New York Rangers prepare to face the Montreal Canadiens in Original Six Clash

Mar 9, 2023; Montreal, Quebec, CAN; New York Rangers players gather to celebrate the win against the
Mar 9, 2023; Montreal, Quebec, CAN; New York Rangers players gather to celebrate the win against the / David Kirouac-USA TODAY Sports

A comfortable win over the Chicago Blackhawks last time out saw the Rangers start to build momentum in the new year. But games come quickly and often in the NHL, so here we are waiting for the newest chapter of the Blueshirts season as they prepare to take on the Montreal Canadiens at the Bell Centre. This is going to be another tricky opponent, but this ultimately needs to result in two points for the Rangers.

This is always a game to focus on Alexis Lafreniere specifically. The Quebecois winger will always look to make quite the impression against his home town team, and the Rangers have needed his line to be red hot to achieve their position in the standings. With that in mind, the Panarin - Trocheck - Lafreniere line will need to continue to produce at the rate it has been if the Rangers want to get two points out of a game that could cause them some problems.

If you want to get into the conversation around former players between the two teams, look no further than Erik Gustafsson and Tyler Pitlick, who were both Canadiens a long time ago. With Pitlick not playing tonight, the Rangers will instead be icing Brennan Othmann once again, after he had quite a promising NHL debut against the Blackhawks. If this is going to be another two points in the standings, they will need the kid to play well.

Projected Lineups

New York Rangers

Chris Kreider - Mika Zibanejad - Blake Wheeler
Artemi Panarin - Vincent Trocheck - Alexis Lafreniere
Brennan Othmann - Nick Bonino - Jonny Brodzinski
Will Cuylle - Barclay Goodrow - Jimmy Vesey
Ryan Lindgren - Adam Fox
K'Andre Miller - Jacob Trouba
Erik Gustafsson - Braden Schneider
Jonathan Quick
Igor Shesterkin

Montreal Canadiens

Cole Caufield - Nick Suzuki - Juraj Slafkovsky
Josh Anderson - Sean Monahan - Jesse Ylonen
Joel Armia - Jake Evans - Brendan Gallagher
Emil Heineman - Mitchell Stephens - Michael Pazzetta
Mike Matheon - David Savard
Kaiden Guhle - Justin Barron
Jayden Struble - Jordan Harris
Sam Montembault
Jake Allen

Puck Drop

This is a 7 p.m puck drop from Quebec. New York will be trying to rebuild their winning streak after a disappointing loss to Carolina saw their success at the end of the 2023 calendar year thwarted by a divisional rival. Another rebuilding team is a good answer to any uncertainties from the fanbase of the Blueshirts. We know this team will be good when it is playing well, so getting back to the game they play so well against rebuilding squads will always be more favorable than struggling against contenders.