Alain Vigneault met with the media on the first day of training camp and said (SNY):

  • "added good pieces to our back end, we have a tremendous opportunity at the center position. Looking forward to camp, we got quite a few decisions to make moving forward. I think we have a good team and we will gear ourselves to get ready for another good season."
  • "I think we have some real strong leadership in our group. JR (Rangers PR) and I were talking about it that when I got here we had Callahan, G, Step, Marc Staal but before that it was Jagr and Shanahan and Chris Drury and now is the evolution. A lot of guys who have been with me, now, starting our 5th year together. Zuccarello, Kreider, it's their turn to assume that leadership role and I think that quite a few of them have been waiting for this opportunity for quite some time. McDonagh is evolving into a true captain and using the people around him real well and has great influence in the dressing room. He is one of the best examples I have ever been associated with. I am very confident in this leadership group, I think we will see in camp and the season that some of our players, and I have named a few, will really step up and assume a bigger role like Rick Nash did last year, a lot more vocal, Nasher had been a captain before but you could tell that he knew that he had to step up in certain situations and I think he did a great job and will continue."
  • On the center position and JT, "first, for JT, I have told him that we will start him at the center position. First of all, we know he can play real well on either side of the wing. I know he prefers the right side to the left side but this is a good chance to get him some work in the middle. At some point, early on or in the season he is probably going to play a little bit of center. It happened last year, it happened the year before so giving him that experience off the bat is a good thing. Giving him some more understanding, even though he was drafted as a natural center, he has played more wing since he has been here with me, we will start him there. We have decisions to make throughout our lines, the makeup of those lines, we will take training camp to do that. We have 6 games in 8 nights. In terms of Lias, everything I saw in development camp, I didn't go to Traverse City, but everything I heard from the people who were there, there is definitely a lot of upside there. I've mentioned this many times before, talent has no age. If a young man comes in and we think he can contribute to the success of our team he will be here."
  • On JT and playing center, "if you look at our center position now, there is opportunity for different guys to have a bigger role, there is an opportunity for Desharnais to come in, a 50 point scorer a few years ago and step in and play some big minutes for us. All that being said, natural center, our depth right now is on the respectable line so I would rather go out and see a guy like JT, who has played this position before, how he looks, how he feels. He is not a young player any more, he is a veteran player and I want to see his experience and I want to see what he can do at that position."
  • On Kevin Hayes, "tremendous amount of faith. We made that trade because we have faith in him and Mika. Hayes, like JT, is not a kid any more. He is a veteran player and he has some experience and it's their turn and there are no excuses. We believe they can get it done and at the end of the day they have to."
  • On Lias Andersson, "we gotta look at the on-ice product. Just like Filip, I have a tough time saying his last name, silent H, silent C, there is a guy that has been skating for 8 days, didn't go to Traverse City because of the injury but will skate tomorrow with group C and at some point we will see him in some games and early on in practices with our group. What I saw of his skill set during development camp was tremendous. Both of those young guys, I expect to see in practice and games and depending on how they perform we will make the best decisions for the team."
  • On Buchnevich, "he came in real early, I want to say third week in July. He has been working with our conditioning guys ever since, no back issues, condition wise he has followed the plan to a letter for what he was given. Young player that has a real solid skill set and potential, looking forward to seeing what he will bring to the table. There is a guy there who has so much offensive abilities and great skill set, I think he will come in and be a real good player for us."
  • On Henrik's plan, "I had a good chat with both Hank and Benoit, I told Hank that after discussing it with Benoit that I am not giving him a number of games this year. Every year there has been different situations to both goalies, whether it be Antti or Hank or when Cam became the number one for two months. I'm not giving him a set number of games, I'm gonna talk to him, talk to Benny and we will play this game by game. Hank has come in lighter, he looks, I want to say younger, he looks real fit and he is excited about this year. I talked to him about the consistency, I talked to Benny and him about that exact fact, we got a tremendous amount of "A" games from Hank last year, proving he is still one of the elite goalies in the league. What we need from him is a bit more consistency. He will have some "C" games now and then and he knows this and will be the first to tell you that he needs to be more consistent and he is ready for that challenge. I am really happy that after we got eliminated by Ottawa and he had played real well against Montreal and a little more so-so against Ottawa, he goes overseas and is the best goalie over there and helps his team in the Gold. There is that consistency, he knows it, Ben knows it and they will find a way to get on top of that and in my mind he is still an elite, top-five goalie."
  • On Pavelec, "this is all about, tired of answering the number of games Hank is going to play question -- no it's just that with talking with Hank and Benny it's more about how he feels and his body and mentally and we will focus on that, talk a little bit more and we will go that way this year and we think it's going to be better route for our team."
  • On Pavelec, "In certain players careers you catch them at the right time, I think our team and our organization have him at the right time. He has had a couple of off-years, you only get so many kicks at the can, you gotta have a highly motivated guy that wants to listen to the goalie coach, wants to help a team win to prove he belongs in the NHL. Played in the AHL for part of last year, he has had good numbers in the past and I think we got him at the right time. A lot of our internal people and Benny believe that he can be a real good goalie. When he plays we will expect the same thing from him that we got from Cam and Raanta."
  • On the defense, "part of our identity since I have been here is that speed factor and we added pieces to our back end that give us a bit more back end and more puck moving abilities that should enhance that speed factor, should make us quicker on our breakouts, quicker in our transition and more effective in the offensive zone. Lets wait and see how the guys play, that is one area where as an organization we are really excited to see what it's going to look like."
  • On Shattenkirk expectations, "on the ice, that puck moving ability 5 on 5 is something that we expect from him. On the PP, He has been one of the best PP guys in the league for quite some time. Before we signed Kevin we did some HW and since we signed him we also followed up, but tremendous teammate. Everything I have heard about this guy and how he conducts himself or how he helps out, whether it be from his time in STL or WSH, you hear from the coaches and teammates and training staff what a quality person he is. When you talk about our leadership group, there is a guy with some experience that I expect to step in and help us in that facet."
