Pre-game notes courtesy of the NYR:
NEW YORK RANGERS vs. NEW JERSEY DEVILS
2012 Stanley Cup Playoffs – Eastern Conference Final, Game 5 (Series tied 2-2)
Wednesday, May 23, 8:00 p.m.
Madison Square Garden – New York, NY
Rangers (Regular Season): 51-24-7 (109 pts), 1st in East
Devils (Regular Season): 48-28-6 (102 pts), 6th in East
* All information through NHL games on May 21
The Rangers will face-off against the New Jersey Devils at Madison Square Garden (8:00 p.m.; TV: NBCSN; Radio: ESPN 98.7FM), in Game 5 of the Eastern Conference Final. The series is tied at two games apiece, following a 4-1 loss to the Devils in Game 4 on Monday at Prudential Center. The Rangers enter the contest with a 208-224-8 record all-time in 440 playoff contests (116-87-2 at home; 92-137-6 on the road). New York has posted a 24-32 record all-time in Game 5 of playoff series.
New York entered the 2012 Stanley Cup Playoffs as the top seed in the Eastern Conference having posted a record of 51-24-7 overall (27-12-2 at home; 24-12-5 on the road) for 109 points. The Rangers’ 51 wins ranked second in franchise history, while their 109 points tied for second all-time. The Blueshirts finished second in the NHL overall, tied for first in wins and led the league with 47 wins in regulation and overtime. New York is one of four Eastern Conference teams to have posted 40 or more wins in at least six seasons since 2005-06, and one of four teams in the East to have advanced to the playoffs in six of the last seven years.
ALL-TIME RANGERS PLAYOFF RECORDS:
Overall — 208-224-8
Home — 116-87-2
Away — 92-137-6
Goals for — 1,213
Goals against — 1,205
ALL-TIME PLAYOFF RECORDS — RANGERS vs. DEVILS
The Rangers and Devils are meeting in the playoffs for the sixth time overall and the third time in seven years. Their last postseason encounter was in the 2008 Eastern Conference Quarterfinals, a series won by the Rangers, 4-1. Overall, the Blueshirts have a 4-1 playoff series record vs. the Devils, posting an 18-14 mark in 32 postseason contests.
RANGERS vs. DEVILS:
All-Time (Regular Season): 101-84-27-6 overall (56-30-20-2 at home; 45-54-7-4 on the road)
2011-12: New York was 3-2-1 overall (2-1-0 at home; 1-1-1 on the road). Four of their six meetings were decided by two goals or less. Carl Hagelin led all skaters with six assists and eight points in the season series. Henrik Lundqvist was 3-2-0 with a 1.41 GAA, .940 Sv% and one shutout, while Martin Biron made 26 saves in his only appearance (4-3 shootout loss).
Thirteen of their last 17 regular season meetings have been decided by two goals or less
The Blueshirts have seven players with previous playoff experience against the Devils, led by Brad Richards (11 GP) who had registered three goals and eight assists against New Jersey entering the series
New York lists one former Devil on their roster: Mike Rupp (2002-03 – 2003-04, 2006-07 – 2008-09)
New Jersey lists one former Ranger on their roster: Petr Sykora (2005-06)
INDIVIDUAL SERIES LEADERS vs. DEVILS:
Henrik Lundqvist — 4 GP, 2-2, 1.51 GAA, .947 Sv%, 2 SO
Chris Kreider — 4 GP, 3-1-4
Dan Girardi — 4 GP, 2-2-4
Brad Richards — 4 GP, 0-3-3
The Rangers are 5-2 in games when out-scoring their opponent on special teams in the playoffs.
Power Play: The Rangers did not tally a goal in one power play attempt (2:00) in Game 4, and are now 4-11 (36.4%) in the series. New York ranks fourth overall (13-68, 19.1%) overall, and sixth at home (7-37, 18.9%). The Blueshirts are 1-1 in five-on-three situations (0:40; last – 4/23 at OTT), and 0-1 while skating four-on-three (0:30; last – 4/23 at OTT). Shorthanded goals allowed (0).
Penalty Killing: The Blueshirts surrendered one goal to the Devils in six shorthanded situations (8:04) in Game 4, and are now 16-18 (88.9%) in the series. New York is tied for eighth overall (54-64, 84.4%), and ranks sixth at home (27-32, 84.4%). New York is 2-2 in three-on-five situations (2:33; last – 5/22 at NJD). Shorthanded goals for (0).
Four-on-Four: New York did not tally/yield a goal in two four-on-four situations (2:18) in Game 4. The Rangers are plus-one in 11 four-on-four situations (12:40). Four-on-four goals for (1): Richards (4/30 vs. WSH). Four-on-four goals allowed (0).
RULE OF THREE
New York held their opponents to three goals or less in 17 consecutive playoff games from Apr. 12 vs. OTT to May 19 at NJD, which tied an NHL record established by Detroit in 2008. According to the Elias Sports Bureau, the Rangers are the first time in league history to do so in their first 17 games to begin the playoffs. The Rangers are 6-0 this postseason when tallying three or more goals, and are 0-6 when allowing three or more goals.
