Pre-game notes courtesy of the NYR:
NEW YORK RANGERS vs. BOSTON BRUINS
Sunday, Apr. 1, 7:00 p.m.
Madison Square Garden – New York, NY
Rangers: 50-21-7 (107 pts)
Bruins: 46-28-4 (96 pts)
* All information through NHL games on Mar. 30
The Rangers will face-off against the Boston Bruins at Madison Square Garden (7:00 p.m.; TV: NBC Sports Network; Radio: 1050 ESPN Radio), in an Original Six matchup. The Blueshirts currently sit atop the Eastern Conference standings, and rank first in the league overall, with a record of 50-21-7 (107 pts). The Rangers enter the contest having defeated the Montreal Canadiens, 4-1, on Friday at Madison Square Garden for their 50th win of the season. New York extended its winning streak to four games, and has won six of the last seven games. The Bruins enter the contest with a 46-28-4 (96 pts) record to rank second in the Eastern Conference, and have won six of the last eight games. Following the contest, the Rangers will face-off against the Philadelphia Flyers on Tuesday, Apr. 3, at Wells Fargo Center (7:00 p.m.), in an Atlantic Division matchup.
RANGERS vs. BRUINS:
* All-Time: 247-281-97-2 overall (142-118-55-0 at home; 105-163-42-2 on the road)
* 2011-12: Tonight is the fourth and final meeting this season, and the second at MSG. New York is 3-0-0 (1-0-0 at home; 2-0-0 on the road) following a 4-3 win on Mar. 4 at MSG. The Rangers have out-scored the Bruins, 10-5, including a 4-1 advantage in the third period and overtime. The Blueshirts’ power play is 2-5 (40.0%), while their penalty kill has held the Bruins scoreless in eight shorthanded situations. Marian Gaborik leads the team with three goals and four points, while Michael Del Zotto and Brad Richards have each tallied a team-high, three assists. Henrik Lundqvist is 3-0-0 with a 1.62 GAA, .954 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.
* The Rangers enter the contest with a five-game winning streak against the Bruins, and have won nine of their last 11 meetings
* Henrik Lundqvist has started in 23 consecutive games against Boston, dating back to Jan. 13, 2007
* New York ranks fifth with a 27-10-2 (56 pts) record at home; Boston ranks fourth with a 23-15-1 (47 pts) mark on the road
* The Rangers are 11-7-1 vs. the Northeast Division; the Bruins are 11-6-1 vs. the Atlantic Division
* New York lists no former Bruins on their roster
* Boston lists two former Rangers on their roster: Mike Mottau (2000-01 – 2001-02); Marc Savard (1997-98 – 1998-99)
INDIVIDUAL CAREER LEADERS vs. BRUINS:
* Henrik Lundqvist — 26 GP, 19-5-2, 1.51 GAA, 6 SO
* Martin Biron — 31 GP, 12-12-2-1, 2.66 GAA, 1 SO
* Brad Richards — 33 GP, 7-22-29
* Ryan Callahan — 18 GP, 5-6-11
* Michael Del Zotto — 9 GP, 2-4-6
The Rangers’ power play has tallied four goals in the last two games (4-9, 44.4% over the span), and are 9-38 (23.7%) in the last 11 games. New York’s penalty kill has held opponents scoreless in six of the last seven games (16-18, 88.9% over the span), and are 41-46 (89.1%) in the last 16 games. The Rangers are tied for seventh in the NHL with eight shorthanded goals. The Blueshirts have posted a record of 24-1-4 in games when tallying a power play goal, and are 34-12-3 when not allowing a power play goal.
* Power Play: The Rangers tallied two goals in four power play attempts (6:24) on Friday vs. Montreal. New York ranks 25th overall (40-262, 15.3%) and is tied for 18th at home (23-140, 16.4%). The Rangers are 3-15 (11:31) in five-on-three situations (last – 3/13 vs. CAR), and 2-9 (12:08) when four-on-three (last – 3/11 vs. NYI). 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 Canadiens scoreless in three shorthanded situations (6:00) on Friday at MSG. New York ranks fifth overall (213-246, 86.6%) and is tied for fifth at home (97-113, 85.8%). The Rangers are 9-10 (6:17) in three-on-five situations (last – 3/28 at WPG), and 2-3 (2:24) when three-on-four (last – 2/16 vs. CHI). Shorthanded goals for (8): 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); 3/28 at WPG (Del Zotto).
* Four-on-Four: New York did not skate in a four-on-four situation on Friday vs. Montreal. The Rangers are plus-seven in 80 four-on-four situations (145:47), and even in two three-on-three situations (0:38). Four-on-four goals for (10): 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); 3/21 vs. DET (Callahan). Four-on-four goals allowed (3): 2/9 vs. TBL (Lecavalier); 2/25 vs. BUF (Stafford); 3/2 at TBL (Malone).
