Pre-game notes, courtesy of the NYR:
NEW YORK RANGERS vs. BOSTON BRUINS
Sunday, Mar. 4, 12:30 p.m.
Madison Square Garden – New York, NY
Rangers: 41-15-7 (89 pts)
Bruins: 38-22-3 (79 pts)
* All information through NHL games on Mar. 2
The Rangers will face-off against the Boston Bruins at Madison Square Garden (12:30 p.m.; TV: NBC; Radio: Bloomberg Radio), in an Original Six matinee match-up. The Blueshirts currently sit atop the Eastern Conference standings, and rank second in the league overall, with a record of 41-15-7 (89 pts). The Rangers enter the contest having been defeated by the Tampa Bay Lightning, 4-3, in overtime on Friday at Tampa Bay to end their three-game winning streak, and are now 12-3-3 in their last 18 games. The Bruins enter the contest with a 38-22-3 (79 pts) record to rank second in the Eastern Conference, and have lost five of their last eight games. Following the contest, the Rangers will face-off against the New Jersey Devils on Tuesday, Mar. 6, at Prudential Center (7:00 p.m.), in an Atlantic Division match-up.
RANGERS vs. BRUINS:
* All-Time: 246-281-97-2 overall (141-118-55-0 at home; 105-163-42-2 on the road)
* 2011-12: Tonight is the third of four meetings this season, and the first of two at Madison Square Garden. New York is 2-0-0 (0-0-0 at home; 2-0-0 on the road) following a 3-0 win on Feb. 14 at TD Garden. The Rangers have out-scored the Bruins, 6-2, in the series. The Blueshirts’ power play is 2-4 (50.0%), while their penalty kill has held the Bruins scoreless in five shorthanded situations. Ryan Callahan (two goals, one assist) and Marian Gaborik (two goals, one assist) are tied for the team-lead in scoring with three points apiece. Henrik Lundqvist is 2-0-0 with a 0.96 GAA, .974 Sv% and one shutout.
* Last Season: New York was 3-1-0 overall (1-1-0 at home; 2-0-0 on the road). Three of their four meetings were decided by one goal. The Rangers penalty kill was 10-11 (90.9%) in the series. New York out-scored Boston, 4-1, in the third period. Derek Stepan (two goals, two assists) and Michael Sauer (one goal, three assists) tied for the team-high with four points in the series. Henrik Lundqvist was 3-1-0 with a 2.01 GAA, .929 Sv% and one shutout in four contests.
* The Rangers enter the contest with a four-game winning streak against the Bruins, and have won eight of their last 10 meetings
* Henrik Lundqvist has started in 22 consecutive games against Boston, dating back to Jan. 13, 2007
* New York ranks fifth with a 21-7-2 (44 pts) record at home; Boston ranks fifth with a 19-10-1 (39 pts) mark on the road
* The Rangers are 8-5-1 vs. the Northeast Division; the Bruins are 9-4-1 vs. the Atlantic Division
* New York lists no former Bruins on their roster
* Boston lists two former Rangers on their roster: Marc Savard (1997-98 – 1998-99); Mike Mottau (2000-01 – 2001-02)
INDIVIDUAL CAREER LEADERS vs. BRUINS:
* Henrik Lundqvist — 25 GP, 18-5-2, 1.45 GAA, 6 SO
* Martin Biron — 31 GP, 12-12-2-1, 2.66 GAA, 1 SO
* Brad Richards — 32 GP, 7-20-27
* Ruslan Fedotenko — 38 GP, 8-10-18
* Ryan Callahan — 18 GP, 5-6-11
* Anton Stralman — 10 GP, 1-3-4
The Rangers have tallied eight power play goals in the last 12 games, posting a 20.5% success rate over the span (8-39). The Blueshirts penalty kill has held opponents scoreless in 20 of the last 30 games (75-85, 88.2% over the span). The Rangers are tied for fifth in the NHL with seven shorthanded goals. The Blueshirts have posted a record of 19-1-4 in games when tallying a power play goal, and are 28-7-3 when not allowing a power play goal.
* Power Play: The Rangers tallied one goal in two power play attempts (2:00) on Friday at Tampa Bay. New York is tied for 26th overall (31-215, 14.4%) and ranks 26th at home (16-112, 14.3%). The Rangers are 3-14 (11:24) in five-on-three situations (last – 3/2 at TBL), and 1-8 (10:10) when four-on-three (last – 3/2 at TBL). 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 Lightning scoreless in four shorthanded situations (7:15) on Friday at Tampa Bay. New York ranks sixth overall (177-205, 86.3%) and is tied for sixth at home (75-88, 85.2%). The Rangers are 8-9 (4:34) in three-on-five situations (last – 2/16 vs. CHI), and 2-3 (2:24) when three-on-four (last – 2/16 vs. CHI). Shorthanded goals for (7): 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); 1/6 at PIT (Dubinsky); 2/12 vs. WSH (Prust).
