Coyotes-Rangers tonight


I’m headed to MSG.

Here are tonight’s pre-game notes, from the Rangers:

Thursday, Dec. 16, 7:00 p.m.
Madison Square Garden • New York, NY
Rangers: 19-13-1 (39 pts)
Coyotes: 14-9-6 (34 pts)
* All information through NHL games on Dec. 15

The Rangers will conclude their ninth back-to-back set  against the Phoenix Coyotes at Madison Square Garden (7:00 p.m.). The Blueshirts currently rank third in the Atlantic Division standings, and fifth in the Eastern Conference, with a record of 19-13-1 (39 pts). The Rangers enter the contest having defeated the Pittsburgh Penguins, 4-1, last night at CONSOL Energy Center to record their first regulation win in Pittsburgh since Jan. 19, 2006 (4-2). New York is now 12-6-0 in their last 18 games, and have won five of their last six on the road. The Coyotes enter the contest with a 14-9-6 (34 pts) record to rank 11th in the Western Conference, and have lost five of their last eight games (3-4-1). Following the contest, the Rangers will return to action when they face-off against the Philadelphia Flyers on Saturday, Dec. 18, at Wells Fargo Center (1:00 p.m.).

* TV: MSG Network
6:30 p.m. – Rangers Pre-Game Show with Al Trautwig and Mike Keenan
7:00 p.m. – Rangers vs. Coyotes
Broadcasters: Sam Rosen (Play-By-Play), Joe Micheletti (Analyst), Al Trautwig, John Giannone and Mike Keenan (In-Game Reporters)
* Radio: 1050 ESPN Radio and
6:30 p.m. – Rangers Pre-Game with Don LaGreca
7:00 p.m. – Rangers vs. Coyotes
Broadcasters: Kenny Albert (Play-By-Play), Dave Maloney (Analyst)

* All-Time: The Rangers are 35-24-6-0 all-time against the Coyotes: 20-10-2-0 at home and 15-14-4-0 on the road
* 2010-11: Tonight’s contest marks the first and only meeting between the Rangers and Coyotes this season
* Last Season: New York was 1-1-0 against the Phoenix in 2009-10, including a 1-0-0 mark at Madison Square Garden. The Rangers out-scored the Coyotes in the third period, 3-0, in the season series.
* The Blueshirts rank 24th in the NHL at home with a record of 7-8-1 (15 pts) in 16 games; the Coyotes have posted a record of 8-5-2 (18 pts) on the road to rank ninth in the league
* The Rangers have not faced a Pacific Division opponent yet this season; the Coyotes are 0-1-1 vs. the Atlantic Division
* Henrik Lundqvist has posted a record of 3-0-0 with a 2.00 goals against average in three career regular season games against the Coyotes; Martin Biron is 3-4-0-1 with a 2.38 goals against average and one shutout in nine career regular season contests vs. Phoenix
* Alex Frolov has tallied a team-high, 21 goals, 14 assists and 35 points in 43 career regular season contests vs. the Coyotes; Marian Gaborik has registered 18 goals and 26 points in 26 career regular season games vs. Phoenix, including a team-high, three goals and four points in two games last season
* New York lists one former Coyote on their roster: Brandon Prust (2009-10)
* Phoenix lists three former Rangers on their roster: Lauri Korpikoski (2008-09); Derek Morris (2008-09); Jason LaBarbera (2000-01 – 2003-04)