ORIGINAL SIX SHOWDOWN:
* The Blueshirts have skated in 14 of 15 scheduled games against Original Six opponents this season (8-6-0)
* Henrik Lundqvist is 7-4-0 with a 2.43 GAA and one shutout; Martin Biron is 1-2-0 with a 2.70 GAA and one shutout
* Marian Gaborik leads the Rangers in scoring against Original Six opponents this season with seven goals and 13 points
* Brad Richards has tallied 12 points against Original Six opponents this season, including a team-high, eight assists
* Michael Del Zotto leads all team defensemen in scoring with 10 points (four goals, six assists) against Original Six opponents this season
* New York has posted a record of 54-31-12 against Original Six teams since 2005-06, including a 20-5-2 mark vs. Boston over the span. The Rangers’ .619 win% over the span ranks second, trailing Detroit (.660, 44-21-7), and ahead of Montreal (.604, 75-47-13), Chicago (.527, 34-30-11), Boston (.522, 62-56-20), and Toronto (.493, 57-59-19).
16 of the last 20 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 10-4-2 in one-goal games against Boston over the span.
PLACE IN TEAM HISTORY
New York continues to climb the team’s all-time single season wins and points lists, currently sitting in a tie for second in wins and ranking fourth in points. The Rangers reached the 50-win mark for the third time in franchise history with a 4-1 victory vs. Montreal on Mar. 30, and eclipsed the 100-point mark for the seventh time with a 4-3 shootout win at Toronto on Mar. 24. The Blueshirts reached the 40-win mark in 61 games, which is tied as the second fewest games to reach 40 wins in team history.
SINGLE SEASON WINS
SINGLE SEASON POINTS
MARCHING INTO THE PLAYOFFS
Brad Richards ranks second in the NHL with 22 points (seven goals, 15 assists) during the month of March, trailing Pittsburgh’s Evgeni Malkin by one point. Marian Gaborik is tied for third in the league with 10 goals and ranks third with 20 points in March.
The Rangers rank among the NHL leaders in several statistical categories…
* 1st in points (107)
* 1st in win% (.686)
* 1st in wins (50)
* 1st in regulation/overtime wins (46)
* T-2nd in fewest regulation losses (21)
* 3rd in fewest goals against (168)
* 3rd in GAA (2.15)
* 1st in hits (2,316)
* 2nd in blocked shots (1,282)
* 4th in +/- rating (plus-38)
* 6th in goal differential (plus-44)
* The Rangers became the first Eastern Conference team, and second in the league overall, to clinch a playoff spot with a 4-2 win on Mar. 19 vs. NJD (game #72); The last time the Blueshirts clinched a playoff berth that early was in 1991-92, when New York clinched on Mar. 8 (through game #68) following a Philadelphia defeat to Vancouver
* This is the latest the Rangers have been in first place of the Eastern Conference standings since the team captured the Presidents’ Trophy during the 1993-94 season. *courtesy of the Elias Sports Bureau
* The Rangers posted a combined record of 19-4-5 in back-to-back games this season, including a 9-2-3 (3-1-0 at home, 6-1-3 on the road) record in the first game and a 10-2-2 (6-0-0 at home, 4-2-2 on the road) mark in the second
* New York is 20-2-3 when leading after the first period and 29-0-3 when leading after the second
* The Rangers rank third in the league with a .238 win% when trailing after two periods (5-15-1), and are tied for ninth in the NHL with five third period comeback wins
* New York leads the NHL with a .732 win% when out-shooting their opponent (30-10-1)
* The Rangers rank second in the league when scoring first, posting a 34-4-3 mark (.829 win%) in those contests
THE HOT LIST:
* Henrik Lundqvist — four-game win streak (1.96 GAA, .916 Sv% over the span); has held opponents to two or fewer goals in six of the last eight games (6-2-0, 2.10 GAA, .910 Sv% over the span)
* Brad Richards — four-game assist/point streak (one goal, six assists over the span); 19 points (seven goals, 12 assists) in the last 13 games
* Marian Gaborik — four-game point streak (four goals, three assists over the span); 15 points (seven goals, eight assists) in the last 12 games
* Michael Del Zotto — six points (three goals, three assists) in the last six games
* Brian Boyle — three goals in the last five games
* Brandon Dubinsky — five points (two goals, three assists) in the last seven games
* Martin Biron — 1 game from 500 NHL career
* Ryan Callahan — 3 points from 200 NHL career
MILESTONES RECENTLY ACHIEVED:
* Henrik Lundqvist — 250th career NHL win (3/28 at WPG)
* Michael Del Zotto — 200th career NHL game (3/30 vs. MTL)
* Michael Sauer (concussion, 12/5) — 54
* Steve Eminger (injured, 3/15) — 8
* Mats Zuccarello (injured, 3/23) — 4
Total Man-Games Lost: 225
* Mar. 29 — Assigned defenseman Tim Erixon to Connecticut (AHL)