everything aside to let us kids play hockey, he was always there for us," Howden said of his father. "It's a nice little way to kind of repay him. It's not even close to doing that, but it's a nice little gesture.

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Pregame Notes: Rangers at Panthers 12.08.18

by New York Rangers @NYRangers / NYRangers.com

NEW YORK RANGERS at FLORIDA PANTHERS
Saturday, Dec. 8, 2018, 7:00 p.m. ET
BB&T Center - Sunrise, FL

Rangers: 13-12-3 (29 pts)
Panthers: 11-11-5 (27 pts)

THE MATCHUP

The Rangers play their 29th game of the 2018-19 season Saturday, Dec. 8, against the Florida Panthers at BB&T Center (7:00 p.m. ET - TV: MSG 2, Radio: ESPN 1050 AM). The Blueshirts have earned at least one point in 12 of the last 17 games (10-5-2 record), in 15 of the last 23 games (12-8-3 record), and in 16 of the last 25 games (13-9-3 record).

RANGERS VS. PANTHERS

  • All-Time: 54-30-6-7 (28-15-4-2 at home; 26-15-2-5 on the road)
  • 2018-19: Saturday's game is the third of three meetings between the Rangers and Panthers, and the only meeting between the two teams at Florida. The Rangers have posted a 2-0-0 record (2-0-0 at home; 0-0-0 on the road) and won the last meeting between the two teams, 4-2, on Nov. 17 at MSG. Mika Zibanejad leads all skaters with five points (two goals, three assists) in the season series, and tied a single-game career-high with four points (two goals, two assists) on Oct. 23 at MSG. Chris Kreider has registered four points (one goal, three assists) and a plus-four rating in two games, while Neal Pionk has notched three assists in the two contests. Rangers goaltenders have posted a .949 SV% (75 saves on 79 shots) in the two games.
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Preview: Rangers Honor Hadfield Before Matchup With Jets

by Michael Obernauer / NYRangers.com

JETS at RANGERS
MSG, 970 AM

Vic Hadfield Night presented by Budweiser
Legendary Fan Fest: 1:30-3:30 p.m. (33rd St. btw 7th & 8th Ave.)
Doors open 3:30 p.m.
Banner-raising ceremony begins 4:30 p.m.

LEARN MORE: Get all the event details and secure your seats for Hadfield Night

The legends are in the house.

The Rangers return home on Sunday for a special evening at Madison Square Garden, a celebration of Blueshirts history that culminates in Vic Hadfield's No. 11 taking its place beneath that famous ceiling at the Seventh Avenue end.

"It's going to be exciting for me. When he was in his heyday was when I really started following hockey," said David Quinn, who grew up in Rhode Island rooting for the Bruins. "The New York-Boston rivalry runs deep in all sports. I was incredibly impressed with him at a young age, he had an incredible career.

"It's an honor that is greatly deserved, and some might think long overdue."

Quinn plans to have his players take in at least part of the pregame ceremony, and then of course, they have business to attend to. The Blueshirts will be looking to bounce back from an 0-2 Canada trip, and will do so against the Winnipeg Jets at the rink where the Rangers have been at their best so far this season.

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Preview: Rangers Face Canadiens in Road Trip Finale

by Michael Obernauer / NYRangers.com

RANGERS at CANADIENS, 7 p.m.
MSG2, 1050 AM

MONTREAL - Alexandar Georgiev's career is all before him, and he is bound to make more memories in many more hockey rinks down the road. But the Bell Centre will always be a special place for him.

It's where the 22-year-old goaltender made his National Hockey League debut only nine months ago, on Feb. 22, 2018. And in his first trip back, it's where the Georgiev will get the call in nets for the Rangers on Saturday night as the Blueshirts close out their two-game road trip against the Montreal Canadiens.

"That brings back good memories," Georgiev said after the Rangers practiced there on Friday. "It's as good of a building as we can find in Canada."

His memories of Bell Centre aren't just that he got in a game, either: He played very well in his first NHL game, to the tune of 38 saves - the most any Ranger has ever made in his NHL debut - even though he wound up the hard-luck loser in a 3-1 loss that included a Montreal empty-net goal.

