The Rangers play their 36th game of the 2018-19 season tonight, Dec. 27, against the Columbus Blue Jackets in a Metropolitan Division matchup at Madison Square Garden (7:00 p.m. ET - TV: MSG 2, Radio: ESPN 1050 AM). The Blueshirts have earned at least one point in 17 of the last 24 games (12-7-5 record) and in 20 of the last 30 games (14-10-6 record).
RANGERS VS. BLUE JACKETS
All-Time: 18-14-1-1 (8-5-1-1 at home; 10-9-0-0 on the road)
2018-19: Tonight's game is the second of four meetings between the Rangers and Blue Jackets, and the first of two meetings 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), following their 5-4 win in a shootout on Nov. 10 at Columbus. Pavel Buchnevich (one goal, one assist), Jimmy Vesey (one goal, one assist), and Kevin Hayes (two assists) each tallied two points in the contest, and Vesey recorded the game-deciding goal in the fifth round of the shootout. Following tonight's game, the Rangers and Blue Jackets will face each other on the following dates: Jan. 13 (at Columbus), Apr. 5 (at MSG).
The Rangers have won 11 of their last 17 games against the Blue Jackets, dating back to Jan. 16, 2015 (10-6-0 record over the span).
Eleven of the last 12 meetings between the Rangers and Blue Jackets, as well as 15 of the last 17 meetings between the two teams, have been decided by two goals or fewer.
New York has not allowed a power play goal against Columbus in 16 of the last 22 meetings between the two teams (54-for-60; 90.0% on the penalty kill over the span).
Marc Staal is the Rangers' all-time leader in games played against the Blue Jackets (24). Henrik Lundqvist is the Blueshirts' all-time leader in appearances (21) and wins (11) by a goaltender against Columbus.
RANGERS-BLUE JACKETS CONNECTIONS
Adam McQuaid was selected by Columbus in the second round (55th overall) of the 2005 NHL Entry Draft.
Brandon Dubinsky played parts of six seasons with the Rangers (2006-07 - 2011-12) and won the Steven McDonald Extra Effort Award during his rookie season in 2007-08.
Anthony Duclair played part of one season with the Rangers (2014-15) and was selected by the Blueshirts in the third round (80th overall) of the 2013 NHL Entry Draft.
John Tortorella served as Rangers Head Coach for parts of six seasons (1999-00; 2008-09 - 2012-13). During his tenure with the Blueshirts, he was named a finalist for the Jack Adams Award as the NHL's Head Coach of the Year in 2011-12. Four players on the Rangers' current roster were coached by Tortorella during his tenure with the Rangers: Henrik Lundqvist (2008-09 - 2012-13), Marc Staal (2008-09 - 2012-13), Mats Zuccarello (2010-11 - 2011-12; 2012-13), and Chris Kreider(2011-12 - 2012-13).
Blue Jackets President of Hockey Operations John Davidson played parts of eight seasons with the Rangers (1975-76 - 1982-83) and served as TV Analyst for 20 years on MSG Network (1986 - 2006).
Sam Rosen and John Davidson were broadcast partners for 20 years on MSG Network (1986 - 2006), and they each received the Foster Hewitt Memorial Award from the Hockey Hall of Fame for outstanding contributions as a hockey broadcaster (Rosen - 2016; Davidson - 2009). "Sam and JD" are one of only three local broadcast teams where both announcers have received the Foster Hewitt Memorial Award; the other two are Dave Strader and Mickey Redmond (Detroit) and Bob Miller and Nick Nickson (Los Angeles).
Blue Jackets TV Color Analyst Jody Shelley played part of one season with the Rangers (2009-10).
Pavel Buchnevich (75th overall), Anthony Duclair (80th overall), and Oliver Bjorkstrand (89th overall) were all selected in the third round of the 2013 NHL Entry Draft. The pick the Rangers used to select Buchnevich was acquired from Columbus as part of the team's trade with the Blue Jackets to acquire Rick Nash on July 23, 2012.
Nick Foligno's Great-Uncle-in-Law is Rangers legend Ed Giacomin.
