Posted January 31, 2012 on AP on Fox
New_york_rangers_b93f
The New York Rangers and New Jersey Devils are bitter rivals, but have met just once this season. They'll make up for it by meeting five times over the next six weeks. Fresh off an MVP performance in the All-Star game, Marian Gaborik leads the Eastern Conference-leading Rangers across the Hudson River to face the Devils on Tuesday night. Gaborik scored twice and set up Artem Anisimov's tally in a 4-1 win in Newark on Dec. 20, the first meeting of the season between these Atlantic Division rivals. The Rangers and Devils are about to become much more familiar with each other, meeting five times in the next six weeks including a matchup at Madison Square Garden next Tuesday. "I feel like playing those guys brings out the best in both teams," Devils captain Zach Parise told his team's official website. "It'll be a good test for us. Those are huge points, 10 points that we'd like to get, it's going to be 10 important points for us to get into the playoffs." The Rangers (31-12-4) own the most points in the East, while the Devils (26-19-3) are in a three-way tie with Florida and Toronto for the two final playoff spots. Gaborik is a big reason for New York's success, ranking among the NHL leaders with 25 goals. He netted a hat trick and assisted on another goal to garner MVP honors and lead Team Chara to a 12-9 win over Team Alfredsson in Sunday's All-Star game in Ottawa. One of Gaborik's tallies came against Rangers teammate Henrik Lundqvist. "It's always tough to score on him," Gaborik said of Lundqvist, third in the NHL with a 1.87 goals-against average. "It's not easy. I was fortunate to be lucky against him, but I think he's one of the best if not the best goalie in the league." The Devils, who have totaled three goals during a three-game slide, might agree since Lundqvist is 23-9-5 with a 1.82 GAA against them in the regular season. He made 30 saves in last month's matchup, improving to 4-1-0 with a 1.19 GAA and a shutout in his last five visits to Prudential Center. Coach John Tortorella, though, is wary of rust play from his Rangers, who haven't played since a 3-0 win over Winnipeg last Tuesday. Lundqvist made 22 saves for his fifth shutout of the season, while Ryan Callahan had one goal and one assist. "We know there will be certain types of sloppiness (due to the break), but as soon as we get into the right kind of mindset as far as taking care of details the quicker we will get back to our game," Tortorella told the team's official website. New York has won six of the last eight overall meetings with New Jersey. The Devils return from the All-Star break to continue a season-high six-game homestand, during which they're 1-2-1 so far after falling 2-1 in a shootout to Buffalo last Tuesday. "I think guys are happy to be back," Parise said. "The atmosphere, the feeling is good. I think our biggest thing right now is we have to make sure we're prepared to play, because it's the best team in the East and our rivals. "We have to make sure we're ready to go. We know how good they are." Ilya Kovalchuk hasn't scored and is a minus-3 in his last three games after scoring seven goals with three assists in his previous six contests. The left wing, who leads New Jersey with 19 goals, has five in 10 matchups against the Rangers since joining New Jersey during the 2009-10 season. Kovalchuk came up empty on six shots and was a minus-3 in last month's loss. Martin Brodeur is scheduled to start in net for New Jersey, seeking to improve upon his 1-3-1 record and 2.77 GAA in five home starts this month. He's 1-4-1 in his last six games versus the Rangers.
THE BACKYARD
BEST OF MAXIM
RELATED ARTICLES

Gaborik, Team Chara take NHL All-Star Game

OTTAWA (AP) -- Marian Gaborik made New York Rangers teammate Henrik Lundqvist pay for not selecting him to play for Daniel Alfredsson's team in the NHL All-Star game. Gaborik beat Lundqvist twice in the first period, finished with three goals and an assist, and earned MVP honors in leading Team Chara to a 12-9 win over Team Alfredsson on Sunday. Chara, with the eventual winning...

Monday (1/30/12) Headlines

Bergen Record - Rangers' Marian Gaborik wins MVP, bragging rightsBergen Record - Rangers goalie Henrik Lundqvist as perfect as it getsNew York Post - Gaborik scores twice on fellow Ranger Lundqvist in All-Star GameDaily News - Gaborik gets tricky, wins All-Star MVPNew York Times - Gaborik Touches Off a Typical GoalfestNewsday - Gaborik's hat trick leads Team Chara to All...

