NHL Preview from The Sports Network|
Thursday, April 3rd
(All times Eastern)
New York Rangers (43-30-4) at Colorado Avalanche (48-21-6), 9 p.m.
(SportsNetwork.com) - The New York Rangers were having some success on the ice
even while new acquisition Martin St. Louis struggled to contribute
With St. Louis having finally scored his first goal with the Blueshirts, they
could become even more dangerous.
St. Louis and the Rangers will try to build off their latest victory as they
conclude a four-game road trip on Thursday night versus the Colorado
New York was looking to give a jolt to its offense when it dealt captain Ryan
Callahan to the Tampa Bay Lightning before last month's trade deadline for St.
There was a lengthy adjustment period for the 38-year-old veteran, who notched
just three assists in his first 14 games with New York. He was also without a
point in each of his previous six contests before scoring shorthanded in
Tuesday's 3-1 win over the Vancouver Canucks.
St. Louis finished off a 2-on-1 rush with Rick Nash for a third-period
insurance tally, his 30th goal of the season in total. He also netted New
York's seventh short-handed goal in its past 15 games.
Daniel Carcillo and Benoit Pouliot also scored for the Rangers, who have won
two straight and seven of eight. Henrik Lundqvist came up with 34 saves.
"I just feel that this group here, the type of players we have, they're
willing to do everything it takes to win games," said New York head coach
Alain Vigneault, who returned to Vancouver for the first time since being
fired by the Canucks this past offseason.
The Rangers picked up their club-record 25th road win of the season and lead
the Philadelphia Flyers by three points for second place in the Metropolitan
Division. The Flyers do have two games in hand and host the Columbus Blue
Jackets on Thursday.
New York, meanwhile, is likely to be without star defenseman Ryan McDonagh
tonight due to a bruised left shoulder suffered versus Vancouver. McDonagh has
14 goals and 43 points in 77 games this season.
Fellow blueliner John Moore could be ready to return from a six-game absence
caused by a concussion.
The Rangers snapped a three-game skid to the Avalanche with a 3-1 victory in
New York on Feb. 4. They have lost six of their last seven in Colorado
Callahan scored twice in the win over the Rangers, while Lundqvist made 27
saves to improve to 2-3-1 lifetime versus Colorado with a 2.54 goals against
Gabriel Landeskog had the lone goal versus New York for Colorado, while Semyon
Varlamov made 38 saves. He fell to 2-2-0 with a 3.75 GAA versus the Rangers.
Landeskog keyed an Avalanche rally on Tuesday, scoring twice in a 3-2 overtime
victory against the Blue Jackets.
All three of Colorado's goals deflected off Columbus players. Landeskog
recorded the tying goal with 4:57 to play in regulation, then scored with 33
ticks on the clock in overtime as his intended pass for Nathan MacKinnon hit
off Blue Jackets defenseman Jack Johnson.
Brad Malone scored Colorado's first goal of the game in the third period with
his team down 2-0, sending a centering pass from behind the net that deflected
Varlamov made 24 saves for the Avs, who have won four in a row and were
playing their first game since losing forward Matt Duchene for at least the
rest of the regular season due to a knee injury.
"[Turnovers] are part of the game, but we bounced back and showed a lot of
character," Avs head coach Patrick Roy said. "We were resilient. We came back
in the third, working even harder."
With 102 points, Colorado is three ahead of the Chicago Blackhawks for second
place in the Central Division with a game in hand. The Blackhawks also are in
action on Thursday as they host the Minnesota Wild.
04/03 10:53:31 ET