Cam Atkinson is a native of Riverside, Connecticut. Kevin Shattenkirk and Atkinson were friends and teammates while playing youth hockey.
Cam Atkinson attended Avon Old Farms School in Connecticut. Several former Rangers played high school hockey at Avon Old Farms, including Hall of Famer Brian Leetch.
Chris Kreider, Kevin Hayes, and Cam Atkinson were all teammates at Boston College for one season (2010-11). Kreider and Atkinson helped Boston College win the National Championship in 2009-10. In addition, Greg Brown was either the Assistant Coach or Associate Head Coach when Kreider, Hayes, and Atkinson attended the school (Brown coached Atkinson for three seasons from 2008-09 - 2010-11).
Chris Kreider, Neal Pionk, Cam Atkinson, and Sonny Milano helped the United States win a bronze medal at the 2018 IIHF World Championship. In addition, Jeff Gorton and Bill Zito were both involved with the player selection process for Team USA in the tournament.
Brett Howden and Pierre-Luc Dubois were both selected in the first round of the 2016 NHL Entry Draft. Howden and Dubois helped Canada win a gold medal at the 2015 Ivan Hlinka Memorial Tournament and a bronze medal at the 2015 IIHF U18 World Championship.
Jimmy Vesey and Seth Jones helped the United States win a gold medal at the 2013 IIHF World Junior Championship. Vesey and Jones also helped the United States earn a bronze medal at the 2015 IIHF World Championship.
Vladislav Namestnikov and Artemi Panarin helped Russia win a bronze medal at the 2017 IIHF World Championship.
Henrik Lundqvist and Sergei Bobrovsky have both won the Vezina Trophy as the NHL's Best Goaltender (Lundqvist - 2011-12; Bobrovsky - 2012-13 and 2016-17).
Brady Skjei and Zach Werenski were the two defensemen who were selected to the NHL's All-Rookie Team in 2016-17.
Brady Skjei and Seth Jones helped the United States win a gold medal at the 2012 IIHF World U18 Championship and a silver medal at the 2011 World U17 Hockey Challenge.
Mika Zibanejad and Alexander Wennberg played in the Djurgardens organization in Sweden for two seasons (2010-11 and 2011-12).
Chris Kreider, Brandon Dubinsky, and Nick Foligno represented the United States at the 2010 IIHF World Championship.
Brady Skjei and Nick Foligno represented the United States at the 2016 IIHF World Championship, and David Quinn was one of their Assistant Coaches.
Kevin Hayes and Seth Jones represented the United States at the 2014 IIHF World Championship.
Adam McQuaid and Riley Nash were teammates with the Bruins for two seasons (2016-17 and 2017-18).
Mika Zibanejad and Nick Foligno were teammates with the Senators for part of one season (2011-12).
Tony DeAngelo and Anthony Duclair were teammates in the Coyotes organization (with Arizona in the NHL and the Tucson Roadrunners of the American Hockey League) for one season (2016-17).
Boo Nieves and Zach Werenski were teammates at the University of Michigan for two seasons (2014-15 and 2015-16).
Marc Staal, Adam McQuaid, and Nick Foligno were all teammates with the Sudbury Wolves of the Ontario Hockey League (OHL) for three seasons (2004-05 - 2006-07).
Cody McLeod and Brandon Dubinsky were teammates with the Portland Winterhawks of the Western Hockey League (WHL) for three seasons (2002-03 - 2004-05).
Vladislav Namestnikov, Josh Anderson, and Scott Harrington were all teammates with the London Knights of the Ontario Hockey League (OHL) for one season (2011-12) and helped London win the OHL Championship.
Kevin Shattenkirk was coached by Brad Shaw (either as an Assistant Coach or Associate Coach) with the Blues for parts of six seasons (2010-11 - 2015-16).
David Quinn was Nick Foligno's Head Coach with the United States at the 2004 World U17 Hockey Challenge. Quinn was also one of Foligno's Assistant Coaches with the United States at the 2016 IIHF World Championship.