  • Do you expect to spend more time in the offensive zone, "talk about Corsi numbers and that, for me, I'm a big believer in looking at all the available stats and, I want go into specifics, and there are stats we keep track of here that are more important than that. It is an area that I believe, with our back end, we will be able to get into the offensive zone quicker and make more plays from the top, with the quality of our defense, which means seeing what could be available at the net quicker, getting shots through quicker. I definitely think that the back end, as far as offensive possibilities, that is something we will find out and improve here as guys get to know one another, it's an area that seems we are in stronger in right now, it seems that way on paper."
  • On Staal and Holden battling, "I think, it would be safe to say that there are a few guys, Marc being one of them, that is fighting for ice time, fighting for a spot on the team. If we decided to bring Marc Staal back it's bcause we believe in him and anyone who questions his character would be wrong, he has come back from two serious injuries, played big minutes, big games in the past. I like Marc Staal, I believe in Marc Staal but at the end of the day this is probably the first time in a while that he is fighting for a spot and minutes. He knows that and that is why you have training camp and then you take it a day at a time and make the best possible calls for the team."
  • On Holden, "I've had a good conversation with Nick. For 55 games last year he was one of our best defensemen. There were some games towards the end there where it might have been a bit more difficult but he still was a real effective player for us, defensively and offensively, he had some real good numbers. He has to take the positives from last year and it's a new season for everybody and his play will dictate how much he plays, that is probably the same for everybody. Some guys have more rope than others, it's how the game is but Nick was a good player for us last year and I am anxious to see what he is going to do."
  • On the young defense in camp, "from Anthony to Pionk to Russian Bereglazov, there are quite a few, Brady Skjei, I am expecting more from Brady, for him to compete for a top-four spot and be in there and in one of the conversations that we had is that he can play offense and defense. You are a good player and he needs to step up and his play will dictate that for us. Smytty is another one, on our team there are a lot of possibilities and options, guys will go on the ice and there will be some great internal competition. Everyone wants more ice time, show me what you got."
  • On Shattenkirk and McDonagh, "not early on, I am mixing and matching early on and we have 6 exhibition games in 8 nights. I want to see a lot of our younger guys that I don't get to see very much, how they have evolved and getting better. In the last 3 exhibition games we will get to more duos we are looking at, more lines we are looking at. From our last game we have 7 days until we start the season so we will have plenty of time to get this group ready."
  • Will JT play more, "every guy, right now, except for one I am thinking of at least 3 games, some guys may play 4 or 5 because we need to make a decision on them. JT is one of those guys that will be in that 3, for sure, 4 possibility."
  • On him going into his 5th year, "I'm real excited. We have made some real good changes, for me, I look at the opportunity we have and I have seen them grow for four years and to go into year five, the evolution on and off the ice, we are in a good place. I like our group, no one has talked about the window but when we beat Pittsburgh two years in a row, who would have thought that Pittsburgh would have won the Stanley Cup back to back with Murray in goal. We have a good team and we believe that we can compete for the Stanley Cup. First objective is to get into the playoffs. We will build our foundation in training camp, put our system in place, make sure that the group comes together and pick the players that will permit this group to attain their goals. I'm excited about that, management, my whole staff is excited. I met every player and there is a good buzz and feeling and wants to do real."
  • On Vesey, "I think Jimmy is a gamer. I look at his track record, a young man last year, coming in and playing the games he did, it was a challenge, he took the challenge head on. In the playoffs, when everything is more focused and more attention and more scrutiny, he took that pressure head on. He's a gamer and wants to prove and contribute to help a team win. He has shown leadership qualities in the past and I expect him to be even better this year."
  • On Jesper Fast's status, "he's right on schedule. He will start in Group C but we figured that at the end of October that would be his time frame and he is right on schedule. He is feeling real good, skating every day for I think three weeks, he is exactly where our Docs and medical staff thought he would be."
  • On the PP, "we've got different looks as far as shot possibilities with the right handers coming in, that will add to the different possibilities and options you can have on the PP. Shatty coming in and being a real solid PP performer is going to help our whole group. New season, we need to see who fits where and who does what but we will do that as training camp moves on."
  • On Lindy Ruff, "he will bring all of his experience, he has had a lot of years with different makeups as a team. He has been outstanding with the whole staff and just getting to know some of the guys here. There is a lot of experience I will tap into, the rest of the staff will tap into and also the players. A great addition to our group and I think he is looking forward to it and we are looking forward to his contribution to the success of our team."
  • On resting players at times during a season, "points are so hard to come by in this league, you always have to go with what you feel is your best lineup on a game to game basis. I believe that I was one of the first coaches to give the players their monthly calendar with the day off scheduled ahead of time. I was upset when the NHLPA forced us to give them four mandatory days because I know that some of the coaches in the league weren't doing that, old school coaches that believe that guys have to be on the ice everyday and I don't believe that is helpful. That rest factor, I think I have a good read on it, the complexity of that. We take a lot of pride in our schedule and travel schedule and allowing our guys to get more rest. I feel I got a pretty good pulse on that."
  • On the rule changes, "video guy better be good (laugh). That puts onus on both of our video guys, those are the guys ahead of time, as the play is moving on, are looking at if a play was offside because we don't have a lot of time. They are cutting down the time to make decisions. I don't mind it. We gotta make our decisions quickly, now it's a different part of the game and the only one on the ice that can't call a TO after icing the puck, rest for certain players would be
  • On Andrew Desjardins, "It's something that Gorts and Chris were looking at and talking to his agent. I don't know why, I didn't really ask them. For me, he's an experienced player, can play more than one position, lets see what he can do and what he will bring and go from there."

