Pre-game notes courtesy of the NYR:
NEW YORK RANGERS at FLORIDA PANTHERS
Wednesday, Nov. 27, 7:30 p.m. ET
BB&T Center – Sunrise, FL
Rangers: 12-12-0 (24 pts)
Panthers: 7-13-5 (19 pts)
The Rangers will face-off against the Florida Panthers at BB&T Center (7:30 p.m. — TV: MSG Network; Radio: ESPN 98.7), in the first of three games in a four-day span. The Blueshirts currently rank third in the Metropolitan Division standings, and eighth in the Eastern Conference, with a record of 12-12-0 (24 pts). The Rangers enter the contest having been defeated by the Tampa Bay Lightning, 5-0, on Monday at Tampa, to end their road winning streak at six games. The Blueshirts are tied for third in the conference, and eighth in the NHL, in ROW (12). The Panthers enter the contest with a 7-13-5 (19 pts) record to rank 15th in the Eastern Conference, and have points in four of their last five games (3-1-1). Following the contest, the Rangers will return to action when they face-off against the Boston Bruins on Friday, Nov. 29, at TD Bank Garden (1:00 p.m.), to conclude their five-game road trip.
RANGERS vs. PANTHERS:
All-Time: 43-28-6-4 overall (23-14-4-0 at home; 20-13-2-4 on the road)
2013-14: Tonight is the second of three meetings this season, and the first of two meetings at BB&T Center. New York is 1-0-0 (1-0-0 at home; 0-0-0 on the road), following a 4-3 win on Nov. 10 at Madison Square Garden. The Rangers’ power play was 1-3 (33.3%) in the contest. Brad Richards, Derek Dorsett, J.T. Miller, and Mats Zuccarello each tallied a goal. Richards added an assist for a team-high, two points in the contest. Henrik Lundqvist made 24 saves in the win.
Last Season: New York was 1-2-0 overall (1-1-0 at home; 0-1-0 on the road). The Rangers out-scored the Panthers, 9-7, including a 6-3 advantage in the third period, and out-shot Florida, 113-75, in the series. The Blueshirts’ power play was 2-10 (20.0%) in three games. Rick Nash led all skaters with four points, and tied Ryan Callahan for the series lead with three assists apiece. Derick Brassard notched a series-high, three goals, in two contests. Henrik Lundqvist was 1-2-0 with a 1.69 GAA and .932 Sv%.
The Rangers have won 10 of their last 15 games against the Panthers, having out-scored Florida, 44-26, over the span
New York is 8-7-0 on the road; Florida is 4-4-3 at home
New York is 4-3-0 vs. Atlantic Division opponents; Florida is 2-2-1 vs. Metropolitan Division opponents
New York lists one former Panther on its roster: Dominic Moore (2009-10)
Florida lists three former Rangers on its roster: Matt Gilroy (2009-10 – 2010-11; 2012-13); Scott Gomez (2007-08 – 2008-09); Mike Mottau (2000-01 – 2001-02)
INDIVIDUAL CAREER LEADERS vs. PANTHERS: Henrik Lundqvist – 26 GP, 16-9-1, 5 SO, 1.78 GAA; Brad Richards – 54 GP, 18-31-49; Benoit Pouliot – 18 GP, 7-7-14; Ryan Callahan – 20 GP, 3-8-11; Michael Del Zotto – 15 GP, 1-6-7.
The Rangers are tied for first in the league with three goals in 5-on-3 situations
The Blueshirts’ penalty kill has held opponents scoreless in six of the last seven games (18-19, 94.7% over the span)
Power Play: The Rangers were 0-6 (10:58) on Monday at Tampa Bay. New York ranks 20th in the NHL overall (14-82, 17.1%), and seventh on the road (10-47, 21.3%). The Rangers are 3-10 (4:24) in five-on-three situations (last – 11/25 at TBL), and 0-1 (0:30) when four-on-three (last – 10/12 at STL). Shorthanded goals allowed (3): 10/8 at SJS (Vlasic); 10/24 at PHI (Read); 11/19 vs. BOS (Paille).
Penalty Killing: The Blueshirts were 3-3 (6:00) on Tuesday at Tampa Bay. New York ranks seventh in the NHL overall (69-81, 85.2%), and 10th on the road (45-53, 84.9%). The Rangers are 2-3 (2:49) in three-on-five situations (last – 11/4 vs. ANA), and 2-3 (0:55) when three-on-four (last – 11/21 at DAL). Shorthanded goals for (1): 10/7 at LAK (McDonagh).