* Power Play: The Rangers notched one goal in three power play opportunities (4:20) last night at Pittsburgh, and have now registered a goal on the man advantage in six of the last seven games (6-26, 23.1% over the span). New York ranks 14th in the NHL with a 17.4% (21-121) success rate, and ranks 25th at home with a 14.3% (9-63) success rate. The Rangers notched one goal in one, five-on-three chance (0:30) on Nov. 24 at Tampa Bay, and are now 1-5 on five-on-three attempts (5:01). New York is 0-2 (2:23) with a four-on-three advantage this season. Shorthanded goals allowed (2): 11/20 at MIN (Cullen); 12/5 vs. OTT (Kelly).
* Penalty Killing: The Blueshirts held the Penguins scoreless in three shorthanded situations (6:00) last night at Pittsburgh, and are now 56-63 (88.9%) over the last 21 games. New York ranks 13th in the NHL with a 82.8% (96-116) success rate, and ranks 15th in the league at home with a 84.0% (42-50) success rate. The Rangers held the Maple Leafs scoreless in one, three-on-five situation (0:31) on Oct. 30 at Toronto, and are 4-6 on three-on-fives (5:08) this season. The Blueshirts held the Penguins scoreless in one, three-on-four situation on Nov. 15 at Pittsburgh, and are now 4-6 (2:41) in those situations this season. Shorthanded goals for (7): 10/9 at BUF (Dubinsky); 11/5 at NJD (Dubinsky); 11/15 at PIT (Staal); 11/24 at TBL (Boyle); 11/26 at FLA (Prust); 12/5 vs. OTT (Prust); 12/12 vs. WSH (Staal).
* Four-on-Four: New York did not skate in a four-on-four situation last night at Pittsburgh, and are now plus-three in 24, four-on-four situations (39:08) this season. Four-on-four goals for (4): 10/18 vs. COL (Frolov); 11/11 vs. BUF (Anisimov); 11/15 at PIT (Callahan); 12/12 vs. WSH (Callahan). Four-on-four goals allowed (1): 10/15 vs. TOR (Kessel).

Tonight’s contest will conclude the Rangers’ ninth of 18 back-to-back sets this season. New York has posted a record of 8-0-0 in the second game of back-to-backs this season following a 7-0 win on Sunday vs. the Capitals, having out-scored their opponent, 27-6 in those games, and are 3-0-0 when the second game is at home. Over the last two seasons, New York is 17-2-2 in the second game of back-to-back sets, including a 7-1-1 mark at MSG over the span.

The Blueshirts have started games off strong this season, tallying the first goal of the game in 21 of their 33 games and posting a record of 15-5-1 in those contests. The Rangers own a record of 10-1-1 when leading after the first period, having out-scored their opponent, 22-15, in the opening frame.

The Rangers have had 12 different players credited with at least one game winning goal this season which leads the NHL, and are one ahead of Atlanta, Tampa Bay and Washington.

The Rangers currently rank first in the NHL with 967 hits on the season, and lead the league with an average of 29.3 hits per contest. Ryan Callahan currently ranks second in the NHL with 128 hits.

The Blueshirts currently rank second in the NHL with 542 blocked shots on the season, averaging 16.4 blocked shots per contest to rank second in the league. Dan Girardi leads the NHL with 93 blocked shots, and Ryan Callahan leads all NHL forwards with 40 blocked shots.

* The Rangers lead the league in road wins (12) and shorthanded goals (seven), rank third in road goals (53), fourth in wins (19), fifth in points (39), are tied for sixth in goals (99), and rank sixth with a plus-16 goal differential
* Henrik Lundqvist is 7-3-0 with a 1.58 goals against average, a .940 save percentage and three shutouts in his last 10 games
* Marian Gaborik has tallied 17 points (nine goals, eight assists) in his last 16 games
* Marc Staal enters the contest with a three-game scoring streak (two goals, two assists over the span), and has recorded nine points (three goals, six assists) in the last 11 games
* Brandon Dubinsky has registered seven points (two goals, five assists) in the last seven games
* Brian Boyle has registered six points (two goals, four assists) in the last six games
* Brandon Prust has tallied five points (three goals, two assists) in the last seven games
* Michal Rozsival has recorded four assists in the last four contests
* Dan Girardi has registered four assists in the last five games

Blueshirts’ prospects Chris Kreider and Ryan Bourque have been invited to USA Hockey’s evaluation camp for the 2011 World Junior Championship in Buffalo, New York. This would be the second trip to the elite tournament for both Kreider and Bourque, if selected, having both represented the gold medal-winning Team USA at the 2010 World Junior Championship.  Roman Horak has also been invited to attend the Czech Republic’s evaluation camp, while Jesper Fasth is on Team Sweden’s preliminary roster.  If selected, this would be Horak’s second appearance at the World Junior Championship, having represented his native country in last year’s tournament. Fasth is looking to make his first appearance in the elite tournament.