Dec 16, 2017; Boston, MA, USA; New York Rangers defenseman Brendan Smith (42) looks for the loose puck in front of goalie Henrik Lundqvist (30) during the first period at TD Garden. Mandatory Credit: Bob DeChiara-USA TODAY Sports (Bob DeChiara)
Dec 16, 2017; Boston, MA, USA; New York Rangers defenseman Brendan Smith (42) looks for the loose puck in front of goalie Henrik Lundqvist (30) during the first period at TD Garden. Mandatory Credit: Bob DeChiara-USA TODAY Sports (Bob DeChiara)

In the back to back set this past weekend, Henrik Lundqvist stopped 66 out of 70 shots and helped the Rangers pick up four points.

Alain Vigneault said, before and after the game, that he went with Lundqvist because it was a "big game" and added that he felt it was the "right thing to do." (MSG)

Vigneault added that the Rangers will need Ondrej Pavelec going forward but that going with Lundqvist was the right thing to do on Saturday. (MSG)

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Mar 9, 2017; Raleigh, NC, USA; New York Rangers head coach Alain Vigneault reacts during the third period against the Carolina Hurricanes at PNC Arena. The Hurricanes defeated the Rangers 4-3. Mandatory Credit: James Guillory-USA TODAY Sports (James Guillory)
Mar 9, 2017; Raleigh, NC, USA; New York Rangers head coach Alain Vigneault reacts during the third period against the Carolina Hurricanes at PNC Arena. The Hurricanes defeated the Rangers 4-3. Mandatory Credit: James Guillory-USA TODAY Sports (James Guillory)

