Pre-game notes courtesy of the NYR:
NEW YORK RANGERS vs. TAMPA BAY LIGHTNING
Sunday, Feb. 10, 7:30 p.m.
Madison Square Garden – New York, NY
Rangers: 5-5-0 (10 pts)
Lightning: 6-4-0 (12 pts)
The Rangers will face-off against the Tampa Bay Lightning at Madison Square Garden (7:30 p.m. — TV: MSG Network; Radio: ESPN 98.7), in their second meeting in eight days. The Blueshirts currently rank fourth in the Atlantic Division standings, and rank 11th in the Eastern Conference, with a record of 5-5-0 (10 pts). The Rangers enter the contest having defeated the New York Islanders, 4-1, on Thursday at Madison Square Garden, and are now 4-2-0 in their last six games. The Blueshirts are 4-1-0 in their last five games at Madison Square Garden. The Lightning enter the contest with a 6-4-0 (12 pts) record to rank third in the Eastern Conference, and have lost their last three contests. Following tonight’s contest, the Rangers will face-off against the Boston Bruins on Tuesday, Feb. 12, at TD Garden (7:30 p.m.), in an Original Six matchup.
RANGERS vs. LIGHTNING:
- All-Time: 40-29-5-7 overall (22-13-2-4 at home; 18-16-3-3 on the road)
- 2013: Tomorrow is the second of three meetings this season, and the first of two meetings at Madison Square Garden. The Rangers are 1-0-0 overall, following a 3-2 win at Tampa Bay on Feb. 2. Carl Hagelin, Rick Nash and Derek Stepan each tallied a goal in the contest, while Martin Biron made 30 saves in the win.
- Last Season: New York was 2-0-2 overall (1-0-1 mark at home; 1-0-1 mark on the road). Three of their four meetings were decided in extra time, including one contest that required the shootout. The team who tallied the game’s first goal was winless in the series, posting a combined record of 0-1-3. The Rangers’ power play was 3-13 (23.1%) in the season series, while their penalty kill was 10-11 (90.9%) with one shorthanded goal. Derek Stepan registered a series-leading, six points, including a team-high, four assists in four games. Ryan Callahan led all skaters with two power play goals, while Ryan McDonagh and Michael Del Zotto tied for the series lead among defensemen with three assists/points apiece.
- Seven of the last eight meetings between the Rangers and Lightning have been decided by one goal, including five that required extra time and two that went into the shootout
- The Rangers have registered a point in 14 of their last 17 games against the Lightning (10-3-4 over the span), dating back to a 2-1 win at Tampa Bay on Oct. 4, 2008
- Henrik Lundqvist has started 27 of the Rangers’ last 29 contests against Tampa Bay, posting a record of 14-7-6 with a 2.16 GAA, .923 Sv% and two shutouts over the span
- New York is tied for ninth in the NHL with a 4-2-0 (8 pts) record at home; Tampa Bay is tied for 23rd in the NHL with a 1-3-0 (2 pts) mark on the road
- The Rangers are 1-0-0 vs. the Southeast Division this season; the Lightning are 1-4-0 vs. the Atlantic Division this season
- New York lists four former Lightning on their roster: Steve Eminger (2008-09); Matt Gilroy (2011-12); Jeff Halpern (2007-08 – 2009-10); Brad Richards(2000-01 – 2007-08)
- Tampa Bay lists one former Ranger on their roster: Adam Hall (2006-07)
- Rangers’ Head Coach John Tortorella served as Lightning Head Coach from 2000-01 to 2007-08, posting a record of 239-222-36-38 in 535 games while guiding Tampa Bay to four consecutive Stanley Cup Playoff appearances, two Southeast Division Championships (2002-03, 2003-04) and the franchise’s only Stanley Cup Championship in 2003-04; Rangers’ Assistant Coach Mike Sullivan served as an assistant coach with the Lightning in 2007-08 and 2008-09.
INDIVIDUAL CAREER LEADERS vs. LIGHTNING:
Henrik Lundqvist —27 GP, 14-7-6, 2.16 GAA, 2 SO
Martin Biron —21 GP, 12-7-2-0, 2.64 GAA
Marian Gaborik — 16 GP, 8-8-16
Jeff Halpern — 40 GP, 9-13-22
Brad Richards —8 GP, 3-8-11
Michael Del Zotto — 8 GP, 0-6-6
Power Play: The Rangers tallied one goal in two power play attempts (3:35) on Thursday vs. the Islanders. New York ranks 28th overall (4-37, 10.8%) and 23rd at home (3-21, 14.3%). The Rangers are 1-4 (5:15) in five-on-three situations (last – 1/24 at PHI), and 0-0 (0:00) when four-on-three. Shorthanded goals allowed (0).
