Game Preview: New York Rangers vs. Anaheim Ducks

March 22, 2015

 

NEW YORK RANGERS vs. ANAHEIM DUCKS

Sunday, Mar. 22, 2015, 7:30 p.m. ET

Madison Square Garden – New York, NY

Ducks: 46-20-7 (99 pts)

Rangers: 45-18-7 (97 pts)

 

*See attached document for more information on all Rangers players (Note: all player statistics and rankings are through games completed on Mar. 20).

 

TONIGHT'S GAME

The Rangers play their 71st game of the 2014-15 season and conclude a back-to-back set tonight, Mar. 22, against the Anaheim Ducks at Madison Square Garden (7:30 p.m. ET — TV: NBCSN; Radio: ESPN 98.7 FM). New York has earned at least one point in 18 of its last 20 games (15-3-2), including eight of its last nine games (7-1-1). The Blueshirts have won 15 of their last 19 contests (15-2-2), including 11 of the last 14 games (11-2-1) and six of the last seven games (6-1-0). The Rangers have also recorded at least one point in 21 of their last 24 games (18-3-3). The Blueshirts have won 38 of their last 52 games (38-11-3), including 36 of their last 49 games (36-10-3) and 34 of their last 45 contests (34-8-3). The Rangers have earned at least one point in 51 of their last 66 games (44-15-7), including 44 of their last 56 games (39-12-5). The Rangers have posted a 45-18-7 record this season (97 pts), following a 3-2 shootout win last night against the Carolina Hurricanes in Carolina. The Ducks enter the contest with a 46-20-7 record this season (99 pts), following a 3-2 overtime win against the Colorado Avalanche on Friday, Mar. 20 in Anaheim.

 

RANGERS PRACTICE SCHEDULE

The Rangers will not have a morning skate prior to tonight’s contest. Rangers Head Coach Alain Vigneault will be available to the media at 5:30 p.m. in the fifth floor press conference room at Madison Square Garden.

*Schedule and availability subject to change

 

RANGERS VS. DUCKS

  • All-Time: 11-15-1-1 record (6-7-1-0 at home, 5-8-0-1 on the road)
  • 2014-15: Tonight's game is the second and final meeting between the Rangers and Ducks this season, and the only meeting between the two teams at MSG. The Rangers have posted a 1-0-0 record (0-0-0 at home, 1-0-0 on the road) against the Ducks, following a 4-1 win on Jan. 7 in Anaheim. Four different Rangers tallied a goal and eight different Blueshirts recorded a point in the contest. J.T. Miller registered two assists/points in the game.
  • New York has earned at least one point in nine of its last 14 games against Anaheim, dating back to Nov. 19, 2002 (8-5-0-1).
  • The Rangers have won three of their last four home games against the Ducks (3-1-0) and have allowed two goals or fewer in each of the four contests (five goals allowed over the span).

 

RANGERS-DUCKS CONNECTIONS

  • Matt Hunwick and Andrew Cogliano were teammates at the University of Michigan for two seasons (2005-06 - 2006-07).
  • Alain Vigneault was Ryan Kesler's head coach during his entire tenure in Vancouver (2006-07 - 2012-13).
  • Rick Nash and Corey Perry were teammates in junior hockey with the London Knights (OHL) for one season (2001-02). Nash and Perry also helped Team Canada capture two gold medals (2010 in Vancouver and 2014 in Sochi).
  • J.T. Miller and Richard Rakell were teammates in junior hockey with the Plymouth Whalers (OHL) for one season (2011-12).

 

INDIVIDUAL CAREER STATISTICS VS. DUCKS

  • Rick Nash - 35 GP, 19-16-35 - Nash enters the contest with a six-game point streak against the Ducks (five goals, two assists). Nash has also tallied a point in 13 of his last 14 contests against Anaheim, registering 18 points (12 goals, six assists) over the span.
  • Keith Yandle - 36 GP, 8-19-27 - Yandle has recorded a point in 23 of 36 career games against Anaheim. He has registered 18 points (six goals, 12 points) in his last 21 contests against the Ducks.
  • Derick Brassard - 19 GP, 10-3-13 - Brassard has tallied more career goals against the Ducks than against any other NHL opponent. He has recorded six goals/points in his last eight games against Anaheim, and he has notched eight points (seven goals, one assist) in his last 10 games against the Ducks.

 

SPECIAL TEAMS

  • New York has posted a 13-1-1 record when outscoring its opponent on special teams in 2014-15

 

Power Play:

  • The Rangers were 0-for-2 (3:37) on the power play last night at Carolina

 

Penalty Kill:

  • The Rangers were 1-for-2 (3:29) on the penalty kill last night at Carolina
  • The Blueshirts rank eighth in the NHL on the penalty kill this season (83.4%; 171-for-205)
  • New York is tied for fourth in the NHL - and is tied for first in the Eastern Conference - in SHG (eight) this season despite playing the seventh-fewest minutes shorthanded of any NHL team (348:59). The Rangers are tied for second in the NHL in SHG (18) since 2013-14.
  • The Rangers are 19-for-21 (90.5%) on the penalty kill over the last seven games and are 26-for-29 (89.7%) on the penalty kill over the last 10 contests. The Blueshirts have not allowed a power play goal in 13 of the last 18 games (45-for-51; 88.2%) and they are 107-for-125 (85.6%) on the penalty kill over the last 46 games.