Based on opening day rosters, the Rangers have the ninth youngest team in the NHL with an average age of 27 years and 44 days, and the second youngest defensive corp in the league, trailing only Los Angeles with an average age of 25 years and 51 days.

* Marian Gaborik: 2 games from 600 NHL career
* Dan Girardi: 3 points from 100 NHL career
* Alex Frolov: 5 points from 400 NHL career
* Brandon Dubinsky: 9 assists from 100 NHL career
* Henrik Lundqvist: 9 wins from 200 NHL career

* Vinny Prospal (IR on Sept. 24/knee surgery on Oct. 18, 6-8 weeks) – 33
* Derek Boogaard (injured on Dec. 9) – 3
* Ryan Callahan (broken hand on Dec. 15)
Total Man-Games Lost: 98

* None

About Author


  1. Repost:

    Larry Sacharuk December 16th, 2010 at 12:56 pm
    Carp, I respect your opinion though I disagree with it, esp. your characterization of him being “distant” in Gretzky’s wake. To watch Orr behind his own net, gearing for a rush up ice, literally 200 feet from Giacomin or Villemure, was to know fear for a young Rangers fan. No other player that I ever saw, and I saw a ton of games in person between the age of 7 and 47, gave me that dread.

    Tiki, given a choice to build a team between Messier and Gretzky, I would choose Messier ——- because like Orr and Howe he did it everywhere on the ice, to say nothing of his leadership.

  2. Gift of GAB-orik on

    I’ll say it again. Nobody wears 99. Not no way, not no how.

    He basically permanently retired #99 for the entire NHL.

  3. I agree about Messier, good all around player. Did it all, score, hit, fight & who can question his leadership. But Gretzky didn’t break records, he shattered them. Can’t argue with those numbers.

  4. Gift of GAB-orik on

    Officially… he broke his hand blocking a shot. haha…. sorry i couldn’t resist.

    Perhaps it will be called an upper body injury?
    maybe he’ll be listed as day to day for 6 weeks?

  5. Larry, I certainly remember those days. I remember screaming at the TV for somebody to go get the puck away from this No. 4 guy.

    Rod Gilbert told me a story about going out for a power play. Orr got the puck behind his net and Gilbert chased him out. Orr went up the right boards, Gilbert chasing him, Orr went behind the Rangers net, then around and down the other side wall, and behind his own net again. Gilbert chased him out, and Orr basically circled the entire rink again, Gilbert still chasing him. Gilbert said he was exhausted and had to go to the bench for a change, and Orr practically had killed the entire penalty by holding onto the puck.

  6. Gift of GAB-RURY on

    I’ll always remember 99’s ridiculous excuse for a helmet. Might as well have been a plastic shopping bag.

  7. Carp’ed, repost re: Crosby and Ovie’s legacies:

    I think we’ll have to wait to see where #8 and #87 end up in the record books. I mean you can always debate who was better in their particular era, but Crosby has a while to go in his career to accumulate the points in order crack even the top 20 list (Robitaille with 1394) of all time points.

    He’s currently 5th all time in points per game, but his production won’t always be as lofty as it is now. I’ve caught flack for saying it before, but most of the great players, even those without injury issues, started to peak in their late 20’s. Now they didn’t decline sharply, you saw guys go from 110-120 point guys to sub 100 and maintain it for a number of seasons afterwards, but figure that the all time great players usually start in the NHL around 18 or 19. They’ll have 10 years of NHL experience before they’re 30. 800 or so games, and if they’re on good teams they’ll have the playoff games on top of that, playing high stress minutes night in and night out. It takes its toll after a while. I’m not suggesting that Crosby’s career goes the way of Lindros or Forsberg but any comparison to the all time greats for a player only 5 seasons into their respective career is premature.

  8. Carp for some reason I feel like that story is a little more colorful when Rod tells it lol. Great stuff though. The complete player is becoming more and more rare these days.

  9. Carp for some reason I feel like that story is a little more colorful when Rod tells it lol. Great stuff though. The complete player is becoming more and more rare these days.

  10. I’m too young for the Orr days, but I’ve seen the highlights and he was amazing. I heard when he was being scouted in juniors, one scout recalled he played 58 minutes of a game, the only 2 minutes he sat out were in the penalty box.

