The New York Rangers look to break a two game losing streak as they host the St. Louis Blues at Madison Square Garden. It will be Igor Shesterkin in net for New York as they take on a Blues team that has won six of their last seven games with the only loss in overtime.
After a slow start when they found themselves with a 12-8-4 record at the beginning of December, the Blues have gone 20-6-2, solidifying their grip on second place in the Central Division. Trailing first place Colorado by 14 points, they are playing to hold onto second place with Minnesota five points behind.
This season, the Rangers haven’t lost more than two consecutive games in regulation and their only three game losing streak included two overtime losses.
That’s a pretty solid record and puts the Blueshirts ahead of some of the elite teams in the East. They join Tampa who has not lost more than one game in a row in regulation this season though they have had two three-game losing streaks including shootout losses. Boston has not lost more than two in a row. All of the other playoff bound teams have had three-game losing streaks, more than the Blueshirts.
Igor Shesterkin will be back in net for New York and will be opposing his buddy, Pavel Buchnevich who told reporters that he definitely wants to score against him. This will be the first time that Shesterkin will face St. Louis.
The last time these two teams met was on March 3, 2020. 10 Blues players are left from that game with nine Rangers playing tonight. Of course, Buchnevich played for the Rangers and Sammy Blais was in the Blues lineup.
No matter what the outcome, these teams will have a rematch in St. Louis in eight days.
Projected starting lineups
Filip Chytil will be back centering the third line after sitting out two games as a healthy scratch. The early word is that Morgan Barron will be the player who sits. Patrick Nemeth is also back after the birth of his son last week. Zac Jones was returned to Hartford to get some playing time.
NEW YORK RANGERS
20 Kreider– 93 Zibanejad –13 Lafrenière
10 Panarin– 16 Strome – 29 Hunt
14 McKegg – 72 Chytil – 15 Gauthier
21 Goodrow– 17 Rooney – 75 Reaves
55 Lindgren – 23 Fox
79 Miller – 8 Trouba
12 Nemeth – 45 Schneider
ST. LOUIS BLUES
20 Brandon Saad – 90 Ryan O’Reilly – 57 David Perron
89 Pavel Buchnevich – 18 Robert Thomas – 91 Vladimir Tarasenko
|49 Ivan Barbashev – 10- Brayden Schenn – 25 Jordan Kyrou
54 Dakota Joshua – 21 Tyler Bozak – 70 Oskar Sundqvist
47 Torey Krug – 72 Justin Faulk
77 Niko Mikkola – 55 Colton Parayko
46 Jake Walman – 41 Robert Bortuzzo
35 Ville Husso
50 Jordan Binnington
Ville Husso is expected to get the start in goal for St.Louis. The 26-year old Finn is in his second season in the NHL and has stepped up when top goalie Jordan Binnington struggled. Husso has a .935 save percentage and 2.03 goals against average. It’s his first start against the Rangers.
How to watch and the live conversation
The Rangers may be setting a new record tonight as this is their third nationally televised game in the last four. The first two were on ESPN and ABC with tonight’s game on TNT. It’s not a record that Ranger fans are exactly thrilled about.
The game will start at 7:30pm and with the telecast on TNT there be no live stream on ESPN+. TNT is available as a live stream on Hulu (for a fee). The radiocast will be on ESPN 98.7 FM.
The Blue Line Station’s live conversation is active now and you can join in with your fellow Ranger fans and talk about the game, the team, trade possiblities and of course, Pavel Buchnevich.
Join the chat in the comments section below.