Four-on-Four: New York did not skate in a four-on-four situation on Tuesday at Tampa Bay, and are now -1 in 24 four-on-four situations (36:09) this season. Four-on-four goals for (2): 10/16 at WSH (J. Moore); 10/26 at DET (Brassard). Four-on-four goals allowed (3): 10/3 at PHX (Vrbata); 10/7 at LAK (Muzzin); 10/12 at STL (Backes).
ROAD WARRIORS: The Rangers lead the Eastern Conference and are tied for first in the NHL with eight road wins this season. The Blueshirts posted a six-game winning streak on the road from Oct. 26 at Detroit to Nov. 23 at Nashville, out-scoring their opponents, 16-8, including two shutouts over the span. The streak ended one win shy of the longest road winning streak in franchise history, and was the longest for the Blueshirts since the 1993-94 season (Oct. 30 – Nov. 24). It is also tied as the longest road winning streak in the league this season. The Rangers posted victories in Detroit and Montreal during their six-game road winning streak, marking the first time the team has won in both cities in the same season since 1991-92.
STARTING FRESH: The Rangers have posted a 1.78 goals against average since returning from their season-opening five-game west coast road trip, compared to a 5.00 goals against average prior to their Oct. 16 game at Washington. According to the Elias Sports Bureau, the Rangers’ 1.78 goals against average since Oct. 16 leads the NHL over the span. The Blueshirts are currently tied for 12th overall with a 2.46 goals against average this season.
SHUTTING THE DOOR: The Rangers have held opponents to two or fewer goals in 14 of the last 17 games, and 15 of the last 19. New York has allowed 30 goals over the last 17 games (1.76 goals against per game), and 34 goals in the last 19 games (1.79 goals against per game). The Blueshirts are tied for first in the NHL with four shutouts and have held opponents to two or fewer goals in 16 games this season, which is tied for second in the league.
FAST START: The Rangers have posted a record of 11-1-0 when tallying the game’s first goal this season, which is tied for third in the NHL (.917 winning percentage). The Blueshirts have opened the game’s scoring in two of the last three contests.
STANDING TAL-BOT: Cam Talbot posted a 17-save shutout in a 2-0 win on Saturday at Nashville, to extend his personal winning streak to five games and register his second consecutive shutout, prior to his relief appearance on Monday at Tampa Bay. He has posted a 1.29 GAA, .948 Sv%, and two shutouts during his five-game winning streak, and is the first Rangers’ goaltender to win five straight in their first year since Dan Blackburn in 2001-02 (Mar. 30-Apr. 8, 2002). Signed by the Rangers as an undrafted free agent on Mar. 30, 2010, Talbot is now 5-1-0 with a 1.41 GAA, .944 Sv%, and two shutouts in seven career NHL appearances. He has allowed just nine goals in his seven games, and has yet to surrender more than two goals in a contest. He posted a shutout streak of 165:27 from 13:38 of the second period on Nov. 7 at Columbus to 18:59 of the third period on Nov. 25 at Tampa Bay (59 consecutive saves).
From the Elias Sports Bureau:
He is the third goaltender in franchise history to post two shutouts in his first six career starts, and the first to do so since the Rangers’ inaugural season, when both Lorne Chabot and Hal Winkler accomplished the feat during the 1926-27 season.
He is the first goaltender in franchise history, and the first in the NHL since Gerry McNeil (Montreal) in 1947, to hold opponents to two or fewer goals in each of his first six NHL starts.
He is only the second Rangers goaltender in the last 40 years to post consecutive shutouts on the road in one season. The other was Steve Valiquette during the 2007-08 season (Jan. 31 and Feb. 9, both in Philadelphia).
CLOSING TIME: The Blueshirts have registered a point in 100 consecutive regular season games when leading after the second period, dating back to the 2009-10 season, posting a record of 94-0-6 over the span. The Rangers’ last regulation loss in a game when entering the third with the lead was Feb. 4, 2010 (6-5 loss vs. WSH). New York is 8-0-0 when leading after the second period this season, and have held opponents to a league-best, 12 goals against in the final frame.
Taylor Pyatt (concussion – 11/7, out indefinitely) – 8
Total Man-Games Lost: 53
Nov. 26 – Assigned forward J.T. Miller to Hartford (AHL)
Photo by Getty Images.