  11. I think Ovie is closer to being Messier than Cindy is to being Gretzky.

    And nobody should be wasting their time comparing anyone to 99. It’s a joke. It’s like comparing Kobe to MJ. If you do that, you are simply forgetting just how good those guys were.

  12. Larry –

    That’s where I disagree with you. I respect your opinion, but Id take Gretzky’s skill over Messier’s two-way play and leadership. And Messier’s two-way play and leadership over Orr.

  13. Carp, I looked for you the last game I went to against the Isles, but for some reason no one was around in the press box that I saw until the game had already started.

  14. Larry Sacharuk on

    Carp, I do remember watching Orr killing a penalty against the Leafs where he simply circled his own net at lightning speed again and again and again, and no one could touch him much less catch him. He was as good a skater — even after the first of his knee problems — as there has ever been in the NHL.

    Tiki, I know you’ve heard this before. But Messier won two Cups without Gretzky. Gretzky won zippo without Messier.

  15. Carp, I’ve met Gilbert a few times. I’m sure it took him 3 hours to tell that story.
    The guy loves to tell old Ranger stories & tells them in detail – hhahaha

  16. Larry – Yes, Ive heard that line and…. I always use that line specifically in an effort to define Messier’s greatness.

  17. It took a little time, but maybe we are starting to see what Torts is good for- getting the best out of each player and the whole team?

  18. “getting the best out of each player and the whole team?”

    100% agreed. Maximize talent. Not each player, though, but almost every player.

  19. *Alex Frolov has tallied a team-high, 21 goals, 14 assists and 35 points in 43 career regular season contests vs. the Coyotes; Marian Gaborik has registered 18 goals and 26 points in 26 career regular season games vs. Phoenix, including a team-high, three goals and four points in two games last season*

    These two guys have had their way with the yotes throughout their careers it would be nice if they kept it up tonight.

    As for bush league-ing it I sure hope not. Im sure they’re feeling good about last night but Pho is a hard working team and won’t hesitate to jump all over them if they come out and sit back.

  20. And also last night, maybe for the first time in awhile, I had a strong feeling that Hank will not let too many in, let alone softies.

  21. agreed again. Hankie just needed some time to get settled in this season, and now he’s ON FIRE!!! He’s a man on a mission! Mission Stanley Cup!

  22. I’d like him to shuffle ’em even more as long as they keep winning. Hey, think positive- they never have to adjust to new linemates.

  23. Hey, slow down here- his ties are getting better. I think he and Avery made a deal- he gives Sean more ice time, Aves chooses his ties.

  24. ilb, I did play hockey this week. I should have listened to you. We played 6 periods in a Charity game. I lasted 3 periods with really short shifts. The knee is real sore as is the rest of my body – hahaha

  25. Oh, good, Tony…I’m surprised you still have it. If you decide to play one more, make sure someone picks up your knee in the corner before they Zamboni the ice :-)

  26. I’d like to see these combos…


    I imagine they’ll give Weise a call over the weekend…Don’t think Todd White is going to cut it for 6 weeks :)

    Unless, we get in a major scoring funk, I’d rather wait on MZA and let him continue dominate up in CT. I find it silly to bring him up now, since the reasoning as to why he didn’t make the team in the first place was he “needs to learn how to play in North America”. Why change that thinking now! Stay the course and we will be rewarded when he develops into the next Marty St. Louis!

  27. Gift of GAB-RURY on

    Thanks JBytes!

    I rarely if ever pass up an opportunity to make a joke at Crybaby’s expense. I enjoy bringing the gift of laughter to fellow boneheads!

    Gifting is in my nature… and my screen name :)

  28. I like these combos:

    Szechuan Chicken – Roast Pork Fried Rice – Hot and Sauer Soup
    Beef Chow Mein – Spring Roll – Egg Drop Soup

  29. Tiki I agree with you about a feeling last night with Hank. In general I thought last night was kind of the opposite of the way we were all feeling during the home game against the Sens. I just felt like something GOOD was going to happen since it was still only 1-0. Hank was solid for sure.

  30. on EC- I have to admit I don’t mind having him around when things are good. Definitely not a 1st line center by any means but he’s good depth and he’s got a very deceiving wrister. that shot he scored on last night looked like innocent until I saw it on the replay. He rips that shot even though he doesnt seem to get much behind it and it looks like his hands are kind of high up on his stick. Maybe a bit of a lucky goal but a timely one and a clutch one for sure.