Alain Vigneault met with the media on MSG following the Rangers OT win over the Bruins and said:

  • "our guys came up big tonight, it was a greasy, hard fought game. I really liked how we competed. We got some good saves at the right time, some good PKing. They came back from down 2 goals but this was our sixth game in nine days and we were able to grind it out and get it done in OT."
  • On the PK, "they got a real strong PP, a couple of pressure areas that we wanted to address tonight which we did and our guys did a pretty good job."
  • Happy you went back with Henrik, (smile) "like I said before, it was a big game and Henrik has been playing real well and I just thought it was the right thing to do. We are definitely going to need Pavs as we move forward but I felt that for tonight we needed to do this."
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Mats Zuccarello scored the game winning goal in OT for the Rangers on Saturday against the Bruins and was also awarded the Broadway Hat.

Zuccarello said after the game on MSG:

Tags: Mats Zuccarello
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Oct 10, 2017; New York, NY, USA; New York Rangers right wing Mats Zuccarello (36) plays the puck in front of St. Louis Blues center Tage Thompson (32) during the first period at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)
Oct 10, 2017; New York, NY, USA; New York Rangers right wing Mats Zuccarello (36) plays the puck in front of St. Louis Blues center Tage Thompson (32) during the first period at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)

Despite surrendering a 2-0 lead, the Rangers topped the Bruins, 3-2, in overtime thanks to a game-winning goal by Mats Zuccarello. >>Read more


First period:

  • 14:42 NYR Michael Grabner; Assists: Kevin Hayes, Brady Skjei

Second period:

Tags: Mats Zuccarello
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Oct 31, 2017; New York, NY, USA; A general view of Madison Square Garden before a game between the Vegas Golden Knights and New York Rangers. Mandatory Credit: Danny Wild-USA TODAY Sports (Danny Wild)
Oct 31, 2017; New York, NY, USA; A general view of Madison Square Garden before a game between the Vegas Golden Knights and New York Rangers. Mandatory Credit: Danny Wild-USA TODAY Sports (Danny Wild)

3:22PM: Alain Vigneault spoke before the game against the Bruins and said (NYR):

  • On the quick turnaround, "every team has these situations in a season and now it's our turn. You gotta play smart, keep fresh legs on the ice as much as you can and we will be ready for the challenge tonight."
  • Same lineup with Pavelec?, "same lineup but with Hank."
  • Why Hank, "big game" (smile)
  • On concern about Hank with the quick turnaround, "our most important game right now is today against Boston and Hank played real well last night and we are confident he will do it again for us today."
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Dec 13, 2017; Ottawa, Ontario, CAN; New York Rangers goalie Henrik Lundqvist (30) adjusts his mask after making a save on a shot from Ottawa Senators left wing Ryan Dzingel (not pictured) in the second period at Canadian Tire Centre. Mandatory Credit: Marc DesRosiers-USA TODAY Sports (Marc DesRosiers)
Dec 13, 2017; Ottawa, Ontario, CAN; New York Rangers goalie Henrik Lundqvist (30) adjusts his mask after making a save on a shot from Ottawa Senators left wing Ryan Dzingel (not pictured) in the second period at Canadian Tire Centre. Mandatory Credit: Marc DesRosiers-USA TODAY Sports (Marc DesRosiers)

BOSTON -- Having failed in their bid to end one series losing streak, the Boston Bruins take aim at another one when the New York Rangers visit Saturday.

The Bruins, who lost their 11th straight game to the Washington Capitals Thursday night, have dropped six in a row to the Rangers, their old Original Six rivals.

The records of the two expected goaltenders in this latest matchup reflect the way the series has gone.

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Dec 5, 2017; Pittsburgh, PA, USA; New York Rangers right wing Rick Nash (61) handles the puck against the Pittsburgh Penguins during the first period at PPG PAINTS Arena. New York won 4-3. Mandatory Credit: Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports (Charles LeClaire)
Dec 5, 2017; Pittsburgh, PA, USA; New York Rangers right wing Rick Nash (61) handles the puck against the Pittsburgh Penguins during the first period at PPG PAINTS Arena. New York won 4-3. Mandatory Credit: Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports (Charles LeClaire)

Rick Nash has 9 goals and 8 assists in 32 games this season to go along with a minus one rating, a shooting percentage of 8.8% and an average ice time of 16:55 per game.

Nash had 5 shots on goal last night including the game winner in the third period.

