The Rangers are on the road to take on the New Jersey Devils tonight at MSG West the Prudential Center in Newark, NJ. The puck drops at 7 pm and can be seen nationally on Versus and TSN.
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So the last time we saw our Rangers, they were shitting the bed and rolling around in it in Dallas, losing 10-2 to the Stars. It was the first time the Rangers have given up 10 goals since April 9th, 1993 against Pittsburgh, and the Stars haven’t scored 10 goals in one game the entire time they have been in Dallas. Terrific!
To be entirely honest, I have quite possibly the lowest expectations for this team going into this game that I’ve had since before the lockout. The die-hard fan in me wants to have faith and really believe they can pull it out and grind out a win, but good lord in heaven have they looked terrible the entire month of February. So I’m not sure, let’s just hope it’s not a complete embarrassment. We all know how I feel about the Devils.
I think we can say that we must never, ever vote Henrik into the All-Star Game. Ever. Clearly the dude needs a vacation at the mid-way point of the season, and this year he didn’t get it and it shows. Hopefully the couple days off he got with the flu made up for it and he’ll be back in Kingly form tonight. Hopefully. Plus I think my t-shirt is cursed. I ordered it and Hank played like hell in the ASG. Now every time I sleep in it/wear it to the gym they lose. And lose horribly. Balls. I like that shirt, too.
Anyway, tonight’s really a toss up. The Rangers are coming off of 4 straight losses, the Devils are coming off of two straight after being on a hot streak for a long time. The Rangers could rebound with an awesome game and remind us why we all endure the misery of being a Ranger fan, because it will eventually pay off with glorious victory, or they will once again get embarrassed in spectacular fashion, and we can all storm MSG with torches and pitchforks. Sound fun? I think so.
In other(ish) news: Tonight is the first time the Rangers will be facing Brendan Shanahan, a former Ranger
who Glen Sather let twist in the wind for the entire summer, preseason, and the better part of this season. I loved Shanny, always did. I was sad to see him go. If the Rangers lose tonight, I hope it’s Shanny who scores the game-winner. Yeah, I said it.
UPDATE: Courtesy of Steve Zipay, tonight’s lines:
Henrik Lundqvist will be back in net after missing the last game against Dallas with the flu.
Devils record: 33-17-3 – 8-2-0 in their last 10 - 15-10-1 at home
Rangers record: 29-19-5 – 5-4-1 in their last 10 - 13-11-2 on the road
Average goals scored in a game:
Average goals allowed in a game: