NHL Preview from The Sports Network|
Tuesday, April 29th
(All times Eastern)
New York Rangers (3-2) at Philadelphia Flyers (2-3), 7:30 p.m.
(SportsNetwork.com) - The New York Rangers hope to punch their ticket to the
second round when they visit the Philadelphia Flyers on Tuesday for a Game 6
battle at Wells Fargo Center.
In order to close out this best-of-seven set, however, the Rangers will have
to become the first team to win consecutive games in this series. Through five
meetings so far, New York has won the odd-numbered contests with the Flyers
posting victories in Games 2 and 4.
The Flyers hope to extend the series by earning a win in their final home test
of this Eastern Conference quarterfinal matchup. If Philadelphia can pick up a
win tonight, the clubs will have a short turnaround for Game 7, which is
scheduled for Wednesday night in New York. After losing Sunday afternoon in
Manhattan, Philadelphia has lost 10 of its last 11 visits to Madison Square
The Rangers jumped out to a 3-0 lead over the Flyers in Sunday's Game 5 at
Madison Square Garden and then held on for a 4-2 decision.
Marc Staal opened the scoring with 8:07 left in the first stanza, while Brad
Richards and Dominic Moore each netted second-period goals to hand New York a
3-0 cushion. Moore added an assist on Brian Boyle's empty-net score in the
final seconds that sealed the victory and put the Flyers on the brink of
"It's frustrating," Flyers forward Scott Hartnell said of the loss. "You're
always playing catch-up. You make it a lot harder on yourself. You're skating
that much harder to get on pucks, to create turnovers, to get chances, instead
of playing comfortable. It's a lot easier when you've got a lead."
Henrik Lundqvist came up with 24 saves for New York, which bounced back from a
2-1 Game 4 loss in which Flyers netminder Steve Mason turned in a stellar 37-
"I thought we played a really good game, good energy," said Lundqvist.
"Looking back at the game in Philly (on Friday), we did a lot of good things
as well. The difference is today we scored a couple goals and that brings a
lot of confidence to the group. It's easy to play patient and not overdo a lot
Mason managed just 18 stops on Sunday and Philadelphia wasn't able to maintain
its momentum from Friday's win despite captain Claude Giroux and veteran
Vincent Lecavalier recording their first goals of the these playoffs.
"This series is definitely not over," Mason said. "We're looking forward to
going home and having a big game there and bringing it back here for Game 7."
The Flyers are 7-10 all-time in Game 6 when trailing 3-2, but New York is 13-2
in playoff series in which it held a lead of three games to two. The Rangers,
however, also have lost 11 straight playoff games when holding a series lead.
Philadelphia defenseman Hal Gill saw his first action of the 2014 postseason
Sunday, filling in for the injured Nicklas Grossman, who hurt his right knee
in Game 4. Gill was a minus-2 in just over 12 minutes of ice time in Game 5.
Grossmann is expected to miss Game 6, but Erik Gustafsson could fill in for
the injured blueliner on Tuesday instead of Gill. The 25-year-old Gustafsson
had two goals and eight assists in 31 games this season and has one goal and
one assist over seven career playoff tilts.
J.T. Miller, New York's first-round pick in the 2011 draft, made his playoff
debut on Sunday. The 21-year-old forward contributed a point to the winning
Including this playoff series, which is the first postseason meeting between
New York and Philadelphia since 1997, the Rangers have lost four of their last
five games at Wells Fargo Center.
04/29 15:18:50 ET