Standings: Blackhawks (36-25-7), Rangers (42-17-7)
NYR Leading Scorer: Marian Gaborik (32-26-58)
CHI Leading Scorer: Marian Hossa (27-37-64)
NYR Goaltender: Henrik Lundqvist (49 GS, 1.84 GAA, .940 SV%)
CHI Goaltender: Ray Emery (23 GS, 2.68 GAA, .910 SV%)
Rangers Lines (probable):
Artem Anisimov-Derek Stepan-Marian Gaborik
Carl Hagelin-Brad Richards-Ryan Callahan
Ruslan Fedotenko-Brian Boyle- Brandon Prust
Mike Rupp-John Mitchell-John Scott
Ryan McDonagh-Dan Girardi
Michael Del Zotto–Anton Stralman
Marc Staal-Stu Bickel
Henrik Lundqvist gets the nod.
Probable Scratches/Injuries: Mike Sauer (concussion), Brandon Dubinsky (nose/hand), Jeff Woywitka (healthy), Steve Eminger (healthy)
Preview: Ray Emery, for some unknown reason, owns the Rangers. He has shut out the Rangers twice in seven starts, and has a 6-1-0 record with a 1.5 GAA and a .950 SV% against the Blueshirts. No wonder why he’s starting tonight for the Hawks.
On the bright side, the Hawks are still without captain Jonathan Toews. But with Hossa, Sharp, Kane, and Keith still dressing, that’s not much comfort. They have one of the strongest top-six forwards and top-four defense in the league. The problem is that after those ten players, their talent falls off a cliff.
Joel Quenneville is one of the best in the business, and he has already had his Hawks beat the Rangers once this year. That win ended a nine game losing streak. There is no such streak for the Hawks, but the Rangers have lost two in regulation in a row, and three of their last four. Looks like the roles are reversed this time.
Crazy Thought: A powerplay goal?
Opposition Blog: Committed Indians (Ever so politically correct…)