* Four-on-Four: New York surrendered one goal in three four-on-four situations (4:01) on Friday at Tampa Bay. The Rangers are plus-six in 69 four-on-four situations (125:15), and even in two three-on-three situations (0:38). Four-on-four goals for (9): 10/18 at VAN (Gaborik); 10/20 at CGY (McDonagh); 10/27 vs. TOR (Girardi); 1/2 vs. FLA (Gaborik); 2/9 vs. TBL (Stepan); 2/9 vs. TBL (Richards); 2/14 at BOS (Anisimov); 2/19 vs. CBJ (Stepan), 2/25 vs. BUF (Callahan). Four-on-four goals allowed (3): 2/9 vs. TBL (Lecavalier); 2/25 vs. BUF (Stafford); 3/2 at TBL (Malone).
ORIGINAL SIX SINCE 2005-06
New York has posted a record of 50-30-12 against Original Six teams since 2005-06, including a 19-5-2 mark vs. Boston over the span. The Rangers’ .609 win% over the span ranks third, trailing Detroit (.671, 44-20-6) and Montreal (.613, 75-45-13), and ahead of Boston (.519, 60-55-20), Chicago (.514, 32-30-11), and Toronto (.496, 56-57-18).
15 of the last 19 meetings between the Rangers and Bruins have been decided by one goal, including six games that required extra time and five that went to the shootout, dating back to Mar. 24, 2007. Three of the other four games during the stretch were decided by two goals, while one was decided by three goals. New York is 9-4-2 in one- goal games against Boston over the span.
HOME SWEET HOME
The Blueshirts’ 21-7-2 (44 pts) mark at Madison Square Garden is their best record at home through 30 games since 1995-96 (19-5-6, 44 pts).
PLACE IN HISTORY
The Rangers’ .706 win% is the team’s best record through 63 games in 40 years, when the 1971-72 Blueshirts began the season with a 42-11-10 record (.746 win%), and is the second best mark in franchise history. The Rangers reached the 40-win mark in 61 games, which is tied as the second fastest to 40-wins in franchise history.
The Rangers rank among the NHL leaders in several statistical categories…
* T-2nd in points (89)
* 1st in win% (.706)
* T-2nd in wins (41)
* 1st in regulation/overtime wins (38)
* 1st in fewest regulation losses (15)
* 2nd in fewest goals against (125)
* 2nd in GAA (1.98)
* 1st in hits (1,881)
* 4th in blocked shots (1,042)
* 3rd in +/- rating (plus-44)
* 4th in goal differential (plus-45)
* This is the latest the Rangers have been in first place of the Eastern Conference standings since the 1995-96 season, when New York held the top position through games played on Mar. 15, 1996 (NYR game #68). *courtesy of the Elias Sports Bureau
* New York has registered at least one point in 43 of their last 55 games (38-12-5), dating back to Oct. 29, after beginning the season with a 3-3-2 mark
* New York is 15-1-3 when leading after the first period and 26-0-3 when leading after the second
* The Rangers are tied for third in the league with a .250 win% when trailing after two periods (4-11-1), and their four third period comeback victories are tied for 10th in the NHL; New York has trailed entering the third period in 16 games this season, which is the fewest in the league
* New York leads the NHL with a .767 win% when out-shooting their opponent (23-6-1)
* The Rangers lead the league when scoring first, posting a 29-1-3 mark (.879 win%) in those contests; Their 29 wins rank third in the NHL
THE HOT LIST:
* Henrik Lundqvist — 10-2-1 with a 1.44 GAA, .946 Sv% and four shutouts in the last 13 games
* Marian Gaborik — 23 points (eight goals, 15 assists) in the last 21 games; seven points (four goals, three assists) in the last five games
* Derek Stepan — 11 points (three goals, eight assists) in the last 14 games; three assists in the last two games
* Ryan Callahan — 11 points (eight goals, three assists) in his last 10 games
* Carl Hagelin — six points (three goals, three assists) in the last eight games; four points (two goals, two assists) in the last four games
* Michael Del Zotto — 10 points (two goals, eight assists) in his last 16 games; seven assists in his last 11 games
* Brad Richards — nine points (two goals, seven assists) in the last 12 games; three assists in the last four games
* Artem Anisimov — 10 points (six goals, four assists) in the last 14 games; two goals in the last two games
* Ryan McDonagh — five points (two goals, three assists) in the last 10 games
* Steve Eminger — 4 points from 100 NHL career
* Ruslan Fedotenko — 1 game to 800 NHL career
* Michael Sauer (concussion, 12/5) — 39
* Ryan Callahan (bruised foot, 2/27) — 2
* Michael Del Zotto (hip, 3/1) — 1
Total Man-Games Lost: 184