David Quinn was one of Cam Atkinson's Assistant Coaches with the United States at the 2012 IIHF World Championship.
Tony DeAngelo and Sonny Milano were both selected in the first round of the 2014 NHL Entry Draft. DeAngelo, Milano, and Zach Werenski represented the United States at the 2015 IIHF World Junior Championship.
Brady Skjei and Ryan Murray were both selected in the first round of the 2012 NHL Entry Draft.
Kevin Shattenkirk, Brendan Smith, and Riley Nash were all selected in the first round of the 2007 NHL Entry Draft.
John Tortorella was an Assistant Coach with the Sabres during Greg Brown's tenure as a player with the team (1990-91; 1992-93).
Chris Drury and Brad Larsen were teammates with the Avalanche for parts of two seasons (2000-01 and 2001-02).
Sonny Milano is a native of Massapequa, New York.
INDIVIDUAL CAREER STATISTICS VS. BLUE JACKETS
Henrik Lundqvist - 21 GP, 11-8-1, 2.87 GAA, .909 SV% - Lundqvist has posted an 8-5-0 record in his last 14 appearances against Columbus (dating back to Mar. 21, 2014), and he has allowed two goals or fewer in seven of the 14 contests.
Mika Zibanejad - 19 GP, 4-8-12 - Zibanejad has registered 12 points (four goals, eight assists) in his last 12 games against Columbus, including five points (two goals, three assists) in the last four contests against the Blue Jackets.
Kevin Hayes - 16 GP, 5-6-11 - Hayes has recorded seven points (three goals, four assists) in his last eight contests against the Blue Jackets.
Chris Kreider - 22 GP, 6-5-11 - Kreider has tallied a goal/point in each of the last two games (two goals) and in three of the last four games (three goals) against Columbus. He has also notched 10 points (six goals, four assists) in his last 17 games against the Blue Jackets.
Mats Zuccarello - 21 GP, 4-5-9 - Zuccarello has notched five points (four goals, one assist) in his last 13 games against the Blue Jackets.
Ryan Strome - 17 GP, 4-3-7 - Strome has notched seven points (four goals, three assists) in his last 15 games against Columbus.
Vladislav Namestnikov - 12 GP, 1-5-6 - Namestnikov has registered an assist/point in four of his last five games against Columbus (four assists).
Pavel Buchnevich - 7 GP, 2-3-5 - Buchnevich has recorded five points (two goals, three assists) in the last four games against Columbus.
Jimmy Vesey - 10 GP, 3-2-5 - Vesey has registered a point in four of the last eight games against the Blue Jackets (three goals, two assists).
CONNECTING THE DOTS
Several Rangers players have connections with fellow members of the Blueshirts and/or members of the team's coaching staff in addition to being teammates with the Rangers:
Pavel Buchnevich and Alexandar Georgiev were teammates while representing Russia in international competition during the 2014-15 season.
Fredrik Claesson and Mika Zibanejad were teammates with several teams prior to joining the Rangers:
The two were teammates in Sweden with Djurgardens' U18 team, U20 team in SuperElit, and professional team in the SHL over the course of three seasons (2009-10 - 2011-12).
Zibanejad and Claesson helped Sweden earn a gold medal at the 2012 IIHF World Junior Championship.
Claesson and Zibanejad were both selected by the Ottawa Senators in the 2011 NHL Entry Draft and were teammates in the Senators' organization (either with Ottawa or with Ottawa's American Hockey League (AHL) team, the Binghamton Senators) for parts of three seasons (2012-13 - 2013-14; 2015-16).
Fredrik Claesson and Jesper Fast represented Sweden in several tournaments over the course of three seasons (2009-10 - 2011-12).
Kevin Hayes and Chris Kreider were teammates at Boston College for two seasons (2010-11 and 2011-12) and won the National Championship in 2011-12.
Greg Brown was either an Assistant Coach or Associate Head Coach at Boston College throughout Hayes' and Kreider's tenures at the school.
Kevin Hayes and Brady Skjei represented the United States at the 2017 IIHF World Championship.
