Rangers at Penguins tonight


pre-game notes courtesy of the NYR:

Friday, Jan. 6, 7:00 p.m.
CONSOL Energy Center – Pittsburgh, PA
Rangers: 25-9-4 (54 pts)
Penguins: 21-13-4 (46 pts)

* All information through NHL games on Jan. 5

The Rangers will face-off against the Pittsburgh Penguins at CONSOL Energy Center (7:00 p.m.; TV: MSG 2; Radio: 970 The Apple), to conclude their back-to-back set. The Blueshirts currently sit atop the Eastern Conference standings, and rank first in the league overall, with a record of 25-9-4 (54 pts). The Rangers enter the contest having defeated the Florida Panthers, 3-2, in overtime last night at Madison Square Garden to extend their winning streak to three games, and have won eight of their last nine games. New York has posted a record of 22-6-2 since Oct. 29, after beginning the season with a 3-3-2 mark. The Penguins enter the contest with a 21-13-4 (46 pts) record to rank sixth in the Eastern Conference, and have lost their last two games. Following the contest, the Rangers will face-off against the Phoenix Coyotes on Tuesday, Jan. 10, at Madison Square Garden (7:00 p.m.), in their first of four games in six days.

* All-Time: 116-97-23-8 overall (65-46-9-3 at home; 51-51-14-5 on the road)
* 2011-12: Tonight is the second of six meetings this season, and the first of three at CONSOL Energy Center. New York is 1-0-0 overall following a 4-3 win on Nov. 29 at Madison Square Garden. The Rangers tallied four goals in the second period, including two on the power play. Brad Richards led all skaters with three points (one goal, two assists), and Henrik Lundqvist made 24 saves in the win.
* Last Season: New York was 4-1-1 overall, with a 3-0-0 mark on the road. The Rangers power play was 7-22 (31.8%) in the season series, while the penalty kill was 20-22 (90.9%). New York out-scored Pittsburgh, 21-15, including a 10-4 margin in the third period and overtime. Ryan Callahan led the Rangers with five goals, nine points, four power play goals and three game-winning goals in six games, while Brandon Dubinsky tallied a team-high, six assists in the season series. Henrik Lundqvist was 4-1-1 with a 2.29 GAA and .926 Sv%.
* The Rangers have registered at least one point in eight of their last nine meetings with the Penguins, posting a record of 6-1-2 over the span
* The Blueshirts have won their last three meetings with the Penguins, having out-scored Pittsburgh, 14-8, during the streak
* New York ranks second with a 13-6-2 (28 pts) record on the road; Pittsburgh ranks 17th with an 11-4-2 (24 pts) mark at home
* The Rangers have posted an 8-1-0 record vs. Atlantic Division opponents; the Penguins are 5-4-0 vs. the Atlantic Division
* Henrik Lundqvist has posted a 21-13-5 record with a 2.42 GAA and two shutouts in 39 career regular season contests vs. Pittsburgh; Martin Biron is 13-15-3-2 with a 2.98 GAA and two shutouts in 33 career regular season games vs. the Penguins
* Brad Richards leads the Rangers with 24 assists and 31 points in 28 career regular season contests vs. Pittsburgh; Marian Gaborik has tallied 19 points, including a team-high nine goals, in 19 career regular season games vs. the Penguins
* New York lists three former Penguins on their roster: Erik Christensen (2005-06 – 2007-08); Ruslan Fedotenko (2008-09 – 2009-10); Mike Rupp (2009-10 – 2010-11)
* Pittsburgh lists one former Ranger on their roster: Pascal Dupuis (2006-07)

The Rangers rank seventh in the NHL with a plus-six rating on special teams [(PPG+SHG)-(PPGA+SHGA)]. New York is 13-68 (19.1%) with the man advantage in the last 20 games. The Blueshirts’ penalty kill has held their opponent scoreless in each of their last five games (12-12, 100.0%), and are 37-41 (90.2%) with four shorthanded goals in the last 14 contests. The Rangers are tied for third in the NHL with five shorthanded goals. The Blueshirts have posted a record of 15-1-2 in games when tallying a power play goal, and are 17-4-2 when holding their opponent scoreless on the power play.
* Power Play: The Rangers tallied one goal in three power play attempts (4:37) last night vs. Florida. New York ranks 20th overall (22-142, 15.5%) and 29th on the road (7-69, 10.1%). The Rangers are 2-12 (8:51) in five-on-three situations (last – 12/23 vs. PHI), and 0-4 (3:46) when four-on-three (last – 11/3 vs. ANA). Shorthanded goals allowed (3): 12/5 vs. TOR (Steckel); 12/8 vs. TBL (Moore); 12/17 at PHX (Korpikoski).
* Penalty Killing: The Blueshirts held the Panthers scoreless in one shorthanded situation (2:00) last night at MSG. New York ranks sixth overall (114-132, 86.4%) and seventh on the road (66-77, 85.7%). The Rangers are 5-6 (3:26) in three-on-five situations (last – 12/17 at PHX), and 0-1 (1:17) when three-on-four (last – 10/7 at LAK). Shorthanded goals for (5): 10/20 at CGY (Prust); 12/8 vs. TBL (Anisimov); 12/10 at BUF (Hagelin); 12/10 at BUF (Callahan); 12/20 at NJD (Hagelin).
* Four-on-Four: New York tallied one goal in one four-on-four situation (3:29) last night vs. Florida. The Rangers are plus-four in 39 four-on-four situations (69:22), and even in one three-on-three situation (0:01). Four-on-four goals for (4): 10/18 at VAN (Gaborik); 10/20 at CGY (McDonagh); 10/27 vs. TOR (Girardi); 1/2 vs. FLA (Gaborik). Four-on-four goals allowed (0).