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Pregame Notes: Rangers at Canadiens 12.01.18

by New York Rangers @NYRangers / NYRangers.com

NEW YORK RANGERS at MONTREAL CANADIENS

Saturday, Dec. 1, 2018, 7:00 p.m. ET
Bell Centre - Montreal, QC

Rangers: 13-11-2 (28 pts)
Canadiens: 11-9-5 (27 pts)

THE MATCHUP

The Rangers play their 27th game of the 2018-19 season and begin a back-to-back set Saturday, Dec. 1, against the Montreal Canadiens in an Original Six matchup at Bell Centre (7:00 p.m. ET - TV: MSG 2, Radio: ESPN 1050 AM). The Blueshirts have earned at least one point in 11 of the last 15 games (10-4-1 record); the Rangers rank third in the NHL in points (21) and are tied for third in wins (10) since Oct. 30. New York has earned at least one point in 14 of the last 21 games (12-7-2 record) and in 15 of the last 23 games (13-8-2 record).

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Pregame Notes: Rangers at Senators 11.29.18

by New York Rangers @NYRangers / NYRangers.com

NEW YORK RANGERS at OTTAWA SENATORS

Thursday, Nov. 29, 2018, 7:30 p.m. ET
Canadian Tire Centre - Ottawa, ON

Rangers: 13-10-2 (28 pts)
Senators: 10-12-3 (23 pts)

THE MATCHUP

The Rangers play their 26th game of the 2018-19 season and conclude a home-and-home set tonight, Nov. 29, against the Ottawa Senators at Canadian Tire Centre (7:30 p.m. ET - TV: MSG Network, Radio: ESPN 98.7 FM). The Blueshirts have earned at least one point in 11 of the last 14 games (10-3-1 record); the Rangers rank second in the NHL in points (21) and are tied for second in wins (10) since Oct. 30. New York has earned at least one point in 14 of the last 20 games (12-6-2 record) and in 15 of the last 22 games (13-7-2 record).

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Preview: Rangers Hit the Road for Matchup With Senators

by Michael Obernauer / NYRangers.com

RANGERS at SENATORS, 7:30 p.m.
MSG, 98.7 FM

The Rangers will face a repeat opponent on Thursday night when they face the Ottawa Senators for the second time in four days. The Rangers' message in between games is that they will not be satisfied with a repeat performance.

"The coaches really drilled home that what we did on Monday is not going to be good enough on Thursday," Kevin Shattenkirk said after the Rangers practiced in Westchester on Wednesday. "That's one hundred percent right. I don't think we're going to see the same Ottawa team, and I don't think we're going to be let off the hook as much as we were on Monday night."

The Rangers play four of their next five games away from home, beginning with a rematch against the Senators on Thursday night at Canadian Tire Centre. Monday's 4-2 Garden win over the Sens was the Rangers' 10th win in their last 14 games (10-3-1); they have points in four of their last six road games (3-2-1).

Video: Quinn gives injury updates after practice

"We know what we're in for tomorrow night: You play a team back-to-back, you just beat them, a little more urgency on their end," David Quinn said on Wednesday. "(The Senators) had a big win yesterday so they're feeling good about themselves. We certainly understand that we're facing an opponent that's feeling good and looking for a little bit of redemption."

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Preview: Rangers Host Senators on Hockey Fights Cancer Night

by Michael Obernauer / NYRangers.com

SENATORS at RANGERS, 7PM
MSG, 98.7 FM

GET TICKETS

The Rangers will be playing their fourth game in six days on Monday night, and for a guy like Ryan Strome, who has been a Ranger for less than two weeks, that raises the challenge of having plenty of games but not a lot of practice time with his new teammates.

"I think that's probably better," Strome said following the Rangers' morning skate on Monday. "Just get out there and play."

The Rangers are playing for a rebound from their first back-to-back losses in the month of November when they host a struggling Ottawa team at Madison Square Garden, kicking off a home-and-home set with the Senators that concludes on Thursday in the Canadian capital. Big-picture, the Rangers still have sparkling numbers over the past several weeks, a 9-3-1 record since Oct. 30 and wins in seven of their last eight games at the Garden. But the goal tonight is to put a stop to their brief skid before packing their bags for a pair of games in Canada.

"Any time you lose two in a row, three in a row, whatever it is, you've got to have a little urgency to stop it quick," said Tony DeAngelo, who will return to the Rangers' blue line in front of Henrik Lundqvist, back in goal after getting two of the last three games off. "We've just got to keep playing the same way, get back to our structure and playing well. We're a pretty confident group, I think if we do that we'll be fine."

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