Gaborik claims NHL All-Star Game MVP

Marian Gaborik staked his claim to NHL All-Star game MVP honors.

Team Chara wins NHL All-Star game, beating Team Alfredsson, 12-9

Rangers' Marian Gaborik earns most valuable player honors with three goals and an assist. Tim Thomas makes 18 saves in the final period, and extends his record by winning his fourth All-Star game.OTTAWA — Marian Gaborik scored against New York Rangers teammate Henrik Lundqvist twice in the first period, and finished with three goals and an assist to earn most valuable player...

2012 All Star Game Thread

A little late on this one, but here’s the game thread for the 2012 All Star Game. Lineups are below, with Marian Gaborik and Henrik Lundqvist starting for their respective teams: Team Alfredsson: Michalek – Spezza – Alfredsson Couture – Giroux – Stamkos Sedin – Sedin – Hartnell Neal – Tavares – Pominville Karlsson – Letang Yandle – Weber Edler – Girardi Lundqvist...

Video: All-Star highlights: Gaborik leads victory

Marian Gaborik had the hat trick in leading Team Chara to a 12-9 verdict over Team Alfredsson. Hometown star Daniel Alfredsson scored twice. (NBC Sports)

Gaborik leads Team Chara to All-Star win (AP)

Marian Gaborik made New York Rangers teammate Henrik Lundqvist pay for not selecting him to play for Daniel Alfredsson's team in the NHL All-Star game. Gaborik beat Lundqvist twice in the first period, finished with three goals and an assist, and earned MVP honors in leading Team Chara to a 12-9 win over Team Alfredsson on Sunday.

Gaborik's three goals lead Team Chara to all-star victory

Marian Gaborik got the better of New York Rangers teammate Henrik Lund qvist, and Zdeno Chara scored the winning goal for the NHL all-star team named after him.

Gaborik's trick leads Team Chara to All-Star win

Marian Gaborik made New York Rangers teammate Henrik Lundqvist pay for not selecting him to play for Daniel Alfredsson's team in the NHL All-Star game.

MVP Gaborik's hat trick leads All-Stars

Marian Gaborik made New York Rangers teammate Henrik Lundqvist pay for not selecting him to play for Daniel Alfredsson's team in the NHL All-Star Game.

Rangers Rule All Star Weekend

Full disclosure, I was in Atlantic City this weekend and pretty much missed all the All Star festivities. But from what I've been able to gather, it looks like our Rangers pretty much dominated.It all started on Thursday night, when Marian Gaborik and Henrik Lundqvist stole the show during the NHL All Star Game draft... Then Saturday night, Carl Hagelin proved...

Benn, Team Chara win NHL All-Star game

OTTAWA (AP) -- Marian Gaborik got the best of New York Rangers teammate Henrik Lundqvist, and Zdeno Chara scored the winning goal for the NHL All-Star team named after him. Even in defeat, Daniel Alfredsson rewarded the hometown fans with two goals and an assist, and then the Ottawa Senators captain provided a hint that he might come back for one more season. For an All-Star game...

Video: Gaborik scores, pokes fun at Lundqvist

Team Chara's Marian Gaborik opened the scoring and had some fun with Rangers teammate and Team Alfredsson goalie Henrik Lundqvist. (NBC Sports)

Video: Rangers Talk All Star Weekend

Marian Gaborik... Henrik Lundqvist... For video of Dan Girardi's thoughts, click the "Read More" tab below. Dan Girardi... Remember to follow me on Twitter & Facebook or e-mail me at nyrfan94@yahoo.com.

Red Wings' Pavel Datsyuk records three assists in Team Chara All-Star game win

Marian Gaborik made New York Rangers teammate Henrik Lundqvist pay for not selecting him to play for Daniel Alfredsson's team in the NHL All-Star game.
NHL News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

Today's Best Stuff
For Bloggers

Join the Yardbarker Network for more promotion, traffic, and money.

Company Info
Help
What is Yardbarker?

Yardbarker is the largest network of sports blogs and pro athlete blogs on the web. This site is the hub of the Yardbarker Network, where our editors and algorithms curate the best sports content from our network and beyond.