The Rangers will complete their sixth of 14 back-to-back sets this season tonight at Pittsburgh. New York has posted a record of 5-0-1 (3-0-0 at home, 2-0-1 on the road) in the first game of the set, and are 4-0-1 (4-0-0 at home, 0-0-1 on the road) in the second game. Since 2009-10, New York is 25-8-3 in the second game of back-to-back sets, with a 13-3-1 mark at MSG and 12-5-2 on the road over the span. Henrik Lundqvist has started on consecutive days 56 times in his career, posting a record of 35-14-7 with a 1.82 GAA, .935 Sv% and six shutouts in the second game.

The Rangers completed last season’s series against Pittsburgh with a 3-0-0 record at CONSOL Energy Center, having out-scored the Penguins, 12-5, in those games. It was the first time the Blueshirts swept the season series in Pittsburgh since 1996-97 (2-0-0), and the first time since 1973-74 that a Rangers team won three games at Pittsburgh in the same season (3-0-0). New York has won four straight in Pittsburgh, dating back to a 3-2 overtime win on Feb. 12, 2010.

The Rangers’ .711 winning percentage (25-9-4) is the team’s best start through 38 games since their 1993-94 Stanley Cup Championship season (26-9-3, .724 win%), and is tied for fourth best start in franchise history. *courtesy of the Elias Sports Bureau

The Rangers rank among the league leaders in several statistical categories, including…
* 1st in points (54)
* 2nd in win% (.711)
* T-2nd in wins (25)
* T-1st in regulation/overtime wins (24)
* 1st in fewest regulation losses (nine)
* 2nd in fewest goals against (78)
* 2nd in GAA (2.05)
* 3rd in hits (1,060)
* 7th in blocked shots (612)
* 3rd in +/- rating (plus-30)
* 4th in goal differential (plus-32)

* The last time the Rangers sat atop the Eastern Conference standings this late into the season was Mar. 15, 1996 (game #68). *courtesy of the Elias Sports Bureau
* New York has registered at least one point in 24 of their last 30 games (22-6-2), dating back to Oct. 29, after beginning the season with a 3-3-2 mark; The Rangers have out-scored their opponent, 97-63, during the stretch
* The Blueshirts’ 12-3-2 (26 pts) mark at MSG is their best start at home through 17 games since 1995-96 (13-2-2, 28 pts)
* New York is 7-1-1 when leading after the first period and 15-0-2 when leading after the second
* The Rangers lead the league with a .300 win% when trailing after two periods (3-6-1), and their three third period comeback victories are tied for sixth in the NHL
* New York leads the NHL with an .800 win% when out-shooting their opponent (12-3-0)
* The Rangers lead the league when scoring first, posting an 18-1-1 mark (.900 win%) in those contests; Their 18 wins rank third in the NHL

* Henrik Lundqvist enters the contest with a five-game winning streak, posting a 1.20 GAA, .962 Sv% and one shutout over the span
* Lundqvist has held opponents to two or fewer goals in 19 games this season, and is 15-4-1 with a 1.74 GAA, .942 Sv% and two shutouts over the last two months (20 games)
* Lundqvist ranks fourth in the NHL in GAA (1.92) and Sv% (.937), is tied for sixth in wins (17) and fifth in shutouts (three)
* Martin Biron has held opponents to two or fewer goals in seven of his 10 starts this season
* Marian Gaborik has tallied nine points (eight goals, one assist) and a plus-seven rating in the last nine games
* Gaborik is tied for second in the NHL with 23 goals
* Michael Del Zotto has tallied 17 points (three goals, 14 assists) in the last 19 games, including seven points (two goals, five assists) in the last seven contests
* Del Zotto is tied for first among NHL defensemen and third in the league overall with a plus-25 rating
* Ryan Callahan enters the contest with a six-game point streak (two goals, five assists over the span), and has recorded 19 points (six goals, 13 assists) in the last 20 games
* Brandon Dubinsky has tallied six points (three goals, three assists) in the last seven games
* Brad Richards enters the contest with a three-game point streak (two goals, one assist over the span)
* Anton Stralman has tallied five points (one goal, four assists) in the last seven games, has posted a plus-10 rating in the last eight and has logged 20:00+ of ice time in seven of the last 10 contests

* Brandon Dubinsky: 2 points from 200th NHL career
* Marian Gaborik: 1 assist from 300th NHL career
* Dan Girardi: 2 assists from 100th NHL career

* Wojtek Wolski (groin, 11/3) – 27
* Michael Sauer (concussion, 12/5) – 14
* Steve Eminger (shoulder, 12/17) – 8
Total Man-Games Lost: 121

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  1. So did Lavi let the home team off the ice first when he was a player? Or is that something he picked up in Philly?