Kevin Hayes and Jimmy Vesey were friends while growing up in Massachusetts.
Chris Kreider and Neal Pionk helped the United States earn a bronze medal at the 2018 IIHF World Championship.
Chris Kreider and Kevin Shattenkirk represented the United States at the 2011 IIHF World Championship.
Cody McLeod and Kevin Shattenkirk were teammates with the Avalanche for part of the 2010-11 season.
Cody McLeod was coached by David Quinn with the Avalanche during the 2012-13 season (Quinn was an Assistant Coach with Colorado).
Adam McQuaid and Marc Staal were teammates with the Sudbury Wolves of the Ontario Hockey League (OHL) for four seasons (2003-04 - 2006-07).
David Oliver held several roles throughout the Avalanche organization for 10 seasons during Cody McLeod's tenure with the team (2007-08 - 2016-17). Oliver was the General Manager of Colorado's American Hockey League (AHL) affiliate, the Lake Erie Monsters, during McLeod's only season in Lake Erie in 2007-08.
Kevin Shattenkirk was coached by David Quinn on several teams throughout his career before Quinn became the Rangers Head Coach:
Quinn was an Associate Head Coach at Boston University for two seasons while Shattenkirk attended the school (2007-08 and 2008-09), and Boston University won the National Championship in 2008-09.
Quinn was Shattenkirk's first Head Coach in professional hockey, as he coached Shattenkirk for parts of two seasons (2009-10 and 2010-11) with the Lake Erie Monsters of the American Hockey League (AHL).
David Oliver served as the Avalanche's Director of Player Development for two seasons (2009-10 and 2010-11) while Kevin Shattenkirk was in the organization. Shattenkirk made his professional hockey debut in 2009-10 and his NHL debut with Colorado in 2010-11.
Kevin Shattenkirk and Brendan Smith were both selected in the first round of the 2007 NHL Entry Draft (Shattenkirk - 14th overall by Colorado; Smith - 27th overall by Detroit).
Kevin Shattenkirk is a native of New Rochelle, New York. He was a Rangers fan growing up, and his favorite player was Brian Leetch.
Kevin Shattenkirk was coached by Rangers TV/Radio Analyst Dave Maloney when he was in high school.
Brady Skjei was coached by David Quinn at the 2016 IIHF World Championship (Quinn was an Assistant Coach with Team USA).
Brady Skjei was coached by Greg Brown at the 2014 IIHF World Junior Championship (Brown was an Assistant Coach with Team USA).
Lias Andersson's uncle, Mikael Andersson, was teammates with Lindy Ruff as members of the Buffalo Sabres (1985-86 - 1988-89).
Lias Andersson's father, Niklas Andersson, was teammates with Henrik Lundqvist as members of Frolunda in the Swedish Hockey League (SHL) for four seasons (2001-02 - 2004-05).
Lias Andersson and Mika Zibanejad helped Sweden earn a gold medal at the 2018 IIHF World Championship.
Ryan Strome and Mika Zibanejad were selected with back-to-back picks in the first round of the 2011 NHL Entry Draft (Strome - fifth overall by the NY Islanders; Zibanejad - sixth overall by Ottawa). Vladislav Namestnikov was also selected in the first round of the 2011 NHL Entry Draft.
HOME SWEET HOME
The Rangers have earned at least one point in each of the last six home games (2-0-4 record), in 13 of the last 14 home games (9-1-4 record), in 14 of the last 16 home games (10-2-4 record), and in 15 of the last 18 home games (11-3-4 record). The Blueshirts are tied for fourth in the NHL in points (26) and are tied for seventh in wins (11) at home this season. In addition, the Rangers' four regulation losses at home (11-4-4 record in 19 games at MSG) are tied for the second-fewest in the NHL in 2018-19.
Only nine NHL rookies 20 years old or younger have tallied 13 or more points this season, and the Rangers are the only NHL team that has two of those players (Chytil and Howden). In addition, the Rangers are one of three NHL teams that have at least two rookies (of any age) who have tallied 13 or more points this season (Chytil and Howden). Prior to 2018-19, the last time the Rangers had two rookies 20 years old or younger who recorded 12 or more points in the same season was 1987-88 (Brian Leetch and Ulf Dahlen).