  31. I just looked up the character name Lumen. DAMN IT! Julia Stiles is in Dexter now as Dexter’s love interest??

    Ive gotta start watching that show again. I have yet to see seasons 3, 4 or 5.

  32. Haha! Yeah, the only Red Sox you see in Dexter are the socks covered in the blood of Dexter’s victims.

    Dexter married his sister/wife two years ago or something. He does have strange taste in women. This cheating scandal better not affect the show, or else I’ll have to go Dexter on all of them!

  33. alright boys- no computer at home so I wont be able to get on tonight but here’s hoping for another big night for our Blueshirts! been great chatting with youse today!

  34. 2 worst teams in the league: #2- NJ Devils:lost 40 points already. #1 NY Islanders:lost 41 points. Next closest- Edmonton and Calgary: lost 33 points each. Now I can go have some lunch.

  35. cccp – I dont have showtime, and am waiting to buy the Dexter seasons I dont have at a fair price on blu ray. I absolutely loved it when I watched it.

  36. “I feel sorry for people who feel the need to try to tear down Gretzky. Because in whatever era you put him, he’s the greatest player who ever lived. Second is Orr. Third is Mario. But they’re a distant second and third.”

    Carp, with all due respect to you and your blog (I’ve been checking this thing multiple times a day for a few years now, and you are the best at this by far,) you’re wrong. I never tried tearing Gretzky down. I’m a big fan. Especially with the love he had for the game. He was also a cocky kid when he first started. I also respect how he helped out Mario and told him to settle down and not to be a cocky kid. Orr, though is in a league of his own. He won the scoring title while winning the Norris trophy. And if you want to talk about playing in a tough era, Orr had to play with people going for his knees every game and it eventually ended his career. I’m not taking anything away from Gretzky, he’s a great player, but very different from Orr. Orr dominated both sides of the ice. And I don’t think even Wayne would disagree that 5 Bobby Orr’s would beat 5 Gretzky’s in a game.

    (P.S. Just because someone disagrees with you doesn’t mean you have to imply they are on drugs…)

  37. 33 games played x 2 pts could have been 66 pts max
    Rangers have 39 pts

    66 – 39 = 27 pts went bush league

  38. Just heard the coyotes backup goalie is hurt. Team is checking with local rinks for backups. Should be interesting to see who they get.

  39. Izzy Mandlebaum on

    “And I don’t think even Wayne would disagree that 5 Bobby Orr’s would beat 5 Gretzky’s in a game.”

    That has to be the most useless statement I’ve seen in a long time. You don’t know what Wayne thinks. There aren’t 5 Orrs or 5 Gretzkys. There is no way of knowing who would win such a game if it were possible. If I winced just reading that, your brain must be in excruciating agony.




  41. Noonan did you drink red bull, double espresso and 5 hour energy to make sure you don’t fall asleep tonight?

  42. davymax- *%$# listen to #*[(@!^% Boudreaux and stop #*[(@!^% feeling #*[(@!^% sorry for yourself!

  43. 5 In-His-Prime Messiers would leave 5 Gretzkys and Orrs laying broken on the ice…

    And 5 In-His-Prime Gordie Howes would possibly leave 2-3 corpses on the ice…

    Had to join in. ;-)

    I’m just basking…these past two games are the best back-to-back games I can remember in recent memory. The top two teams in the league…the NHL’s posterboy teams..and the Rangers beat them by a combined score of 11-1!

    I mean…Wow. Just wow. Loving this team. Imagine if we had a #1 center!

  44. gregm_section403 on

    “5 Kovalev’s playing full-effort (aka not bush-league) would beat 5 Orrs or 5 Gretzkys.”

    LOL. Getting just one Kovalev to play full-effort takes every ounce of a coaches persuasive skills. 5? The coach’s head would explode!

    Orr may have been a better all round player, but Gretzky’s stats are untouchable no matter what era he played in.

  45. ORR- if that how how addresses the issue after every loss, I’m not surprised they keep losing. I’m not convinced they understand what exactly they need to do. That tirade could only inspire my dog to bite his MZA.