Nash said that on his chances earlier in the game he had tried to go glove side but Quick stopped the puck and that he changed things up in the third and went low blocker. (MSG)

Tags: Rick Nash
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Dec 15, 2017; New York, NY, USA; New York Rangers right wing Kevin Hayes (13) celebrates his goal against Los Angeles Kings goalie Jonathan Quick (32) with right wing Michael Grabner (40) and right wing Jesper Fast (17) during the second period at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports  (Brad Penner)
Dec 15, 2017; New York, NY, USA; New York Rangers right wing Kevin Hayes (13) celebrates his goal against Los Angeles Kings goalie Jonathan Quick (32) with right wing Michael Grabner (40) and right wing Jesper Fast (17) during the second period at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)

The Rangers had the lead three teams last night with Rick Nash's third period goal proving to be the game winner.

The Rangers had 23 hits and 25 blocked shots including three from Ryan McDonagh and three from Marc Staal.

McDonagh said that the Rangers got better at winning 50-50 battles as the game went on and prevented the Kings from getting their cycle game going. (NYR Game Notes)

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May 4, 2017; New York, NY, USA; New York Rangers head coach Alain Vigneault coaches against the Ottawa Senators during the third period of game four of the second round of the 2017 Stanley Cup Playoffs at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)
May 4, 2017; New York, NY, USA; New York Rangers head coach Alain Vigneault coaches against the Ottawa Senators during the third period of game four of the second round of the 2017 Stanley Cup Playoffs at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)

Alain Vigneault met with the media on MSG following the Rangers win over LA and said:

  • On Nash scoring, "there is no doubt. In the first period he had 3 great looks and unfortunately he wasn't able to hit the net and bury it but at the right time he came up real big for us."
  • On Nash getting looks but not scoring, "I know that at the end of the day those guys are supposed to score but there are other parts of the game that he was doing real well, in the first period he had a big blocked shot. This is a 200ft game and obviously our offensive guys have hot to put pucks in the net but need to play the full game. I thought that tonight, after a first period where they spent a lot of time in our end but didn't get a lot, in the second I thought we were better with our second guy getting in there. We were better on faceoffs, we went from 18% to 57% so we started with the puck more. We had a way better second period and in the third it was a hard fought game. They had one and Nasher was able to get that goal and that was huge for us.....onto Boston."
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 (Brad Penner)
(Brad Penner)

Rick Nash secured the late lead for the Rangers as they beat the Kings, 4-2, at Madison Square Garden >> Read More


First period: 

  • 10:23 NYR Chris Kreider (Power Play); Assists: Kevin Shattenkirk, David Desharnais

Second period: 

  • 3:46 LA Marian Gaborik; Assists: Jussi Jokinen
  • 14:43 NYR Kevin Hayes; Assists: Ryan McDonagh, Michael Grabner

Third period:

  • 7:59 LA Torrey Mitchell; Assists: Marian Gaborik, Jussi Jokinen
  • 16:33 NYR Rick Nash; Assists: Mats Zuccarello, Jimmy Vesey
Tags: Jimmy Vesey, Kevin Hayes, Rick Nash, Ryan McDonagh
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Dec 9, 2017; New York, NY, USA; New York Rangers goaltender Henrik Lundqvist (30) is congratulated by left wing J.T. Miller (10) after defeating the New Jersey Devils at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Andy Marlin-USA TODAY Sports (Andy Marlin)
Dec 9, 2017; New York, NY, USA; New York Rangers goaltender Henrik Lundqvist (30) is congratulated by left wing J.T. Miller (10) after defeating the New Jersey Devils at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Andy Marlin-USA TODAY Sports (Andy Marlin)

The Los Angeles Kings arrived in New York earlier this week to face the Metropolitan area's three squads as the hottest team in the NHL.

A 5-1 thumping at the hands of the New Jersey Devils on Tuesday, however, ended the Kings' eight-game winning streak and left them out in the cold.