Including team goals awarded for a shootout win, the Blueshirts have registered three or more goals in seven of the last eight games, in 18 of the last 25 games, and in 23 of 35 games this season. The Rangers are tied for seventh in the NHL in games with three or more goals in 2018-19.
Thus far this season, 23 different players have tallied a goal for the Rangers. The Blueshirts are only one of three NHL teams that have had 23 or more players record a goal this season (Vancouver and Vegas).
Rangers defensemen have tallied 14 goals over the last 22 contests. At least one Rangers defenseman has recorded a goal in four of the last eight games, in six of the last 12 contests, and in 12 of the last 22 games.
Henrik Lundqvist has been selected as one of the game's Three Stars in 12 of his 26 appearances this season. Lundqvist has made at least 30 saves in 16 of 26 appearances this season, and he has posted a .900 SV% or better in 20 of those 26 appearances. He is tied for third among NHL goaltenders in games with a .900 SV% or better this season, and he ranks third among NHL goaltenders in games with 30 or more saves in 2018-19. Lundqvist has earned at least one point in each of his last 10 appearances at MSG (6-0-4 record, 2.24 GAA, .932 SV% over the span).
HEY HEY HAYES
Kevin Hayes enters the contest with a career-high seven-game point streak (five goals, eight assists over the span). In addition, Hayes' seven-game point streak is the longest any Ranger has posted this season. He has posted a multi-point game in five of the seven contests during his point streak. Hayes has also recorded 16 points (five goals, 11 assists) in the last 12 games and 27 points (eight goals, 19 assists) in the last 24 games. Since the start of his point streak on Dec. 8, Hayes is tied for fourth in the NHL (min. three games played) in points per game (1.86). He is one of 15 NHL players who have recorded at least 10 goals, 20 assists, and a plus-10 rating thus far this season. In addition, Hayes is one of nine Rangers in franchise history who have registered 30 or more points in each of their first five NHL seasons, along with Edgar Laprade, Andy Hebenton, Steve Vickers, Ron Duguay, Mark Pavelich, Reijo Ruotsalainen, Tomas Sandstrom, and Derek Stepan.
Among NHL players who are either in their age 18 or age 19 season, Filip Chytil is tied for fourth in goals (six), is tied for fifth in games played (35), and ranks sixth in points (13) this season. He has notched a point in two of the last three games (one goal, one assist), in four of the last six games (one goal, three assists), and in 10 of the last 18 games (six goals, four assists).
Chris Kreider is one of two NHL players who have recorded at least 15 goals and 70 hits this season (Alex Ovechkin). He has tallied a goal in each of the last two games and in three of the last four games, and he leads the Rangers in goals this season (17).
The Rangers were 0-for-2 (4:00) on Dec. 23 vs. Philadelphia.
New York has recorded four power play goals over the last five games (4-for-18; 22.2%).
The Rangers have tallied a power play goal in eight of the last 20 games (12-for-56; 21.4%); New York ranks 10th in the NHL in power play efficiency over the span (since Nov. 9).
The Rangers were 1-for-2 (2:03) on Dec. 23 vs. Philadelphia.
The Blueshirts are 8-for-9 (88.9%) on the penalty kill over the last three games.
New York is tied for fourth in the NHL in shorthanded goals this season (five).
Marc Staal - 4 games away from 800 in his NHL career/with the Rangers
Henrik Lundqvist - 4 wins away from tying Terry Sawchuk for sixth place on the NHL's all-time wins list (445)
Jimmy Vesey - 6 games away from 200 in his NHL career/with the Rangers
Tony DeAngelo - 6 games away from 100 in his NHL career
INJURIES (107 Man-Games Lost to Injury)
Cody McLeod (fractured hand) - has missed 13 games
Kevin Shattenkirk (separated shoulder) - has missed five games
Jesper Fast (upper-body) - has missed four games
THIS DAY IN RANGERS HISTORY
Dec. 26, 1991 - The Rangers pulled off their largest comeback win in franchise history, rallying from a 6-1 deficit in the first period to defeat the Washington Capitals, 8-6. Mark Messier (one goal, two assists), Mike Gartner (one goal, one assist), Brian Leetch (two assists), and Adam Graves (two assists) all recorded two or more points in the contest.
