After last night’s huge win over Tampa, the question is what the New York Rangers can do for an encore. They travel to Raleigh to take on the Carolina Hurricanes, a team in the middle of a rare rough patch. It’s Alexandar Georgiev’s turn to be a hero for the Blueshirts, though it is possible that this could be his last game in a Rangers uniform.
The only deadline trade of note had defenseman Mark Giordano headed to Toronto, though details on what the Kraken will be getting in return have not been revealed. Giordano had been mentioned as a potential Rangers target to bolster the defense.
The Hurricanes have lost three games in a row for only the second time this season, though the last loss was in a shootout to the Washington Capitals. They will be buoyed by the return of Tony DeAngelo from Injured Reserve, though Nino Niedereitter will be sitting out a one game suspension. Out with injuries are Jordan Martinook and Jake Gardiner.
The Hurricanes are led by goalie Frederik Andersen who is challenging Igor Shesterkin for the Vezina Trophy. There are five former Rangers in the lineup with a sixth (Antti Raanta) watching from the bench.
This is another big test for the Rangers. A win and this road trip will be an incredible success. One point would be nice, but even a loss could be accepted if they play well. With this team, anything is possible.
Oh yes, if the Hurricanes lose it will be four in a row. Remember that the most the Rangers have lost is two in a row in regulation and three in a row once with two games going to overtime.
The last game
The Rangers will be looking for revenge for the 6-3 beating they absorbed from the Hurricanes in January. Tony DeAngelo was the first star of that game with a goal and two assists. The hope has to be that he will be rusty after missing a month with a midsection injury.
Alexandar Georgiev was in goal for the Blueshirts as he made his first start in 11 days. This time, inactivity is not an excuse as he has appeared in three of the Rangers’ last six games. He will have to be at his best.
While the result of that game was disappointing, the Rangers had numerous opportunities to make it close. Artemi Panarin couldn’t elevate a puck in the second period and Braden Schneider hit a post in the third. It’s a different game if those pucks went in.
Projected starting lineups
The Rangers won’t be messing with success, going with the same lineup from the Tampa game.
NEW YORK RANGERS
20 Kreider– 93 Zibanejad –13 Lafrenière
10 Panarin– 16 Strome – 77 Vatrano
21 Goodrow – 72 Chytil – 76 Brodzinski
29 Hunt– 14 McKegg – 75 Reaves
55 Lindgren– 23 Fox
79 Miller – 8 Trouba
12 Nemeth – 45 Schneider
24 Seth Jarvis– 20 Sebastian Aho – 86 Teuvo Teravainen
37 Andrei Svechnikov – 16 Vincent Trocheck –88 Martin Necas
78 Steven Lorentz – 11 Jordan Staal – 71 Jesper Fast
82 Jesperi Kotkaniemi – 18 Derek Stepan
74 Jaccob Slavin – 77 Tony DeAngelo
76 Brady Skjei – 22 Brett Pesce
28 Ian Cole – 25 Ethan Bear
7 Brendan Smith
31 Frederik Andersen
32 Antti Raanta
The Hurricanes are taking a page from Gerard Gallant’s book, dressing 11 forwards and seven defensemen. Of course, their seventh blueliner is Brendan Smith who can also play forward as all Ranger fans know. He just returned from suffering a fractured skull when hit in the head by a puck a month ago. Look for Smith to play physically as he laid out Tom Wilson and Nic Dowd with big hits on Friday night.
How to watch and the live conversation
The game starts early, at 6pm. The telecast will be on MSG+ with the national live stream on ESPN+.
The Blue Line Station live conversation is active and you can share your thoughts about this amazing team with your fellow Ranger fans. These games have been a treat to watch and there has been a lot to talk about. Who knows which new faces will be on the team Tuesday night and which familiar faces will be gone?
Join the conversation in the comments section below.