Well, the "out in the cold" part was planned. >> Read more

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New York Rangers head coach Alain Vigneault gives instructions during an NHL hockey game against the Pittsburgh Penguins in Pittsburgh, Thursday, March 3, 2016. (AP Photo/Gene J. Puskar) (Gene J. Puskar/AP)
New York Rangers head coach Alain Vigneault gives instructions during an NHL hockey game against the Pittsburgh Penguins in Pittsburgh, Thursday, March 3, 2016. (AP Photo/Gene J. Puskar) (Gene J. Puskar/AP)

Alain Vigneault met with the media on Friday before tonight's game against LA and said (NYR):

  • On Mika, "he's following the protocol, skated on his own yesterday. As far as I know, I haven't done a lot of checking, he's improving. We have a practice on Monday and he will practice on Monday."
  • On the PP, "we haven't had a lot of PP opportunities in the last few games. PP hasn't been a big part of the games but in the opportunities that we have, I do agree, one of the things you would like to do is get more pucks at the net to get more scrambles and we haven't do a good enough job of that but we haven't had a lot of PPs in the last few games."
  • On the leadership group, "our game in Ottawa, we gave up 8 scoring chances in the game. Didn't play a bad game, didn't play a great game. We gave up an early goal in the first and an early goal in the third and in this league, when you are chasing, it makes it more difficult. We were chasing that one, made it very difficult and tonight is another opportunity to get a good start and play a full game."
  • On switching Grabner and Nash, "Grabs has been one of our best offensive players in the last few games in terms of chances and finishing. I just wanted to make a little tweak. Nasher has been getting some good looks and maybe with JT and Zucc that he will be able to finish on a couple of them."
  • On LA, "they don't give up a lot, I think they are 1 or 2 in goals against, 1st on the PK, they are playing some real good hockey right now. We are playing against one of the best teams in the NHL and we will have to be at our best tonight."
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Oct 31, 2017; New York, NY, USA; New York Rangers center Mika Zibanejad (93) smiles after being named the first star after defeating the Vegas Golden Knights at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Danny Wild-USA TODAY Sports (Danny Wild)
Oct 31, 2017; New York, NY, USA; New York Rangers center Mika Zibanejad (93) smiles after being named the first star after defeating the Vegas Golden Knights at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Danny Wild-USA TODAY Sports (Danny Wild)

12/15/17 | Alain Vigneault said that Zibanejad is still following the concussion protocol and that the plan is for him to practice with the team on Monday. (NYR)

12/14/17 | Sam Rosen noted during last night's broadcast that Mika Zibanejad skated on his own in New York on Wednesday.

Zibanejad had been skating for the last little while and practiced with the Rangers on Tuesday as a defensemen.

Tags: Mika Zibanejad
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 (Adam Hunger)
(Adam Hunger)

10:40AM: At the morning skate on Friday, the Rangers are using the following lines (Steve Zipay):

  • Chris Kreider, David Desharnais, Pavel Buchnevich
  • Rick Nash, JT Miller, Mats Zuccarello
  • Michael Grabner, Kevin Hayes, Jesper Fast
  • Paul Carey, Boo Nieves, Jimmy Vesey

Mika Zibanejad is skating as an extra.

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Dec 9, 2017; New York, NY, USA; New York Rangers goaltender Henrik Lundqvist (30) is congratulated by left wing J.T. Miller (10) after defeating the New Jersey Devils at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Andy Marlin-USA TODAY Sports (Andy Marlin)
Dec 9, 2017; New York, NY, USA; New York Rangers goaltender Henrik Lundqvist (30) is congratulated by left wing J.T. Miller (10) after defeating the New Jersey Devils at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Andy Marlin-USA TODAY Sports (Andy Marlin)

The Rangers enter tonight's game against the LA Kings with a record of 16-12-3, 35 points and are currently in the final wild card spot in the Eastern Conference.

Below the Rangers, Pittsburgh has 35 points 33 games, the Flyers have 33 points in 31 games and the Canadiens have 32 points in 32 games.

Above the Rangers, the Islanders have 37 points in 32 games, the Devils have 39 points in 31 games and Washington and Columbus both have 41, with Washington playing one more game.

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 (Adam Hunger)
(Adam Hunger)

The Rangers are 3 for their last 34 (13 games) on the PP and now rank 11th in the league.

The last two PP goals the Rangers scored were from David Desharnais, off a turnover from Scott Darling, and Paul Carey, with 40 seconds left while already up 4-1.

The Rangers are 2 for 19 on the PP since Mika Zibanejad was injured but were only 3 for 19 in the 8 games prior to his injury.