 

UPCOMING MILESTONES

  • Marc Staal - 3 assists away from 100 in his NHL career
  • Dan Girardi - 4 points away from 200 in his NHL career

 

100-POINT CLUB

The Rangers, who have earned 97 points in their first 70 games this season, are three points away from reaching the 100-point plateau for the eighth time in franchise history.

 

FEWEST GAMES IT HAS TAKEN TO EARN 100 POINTS IN ONE SEASON IN FRANCHISE HISTORY

 

SEASON

# OF GAMES

1971-72

67

1970-71

73

1972-73

73

2011-12

75

1991-92

76

1993-94

77

2005-06

77

 

TOP OF THE HEAP

The Rangers are the only team to rank in the top five in the NHL in both goals per game and goals against per game in 2014-15. The Blueshirts rank in the top five in the NHL in the following categories: point percentage (first - .693), goal differential (first - plus-49), regulation/OT wins (second - 41), goals against per game (second - 2.23), points (third - 97), wins (tied for third - 45), and goals per game (fifth - 2.94). The Blueshirts also have the fewest regulation losses (18) and fewest overall losses (regulation + overtime/shootout; 25) in the NHL this season.

 

WINNING WAYS

The Rangers earned their 45th win of the season last night at Carolina. The Blueshirts have won 45 games in each of the last two seasons and they reached the 45-win plateau for the eighth time in franchise history. New York has won 45 or more games in at least two straight seasons for the second time in franchise history (the Rangers won at least 45 games in three consecutive seasons from 1970-71 – 1972-73). The Blueshirts reached the 45-win plateau in 70 games, which is the second-fewest contests it has taken a Rangers team to earn 45 wins in franchise history (1971-72 - 67 games).

 

TWO GOOD

New York has allowed two goals or fewer in nine consecutive games and in 38 of 70 games in 2014-15. The Rangers have posted a 34-2-2 record when allowing two or fewer goals in a contest this season.

 

HOME COOKING

New York has won five of its last six home games (5-1-0) and has earned at least one point in 10 of its last 11 home games (8-1-2 record). The Blueshirts have won 14 of their last 19 home contests (14-3-2) and 17 of their last 23 home games (17-4-2). The Rangers have also earned at least one point in 27 of their last 33 home games, dating back to Oct. 16 (22-6-5 over the span).

 

RIGHT BACK AT IT

The Rangers have posted an 8-2-1 record in the second half of back-to-back games this season, including an 8-0-1 record in the second half of their last nine back-to-back sets.

 

MAKING NOISE ON THE WESTERN FRONT

The Blueshirts have earned at least one point in eight of their last nine games against Western Conference opponents (6-1-2) and have posted a 12-3-2 record in their last 17 games against teams in the Western Conference. The Rangers have posted a 15-4-5 record against Western Conference opponents this season.

 

A STAR ON BROADWAY

Cam Talbot is the first Ranger who has been named one of the NHL's Three Stars of the Week in back-to-back weeks since the NHL began awarding three stars for every week in the 2006-07 season. He has allowed two goals or fewer in each of his last eight appearances. Talbot has posted a 5-1-0 record, along with a 0.99 GAA, a .968 SV%, and 1 SO in his last six appearances. He has also posted a 6-1-1 record, along with a 1.11 GAA, a .963 SV%, and 1 SO in his last eight games. Talbot has posted a 9-2-1 record, along with a 1.48 GAA, .951 SV%, and 2 SO in his last 12 games. He has earned at least one point in 16 of his last 18 appearances (13-2-3 record), and in 17 of 20 games sinceFeb. 4 (14-3-3 record).

 

RICK ROLLING

Rick Nash enters the game ranked among the top 10 in the NHL in all of the following categories: even strength goals (first - 30), SHG (tied for first - four), goals per game (second - 0.57), games with a goal (tied for second - 32), goals (third - 39), SOG (third - 264), GWG (tied for third - eight), SHP (tied for third - four), takeaways (sixth - 65), and plus/minus rating (tied for eighth - plus-24). He is the only NHL player who ranks among the top 10 in all of those categories, and he is the only NHL player who ranks tied for third or higher in goals, even strength goals, SHG, and GWG this season. Nash is the first Ranger who has tallied at least 30 ESG, five PPG, and four SHG in the same season in franchise history.

 

DAN'S THE MAN

Dan Girardi enters the game ranked 18th on the Rangers all-time games played list and eighth on the franchise's all-time games played list for defensemen (639). The Rangers alternate captain is tied for first among all NHL players - and leads all NHL defensemen - in games played since he made his NHL debut on Jan. 27, 2007.

 

RANGERS ALL-TIME GAMES PLAYED AMONG DEFENSEMEN

6. Ott Heller - 647

7. Rod Seiling - 644

8. Dan Girardi - 639

 

INJURIES (99 Man-Games Lost to Injury):

  • Kevin Klein - upper-body - 3-4 weeks
  • Henrik Lundqvist - neck - injured reserve
  • Martin St. Louis - lower-body - 10-14 days

 

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