  46. Joekuh-rury-mire on

    wow. maybe that show DOES have some hope.

    5 Sathers would draft 5 Jessimans then smoke 5 cigars at 5 fishing holes.

  47. I’m not sorry for myself, I’m sorry for the fact that I love reading this blog and sometimes I want to post things, but people aren’t reasonable enough to actually respond to things without resorting to ad hominem attacks. So, in essence, I’m sorry for those on the blog that are missing out on a good conversation/debate about something reasonable people can disagree on.

  48. ORR

    thanks for posting that clip!! funniest thing ever! i might just call the cablevision and get HBO!

    5 Drurys = 5 un-ruined Christmases!

  49. 5 martys would have 10 sons/ nephews who would also be each others cousins…let that blow your mind!!

  50. Gift of GAB-orik on

    5 Avery’s would lead to 1 Bettman having 10 heart attacks, 5 strokes, and lose 43 manpower games to injury. My logic is undeniable.

  51. Gift of GAB-orik on

    5 Dubinsky’s would pick 10 nostrils 15 times a game producing 45 images for Sally to snicker at!

  52. davymax,

    Your opinions are respected here. This is the very best Rangers blog. Carp is the man. We are boneheads. We are good people. We do not attack here. It is all in good fun.

    So, let’s debate.

    I think I understand why some (older) Rangers fans would rank Orr ahead of Gretzky. I think these fans put a lot of weight on how the Bruins used to destroy the Rangers in the early 70s thanks to Bobby Orr. The Rangers had a great team back then with the GAG line and a bunch of stud players. They made it to the finals in ’72 and lost to Orr and the B’s. The Rangers probably would have won a few cups in the 70s if Orr wasn’t around. So, in essense, I understand why some Rangers fans would think Bobby Orr is the greatest ever.

    However, Gretzky revolutionized the game. No one will ever come close to what Gretzky accomplished or did for hockey. Put him in any era and he is the best. Hockey is what it is today because of Wayne.

  53. Gift of GAB-orik on


    don’t take it personal man for real. Guys and gals on here are passionate, and sometimes express that passion is less than cordial or tactful ways.

    Thanks for sharing your opinions and thoughts, and furthering the debate, even if some people don’t agree.

    That is afterall the spirit of debating! Keep commenting man, to each their own!

  54. I know it’s last minute, but if anyone is looking for cheap tickets to tonight’s game, shoot me an email. I’ve caught a stomach bug and can’t make it to the game.

    Section 304 Row H Seats 7 & 8

    Face value – $56 season ticket cost. First reasonable offer gets the tickets emailed to them.

  55. It’s funny that you mention the older guys, because I’m only 24. I started following the Rangers in the 92-93 season, so I just made it before the Cup. There’s a lot of stuff that Gretzky did to get people to watch the game and to build up the game, no doubt. That’s not equivalent to being the best hockey player, even if he has done the most in history for the game. When I’m saying is that, on the ice, Bobby Orr provided more for his team than any other player. Gretzky was a great offensive player, but there’s more to the game that that. I think you could put Roy up there as one of the greatest hockey players ever for the same reason as Gretzky, he completely revolutionized goaltending in a similar way that Gretzky did offense. But I don’t see much merit in saying ok, well, was Roy better than Gretzky or the other way around. I think it only makes sense to compare apples to apples. And the numbers aren’t everything. Some of the greatest players don’t show up in numbers, but in everything else they do.

    Someone said that Gretzky was heads and shoulders above everyone else in the league when he played. That’s simply not true. Lemieux in the late 80s was right there with him and with a much worse team. So, let’s at least keep our facts straight.

  56. I’m starting a set of multiple Holiday Parties between now and New Year, so I’ll have to DVR many games, darn it. No spoilers. If I get any texts, FB messages, emails from anyone, trust me, it WILL ruin your Holidays.

  57. “oh forget davy max and his drama! can’t take the heat get the f outta the kitchen! :)”

    Yea, or just attack someone… Great way to live life. Super cool.

  58. davymax-
    Orr retired 7 years before you born, and Gretzky had his 6 best statistical seasons by the time you were born. So, unless you have access to some hard core film archive ….

    well, you do have onions

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