  2. The last time the Rangers sat atop the Eastern Conference standings this late into the season was Mar. 15, 1996 (game #68)


  3. iWicky (Leeloo Dallas mul-ti-pass) on

    Afternoon ILB and all!

    I think rupp looks night and day better than at the beginning of the season. Man, good thing he wasn’t hurt or anything!!

    Power play needs to move their feet more!!


  4. Boom Boom Bathgate / "Sloppy Firsts" on

    Carped Again! But I invite my legion of friends here to check out my tribute to Avery in the previous post. It is beyond surrealistic!

  5. Good afternoon once again, Sally!

    Rupp’s got to fight the big guy, doesn’t he? Maybe Prust-Asham. Hasn’t been any fisticuffs last couple of games.

  6. Carp,

    This game is slated to be on nhl network. Do you know if it will be blacked out on time warner even though i cant watch otherwise?


  7. Pens practice lines:


  8. Boom Boom,

    Gotta say, you’re Wavery posts freak me out! WTH?

    That was a perfect bit of Carping, btw.

    Any chance you can, ya know, stop posting this (below) about the AHLer? Thanks.

    “I am one intrepid Avery Fan, and believe it or not, his spirit of feistyness and paying whatever the price has to be paid for success is rooted in this team and spurring it to the heights, so that Aves is still here, and the driving force behind the team’s recent impressive successes.”

  9. Matt R: If you check the Time Warner site, tonight’s game is not one of the three Ranger games being televised on “non-MSG” channels for the month of January. It is possible that could change. Time Warner moved NHL Network to channel 48/748 (formerly the home of MSG Plus)

  10. I know Izzy, I was also right in front and behind that guy (could’ve been a lady, who knows) in a Flyers jersey too!

  11. CT Blue

    Thanks for that link. How cool! I found my bro, my friend, and me. Too bad my 6yr old all bundled up between me and my bro you can’t see the little man.

    BTW, I don’t know about everyone else but I am plenty happy that all the rankings by the “know it alls” and stuff still have the Rangers below the Bruins, Hawks, Canucks, etc. Let it be that way. We do better as the underdog.

    I predict Asham v. Prust and/or Rupp vs. Engelland.

  12. Orr and ANF

    Thanks for the info. Where did you see what games will be televised on non msg channels?

  13. Afternoon gang! Officially my last day in NY as I head back to MO tomorrow :(

    Should be a good one tonight, me thinks!

  14. With the year Ashem is having , I hope it is Rupp. Thank God Big Mac is first line press box.

    LGR !!!

  15. Matt R: If you go onto the Time Warner site, I believe they have a list of games for non-MSG broadcasts. If you can’t find it, I can post the link.

  16. billybleedsblue on

    This pic is so adorably hilarious: http://bit.ly/9g20hB

    Anyone hear if CryBaby is playing tonight?

    I’m wondering when the Rangers experience the first real backlash for Torts speakin’ the truth about the WC. Mayhaps it’s tonight? I hope it’s a non-factor (not IF) WHEN it happens :/ And, Kathryn Tappen.

  17. Rangers play on NBC/NBC Sports Network [Versus] for the following games…

    Jan 15 at Montreal
    Jan 17 vs Nashville
    Feb 1 at Buffalo
    Feb 12 vs Capitals [NBC]
    Feb 27 vs Devils
    March 4 vs Bruins [NBC]
    March 13 vs Hurricanes
    March 19 vs Devils
    March 21 vs Red Wings
    April 1 vs Bruins [NBC]
    April 7 vs Capitals [NBC]

  18. is that the day’s first Kathryn Tappen reference?

    Does anybody know if the Stall on Pittsburgh is related to the Stahl on New York? Maybe they can find that out during the broadcast.

  19. Would have been funnier if you said tear “ducks,” Manny, but we know that you’re differently-abled.

  20. Wow, BANJ. I miss Chris Farley. That was a great 4+ minutes. Thanks man. If I was a hockey player and I got a double minor I would watch that sketch in the penalty box.

  21. Latona – I actually typed that and then I realized that ducks really have nothing to do with Penguins. So ya know, seemed kind of obvious and…well….beneath me.

  22. billybleedsblue on

    Awww, man… I miss Chris Farley. I remember lots of people I know didn’t like him because he was always falling through tables and was very physical in his comedy (he actually wasn’t really THAT into this aspect of his ‘role’) but man, he was FUUUUNNEEEEEEEEY. Why is it always these amazing people do amazingly stupid things and then leave us? :(

    Awww man, great clip BANJ… thanks man!

  23. >>is that the day’s first Kathryn Tappen reference?

    Billybleedsblue had one at 11:08 am.

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