HOME SWEET HOME
The Rangers have won their last seven playoff series in which they held home-ice advantage, including a 4-3 series win against New Jersey in the 1994 Conference Final.
The Blueshirts have opened six of their last nine playoff series with a win in Game 1. The Rangers’ 3-0 win vs. the Devils in Game 1 was the 12th shutout by the Rangers in series opening games all-time. New York is 8-3 in playoff series when posting a shutout in Game 1. Overall, the Rangers have posted a 32-11 series record when winning Game 1, including wins in seven of the last eight playoff series in which the Blueshirts won the opening game.
The Rangers won their 100th victory all-time against the New Jersey Devils franchise on Feb. 27. The Blueshirts held the Devils to a season-low, 13 shots against in the 2-0 victory, the fewest shots allowed by the Rangers in a game since they held Calgary to 11 shots on goal on Jan. 19, 1981 at MSG. *courtesy of the Elias Sports Bureau
The Rangers are 20-8-3 overall (11-4-1 at home; 9-4-2 on the road) against the Devils in the regular season since 2007-08, dating back to a 2-0 win on Oct. 25, 2007. Henrik Lundqvist is 20-8-2 with a 1.96 GAA, .929 Sv% and six shutouts in 30 games over the span.
Henrik Lundqvist has faced-off against Martin Brodeur in 34 career regular season games, posting a record of 23-6-5 with a 1.73 GAA, .935 Sv% and five shutouts over the span.
Rookie Chris Kreider notched a goal in Game 3 of the Eastern Conference Final and, in the process, established a new NHL record for most playoff goals (five) and points (seven) by a player before skating in a regular season game. In Game 1 of the Conference Semifinals, Kreider recorded two points, including his first goal at Madison Square Garden with the game-winner, to become the youngest Ranger to record two points in a playoff game since Niklas Sundstrom on May 11, 1996, and the first Blueshirt rookie to register a multi-point effort in the postseason since Brandon Dubinsky on May 1, 2008. Kreider is the first New York rookie to register two game-winning goals in the postseason since Mike Allison in the 1981 playoffs.*courtesy of the Elias Sports Bureau
KING HENRIK’S ASCENSION
Henrik Lundqvist continues to climb the Rangers’ all-time playoff leaders list in several goaltending categories. He posted a 36-save shutout in Game 3 of the Conference Final to pass Ed Giacomin and John Ross Roach for third in franchise history with six career playoff shutouts. In the first round, Lundqvist passed John Vanbiesbrouck for third in franchise history with his 39th career playoff appearance in Game 4 at Ottawa, while his 25-save effort in a 3-2 win in Game 6 of that series moved him past Dave Kerr for third all-time with 18 playoff victories.
COOL UNDER PRESSURE
Henrik Lundqvist has posted 30 or more saves in the playoffs 15 times, posting an 8-7 record with a 1.60 GAA, .951 Sv% and three shutouts in those contests.
Rangers defensemen lead the league in playoff scoring with a combined 11 goals and 35 points in 18 games. Dan Girardi leads all defensemen in points (11), and is tied for first in goals (three) and assists (eight). Michael Del Zotto is tied for second in points (10) and first in assists (eight), while Marc Staal and Anton Stralman are tied for the lead in defensemen goals with three apiece.
New York leads the league with 603 hits in the playoffs. The Blueshirts have five players ranked in the top 11 in the NHL – Ryan Calahan (1st, 76), Michael Del Zotto (T-5th, 58), Brian Boyle (T-7th, 53), Brandon Prust (10th, 49), and Dan Girardi (11th, 48).
The Rangers rank first in the NHL with 340 blocked shots in the playoffs, paced by Dan Girardi (T-1st, 54), Ryan McDonagh (T-1st, 54), Marc Staal (6th, 35), and Ryan Callahan (9th, 30). Ruslan Fedotenko (22) and Brad Richards (16) also rank third and tied for sixth, respectively, in blocked shots among NHL forwards.
The Rangers advanced to the Conference Final behind a pair of 2-1 Game 7 victories, defeating the Ottawa Senators in their Conference Quarterfinal series and the Washington Capitals in the Conference Semifinals. New York remains undefeated in Game 7s played at MSG, having posted a record of 5-0 in those contests. The Rangers are 5-5 all-time in Game 7s, with eight of the 10 games being decided by one goal. Head Coach John Tortorella is 4-1 all-time in Game 7s, with the final score of all five contests being 2-1.
Michael Sauer (concussion, 12/5) — 18
Mats Zuccarello (fractured wrist, 3/23) — 18
Brandon Dubinsky (injured, 4/26) — 11
Total Man-Games Lost (Regular Season): 237
Total Man-Games Lost (Playoffs): 57