Dec. 26, 1993 - Mike Gartner registered his 600th career NHL goal as the Rangers defeated the New Jersey Devils, 8-3, at MSG.
Dec. 27, 1974 - The line of Steve Vickers-Jean Ratelle-Rod Gilbert registered five goals and 13 points as the Rangers defeated the Buffalo Sabres, 9-5, at MSG. Ratelle tallied five points (one goal, four assists), while Gilbert and Vickers each recorded four points (two goals, two assists). Brad Park tallied two assists to tie Harry Howell's then-franchise record for points by a defenseman (345).
Dec. 27, 1992 - Trailing by three goals with seven minutes remaining in regulation, the Rangers tallied four unanswered goals to defeat the Boston Bruins, 6-5, at MSG. Nineteen-year-old rookie Alexei Kovalev recorded his first career NHL hat trick and registered the game-winning goal with 35.9 seconds remaining in regulation.
Dec. 27, 1996 - Brian Leetch tallied his 611th career point as a Ranger, passing Ron Greschner to become the franchise's all-time lead in points by a defenseman. Leetch recorded two assists as the Blueshirts defeated the Mighty Ducks of Anaheim, 3-2, at MSG.
Blue Jackets President of Hockey Operations John Davidson was the Rangers' TV Analyst on MSG Network during the 1993-94 season, working alongside play-by-play broadcaster Sam Rosen. Rosen and Davidson worked side-by-side as the Rangers' broadcast team on MSG for 20 years (1986-87 - 2005-06), and both announcers have received the Foster Hewitt Memorial Award, which is presented by the Hockey Hall of Fame, for outstanding contributions as a hockey broadcaster.
Posted 2018-12-28 8:41 AM (#716959 - in reply to #716958) Subject: Re: Game 36: Columbus Blue Jackets @ New York Rangers 12/27/18 - 7pm - MSG2
Mikey Red - 2018-12-28 9:24 AM
NYR has 10 ROW...Do we build around Hayes , Kreider and Zib? or do we cash them in and leave it to Gordie to make the picks? or do we take other teams 1st rd prospects?
Hate to beat a dead horse but all these loser points are killing us. 10 ROW is easily the lowest in the league. We have 7 Bettman points, tied with SJ and NJ for most in the league. So we're basically the worst team in the league but if you look at points standings we're 21.
That differential is essentially the difference between picking first overall and 10th overall.
As far as Hayes, Kreider and Zbad, Hayes is going to be looking for big money on a UFA contract, and he'll be 27 when he starts it, so I'll say right now it makes zero sense to keep him at this point. Let him keep scoring and inflating his trade value, and pray he does not get hurt.
Kreider is in a similar situation but delayed a year so he'll probably be back for another year and then get traded next deadline. Or dark horse scenario, someone with not a lot of cap space can trade for him this year and have him also for next. He's cheap as hell when you look at cap hit vs production.
This is the last year we can trade Zbad before his NMC kicks in, and he's done nothing to indicate that we could/should move on from him so I think he's your #1 center for the next few years as young centers continue to develop. He has 3 more years after this one finishes (all NMC years) and his contract is pretty cheap so I don't have a problem with this, plus, he's still 25. Even if he gets surpassed on the depth chart after another year or two that makes him a $5.3m second or third line center, which isn't the end of the world considering we survived Brad Richards.
Sadly, Zucc is all but gone this deadline. I don't think they'll find a much of a market for anyone else, but I wouldn't be surprised if someone picked up a McQuaid or a Claesson. It's also possible the Rangers cut bait on Deangelo and sell low on him rather than having to qualify him.