NHL Preview from The Sports Network
Tuesday, January 29th (All times Eastern)
Philadelphia Flyers (2-4-0) at New York Rangers (2-3-0), 7 p.m.
(Sports Network) - The New York Rangers will try to win consecutive games for the first time this season when they host the rival Philadelphia Flyers in Tuesday's battle at Madison Square Garden.
This game is a rematch of Thursday's battle in Philadelphia, which the Flyers won in regulation by a 2-1 score. However, New York was able to follow that loss with Saturday's 5-2 win against visiting Toronto and the Blueshirts hope to make it two in a row on Tuesday.
Marian Gaborik had two goals and two assists to help the Rangers down the Maple Leafs over the weekend. Gaborik provided the go-ahead score in the third period, as New York erased a 2-0 first-period deficit en route to the win.
Marc Staal and Brad Richards each posted a goal and an assist for the Rangers, who won for just the second time in five games this season. Henrik Lundqvist made 15 saves in the win.
Toronto had a one-goal lead heading into the third, but Staal tied the game at the 7:36 mark. The Rangers then went on top with 7:03 to play as a slap shot from Staal at the left point was redirected into the net by Gaborik for a 3-2 lead. Michael Del Zotto added insurance with 2:52 remaining and Gaborik capped the scoring with an empty-netter.
"You learn about team character and what you've got in the room," said Rangers center Brian Boyle on the team's third-period comeback. "I think that was the closest we've come to what we feel is our identity."
New York was in the news Monday for backing out of a contract agreement with Jason Arnott due to concerns about the veteran center's health. Arnott and the Rangers had come to terms on a one-year, $1.6 million contract on Saturday pending a physical, but reports said the team will not proceed in negotiations with the 38-year-old after reviewing his medical records.
The 18-year veteran did play in 72 games with the St. Louis Blues a season ago, recording 17 goals and 17 assists, but underwent arthroscopic knee surgery during the offseason.
The Rangers are 2-1-0 on home ice in the early going and they'll close a three-game homestand Thursday against Pittsburgh.
The Flyers, meanwhile, are playing the third segment of a four-game road trip on Monday and Philly hopes to rebound from a rough loss in Tampa on Sunday night.
One night after posting a 7-1 road win over the Florida Panthers, the Flyers were on the wrong end of a 5-1 setback against the Lightning. Martin St. Louis had four assists and Teddy Purcell added a goal and two assists to lead Tampa Bay to the rout.
"We can't use that as an excuse," Flyers forward Matt Read said. "Everyone's playing a lot of games in a short amount of time. When you're playing back to back, you've got to keep it simple and play smart hockey. We've got to learn how to play both nights and come to play for 60 minutes every game, every night."
Sean Couturier scored the lone goal of the game for the Flyers, while Michael Leighton gave up all five goals on 26 shots. It was Leighton's first start of the season and he'll return to his role backing up Ilya Bryzgalov at the start of Tuesday's game.
Prior to last week's win over the Rangers, the Flyers had lost eight straight in this series. New York is still riding a four-game winning streak on home ice against Philadelphia and has claimed six of the last eight encounters at MSG.
01/29 10:52:05 ET