Penalty Killing: The Blueshirts held the Islanders scoreless in five attempts (10:00) on Thursday vs. the Islanders. New York ranks 16th overall (37-46, 80.4%) and 17th at home (25-31, 80.6%). The Rangers are 2-2 (3:12) in three-on-five situations (last –1/29 vs. PHI), and 2-2 (1:57) when three-on-four (last – 1/31 vs. PIT). Shorthanded goals for (1): 1/20 vs. PIT (Nash).
Four-on-Four: New York did not skate in a four-on-four situation on Thursday vs. the Islanders, and are now minus-1 in eight four-on-four situations (7:49) this season. Four-on-four goals for (1): 1/23 vs. BOS (Gaborik). Four-on-four goals allowed (2): 1/20 vs. PIT (Letang); 1/23 vs. BOS (Horton).
Rangers’ rookie J.T. Miller notched two goals while making his Madison Square Garden debut on Thursday in a 4-1 win against the New York Islanders. According to the Elias Sports Bureau, the last Ranger (rookie or otherwise) to tally multiple goals in his MSG debut was Chris Kontos in a 6-2 win against Detroit on Jan. 3, 1983. Miller (19 years, 330 days) is the youngest Ranger to tally multiple goals in a single game since Alex Kovalev posted a hat trick on Dec. 27, 1992, at the age of 19 years, 307 days.
The Rangers posted a record of 15-3-2 against the Southeast Division last season, out-scoring their opponents, 67-42, in those contests
The Rangers are undefeated when scoring the first goal this season, posting a record of 3-0-0 in those contests, compared to 2-5-0 when allowing the game’s first goal. The Blueshirts have posted a 3-0-0 mark when leading after the first and second periods.
The Blueshirts have posted a record of 3-1-0 when out-shooting their opponents, which is tied for fifth in the NHL. The Rangers are 2-4-0 when being out-shot by their opponent.
A BROADWAY HIT
The Rangers rank third in the league in hits (296) this season. Brian Boyle leads the Rangers and is tied for seventh in the NHL with 33 hits, while Rangers captain Ryan Callahan is tied for 12th in the league in hits (31) despite missing three games to injury.
The Blueshirts have had eight players make their Rangers debut this season – Jeff Halpern, Rick Nash, Taylor Pyatt, Brandon Segal, Arron Asham, Benn Ferriero, Darroll Powe and J.T. Miller. Halpern, Nash (assist), Pyatt and Segal debuted in the season-opener on Jan. 19 at Boston, while Asham made his debut with the team on Jan. 20 against Pittsburgh. Ferriero debuted with the team on Jan. 26 vs. Toronto, following his trade from Pittsburgh in exchange for Chad Kolarik on Jan. 24. In addition, Chris Kreider made his NHL regular season debut on Jan. 19 after skating in 18 playoff contests with the Rangers last season, and Matt Gilroy made his season debut on Jan. 31 vs. PIT after previously skating in 127 career regular season games with the Rangers from 2009-10 to 2010-11. Darroll Powe and J.T. Miller both made their debut on Tuesday at New Jersey. Miller, who was also making his NHL debut, was originally selected by the Rangers as a first round choice, 15th overall, in the 2011 NHL Entry Draft. Powe was acquired from Minnesota, along with Nick Palmieri, in exchange for Mike Rupp on Monday.
THE HOT LIST:
Henrik Lundqvist — has held opponents to two goals or less in four of his last six games, posting a record of 3-3-0 with a 2.02 GGA and a .923 Sv% over the span
Marc Staal — three assists in the last three games
Brad Richards — enters the contest with a three-game assist streak (three assists over the span)
Marian Gaborik — has recorded eight points (six goals, two assists) in the last six home games.
MILESTONES IN SIGHT:
Michael Del Zotto — 5 points from 100th NHL career
Steve Eminger — 4 points from 100th NHL career
Matt Gilroy — 2 games from 200th NHL career
MILESTONES RECENTLY ACHIEVED:
Ryan Callahan — 200th career NHL point (1/29 vs. PHI)
J.T. Miller — 1st career NHL game (2/5 at NJD)
Chris Kreider — 1st career regular season NHL goal/point (2/5 at NJD)
J.T. Miller — 1st career NHL goal/point (2/7 vs. NYI)
Chris Kreider — 1st career regular season NHL assist (2/7 vs. NYI)
Michael Sauer (concussion, 12/5/11) — 10
Dan Girardi (injured, 2/2) — 2
Total Man-Games Lost: 21
Feb. 4 — Acquired forwards Darroll Powe and Nick Palmieri from Minnesota for forward Mike Rupp
Feb. 4 — Recalled forwards J.T. Miller and Brandon Mashinter from Connecticut (AHL)
Feb. 4 — Assigned forward Benn Ferriero to Connecticut (AHL)
Feb. 5 — Assigned forward Brandon Mashinter to Connecticut (AHL)