Standings: Panthers (20-12-7), Rangers (24-9-4)
Leading Scorer: Kris Versteeg (17-21-38)
Goaltender: Scott Clemmensen (9 GP, 3.03 GAA, .890 SV%)
Rangers Lines (probable)
Artem Anisimov-Derek Stepan-Marian Gaborik
Brandon Dubinsky-Brad Richards-Ryan Callahan
Ruslan Fedotenko-Brian Boyle-Carl Hagelin
Mike Rupp-John Mitchell-Brandon Prust
Ryan McDonagh-Dan Girardi
Michael Del Zotto-Anton Stralman
Marc Staal-Stu Bickel
Martin Biron gets the start tonight.
Scratches/Injuries: Wojtek Wolski (groin), Mike Sauer (concussion), Erik Christensen (healthy), Jeff Woywitka (healthy)
Preview: The Southeast Division leading Florida Panthers are STILL a good team. They are a one line offensive machine, but new lines in Miami have them trying to find balanced scoring despite a rash of injuries to their forwards. The Rangers have done well against the Cats, who are now also without Jose Theodore. Scott Clemmensen gets the start tonight, as he did the last time these two teams. faced each other.
After losing to the Panthers by a score of 2-1 in November, the Rangers have outscored Florida 10-2 in their past two meetings, winning by scores of 6-1 and 4-1 in December. Not coincidentally, the Rangers success against the Panthers has come with the call ups of John Mitchell and Carl Hagelin, who both possess enough speed to stifle the Cats forecheck.
Of course, those injuries to the Panthers help, but it’s not like the Rangers have been without injury either.
Crazy Thought: A powerplay goal would be nice.
Opponent’s Blog: The Rat Trick
Game time tonight is 7:00pm on MSG, AM1050 and XM213.