Kevin Shattenkirk only has 3 points, all assists, in the past 13 games and said recently about the PP that adjustments are made but that "it's still up to us to execute." (NY Post)

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Nov 22, 2017; Raleigh, NC, USA; New York Rangers forward Parel Buchnevich (89) waits for a face off against the Carolina Hurricanes at PNC Arena. The New York Rangers defeated the Carolina Hurricanes 6-1. Mandatory Credit: James Guillory-USA TODAY Sports (James Guillory)
Nov 22, 2017; Raleigh, NC, USA; New York Rangers forward Parel Buchnevich (89) waits for a face off against the Carolina Hurricanes at PNC Arena. The New York Rangers defeated the Carolina Hurricanes 6-1. Mandatory Credit: James Guillory-USA TODAY Sports (James Guillory)

Pavel Buchnevich has 11 goals and 12 assists this season in 31 games after only putting up 8 goals and 12 assists in 41 games last season.

Chris Kreider said that Buchnevich has "woven himself into the fabric of the team" and has never stopped learning on or off the ice. (SI)

Henrik Lundqvist said that Buchnevich is "more comfortably, more confident, physically stronger on the puck and more determined" this season. (SI)

Tags: Pavel Buchnevich
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 (Adam Hunger)
(Adam Hunger)

Road to the Winter Classic debuted last night on NBCSN and the following was said by and about the Rangers:

  • Alain Vigneault: "we have changed a little bit of our core, there is no doubt, by adding Shatty on D, giving a bigger role to Brady Skjei and up front there is no doubt that Grabs, in his second year, is more comfortable."
  • Jimmy Vesey: "it wasn't really a great start but we knew we had a talented and skilled team and now we are clicking and I think we have four lines that can score and we are playing with confidence. It's been a good stretch for us."
  • AV: "It starts with our goaltender. When he is on top of his game it just seems like our whole game is in tune, from the defensive part to the offensive part. I've been very lucky to get the opportunity to coach the Rangers. We have had some good teams and we came close in my first year. We are working to try and get the big prize, obviously."
  • Kevin Shattenkirk says that growing up he was a Rangers fan and that his experiences at MSG as kid helped him fall in love with hockey even more.
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Dec 13, 2017; Ottawa, Ontario, CAN; New York Rangers right wing Rick Nash (61) battles with Ottawa Senators center Nate Thompson (17) for control of the puck in the first period at Canadian Tire Centre. Mandatory Credit: Marc DesRosiers-USA TODAY Sports (Marc DesRosiers)
Dec 13, 2017; Ottawa, Ontario, CAN; New York Rangers right wing Rick Nash (61) battles with Ottawa Senators center Nate Thompson (17) for control of the puck in the first period at Canadian Tire Centre. Mandatory Credit: Marc DesRosiers-USA TODAY Sports (Marc DesRosiers)

Alain Vigneault said after last night's game that the Rangers did not execute the plays in front of them, on the first two Ottawa goals, and paid for it.

He added that Ottawa's goal 8 seconds into the third period also "hurt" the Rangers.

Henrik Lundqvist said that the Rangers had a good effort against the Senators but needed to have more awareness at the start of each period. (MSG)

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May 4, 2017; New York, NY, USA; New York Rangers head coach Alain Vigneault coaches against the Ottawa Senators during the third period of game four of the second round of the 2017 Stanley Cup Playoffs at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)
May 4, 2017; New York, NY, USA; New York Rangers head coach Alain Vigneault coaches against the Ottawa Senators during the third period of game four of the second round of the 2017 Stanley Cup Playoffs at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)

Alain Vigneault met with the media on MSG following the loss to Ottawa and said:

  • On the third, "it had more to do with execution than confidence, we gave up an early goal in the first, an early goal in the third. We know this team well, how they defend and there are some plays in front of you that you have to make and their first two goals we didn't make those plays through the neutral zone and came back to make us pay. There is no doubt that that early goal in the third hurt us."
  • On the neutral zone, "the first two goals, we didn't execute the play that was in front of us and turned around and made us pay for it."
  • Has the momentum for the team stalled, "it's a tough league and every game is different. Tonight we had a real strong game plan where we had to execute in a couple of areas, we didn't and they made us pay for it. We weren't able to make them pay for their mistakes."
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Dec 13, 2017; Ottawa, Ontario, CAN; New York Rangers goalie Henrik Lundqvist (30) adjusts his mask after making a save on a shot from Ottawa Senators left wing Ryan Dzingel (18) in the second period at Canadian Tire Centre. Mandatory Credit: Marc DesRosiers-USA TODAY Sports (Marc DesRosiers)
Dec 13, 2017; Ottawa, Ontario, CAN; New York Rangers goalie Henrik Lundqvist (30) adjusts his mask after making a save on a shot from Ottawa Senators left wing Ryan Dzingel (18) in the second period at Canadian Tire Centre. Mandatory Credit: Marc DesRosiers-USA TODAY Sports (Marc DesRosiers)

Henrik Lundqvist met with the media on MSG following the loss to Ottawa and said:

  • On the third period goal, "it's the winning goal, it's the difference. It's hard to come back from two goals behind. We did a real good try, we had a good effort and a couple of good looks but we have to start the period better, just more awareness for all of us. I feel like this is a game that we should win but they find a way to get a couple of goals where we were not in the right place."
  • Were you screened on the second goal, "yea, it was a tough play and Smitty lost his stick, tried to get out...I didn't pick it up until it was in the net. It happens."
Tags: Henrik Lundqvist
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Dec 13, 2017; Ottawa, Ontario, CAN; New York Rangers goalie Henrik Lundqvist (30) adjusts his mask after making a save on a shot from Ottawa Senators left wing Ryan Dzingel (not pictured) in the second period at Canadian Tire Centre. Mandatory Credit: Marc DesRosiers-USA TODAY Sports (Marc DesRosiers)
Dec 13, 2017; Ottawa, Ontario, CAN; New York Rangers goalie Henrik Lundqvist (30) adjusts his mask after making a save on a shot from Ottawa Senators left wing Ryan Dzingel (not pictured) in the second period at Canadian Tire Centre. Mandatory Credit: Marc DesRosiers-USA TODAY Sports (Marc DesRosiers)

The Rangers dropped their second straight game, falling to the Ottawa Senators, 3-2, on Wednesday night at the Canadian Tire Centre. Michael Grabner and Pavel Buchnevich tallied for New York. >> Box score


First period: 

  • 4:01 OTT Bobby Ryan; Assists: Mark Stone

Second period: 

  • 3:57 NYR Michael Grabner; Assists: Mats Zuccarello, Ryan McDonagh
  • 15:08 OTT Cody Cedi; Assists: Matt Duchene, Ryan

Third period:

  • :08 OTT Zack Smith; Assists: Tom Pyatt
  • 4:40 NYR Pavel Buchnevich; Assists: Chris Kreider, David Desharnais
Tags: Michael Grabner, Pavel Buchnevich
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Nov 11, 2017; New York, NY, USA; New York Rangers celebrate after scoring a goal against Edmonton Oilers during second period at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports (Noah K. Murray)
Nov 11, 2017; New York, NY, USA; New York Rangers celebrate after scoring a goal against Edmonton Oilers during second period at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports (Noah K. Murray)

 OTTAWA -- On the way home from their longest road trip of the season, the Ottawa Senators scraped bottom and suffered more damage.

When they face the New York Rangers at Canadian Tire Centre on Wednesday, the Senators will be just 24 hours removed from their fifth straight loss, a 3-2 setback at the hands of the Eastern Conference's last-place Buffalo Sabres.

Over a seven-stop, 15-day tour that began Nov. 29 in Montreal, that left the Senators with a 1-5-1 record and just three points ahead of the Sabres. While their season is not yet a write-off, they are at a loss for answers. >> Read more

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Sep 20, 2017; New York, NY, USA; New York Rangers center Filip Chytil (72) celebrates his game winning overtime goal against the New Jersey Devils at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Danny Wild-USA TODAY Sports (Danny Wild)
Sep 20, 2017; New York, NY, USA; New York Rangers center Filip Chytil (72) celebrates his game winning overtime goal against the New Jersey Devils at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Danny Wild-USA TODAY Sports (Danny Wild)

5:46PM: Alain Vigneault met with the media in Ottawa prior to tonight's game and was asked about Filip Chytil, saying (NYR):

  • Why send Chytil to the World Juniors, "my experience at the World Juniors, I've been there twice. For junior players, it's one of the best experiences that you can have and for a coach it's the same thing. You talk about representing your country. Talking about playing in high pressure environments, important games. I think that for the development of any young player, if you have the opportunity to represent your country it's something you can't pass on. Filip was given the opportunity and I think it will make him a better player."
  • Are you surprised Chytil hasn't been called back up yet, "we've been, touch wood, fairly healthy up front, other than Mika in the middle. He is going through the development of any young player. He is going through it at this time at a very young age against men, I shouldn't say men, there are a lot of younger, 21-22 year olds. He's been, from what I understand talking to Keith and Dru who is following Hartford very closely and Jeff, he's coming along real well and we know we have a player there with a lot of potential."

11:58AM: The Rangers have announced that they have officially loaned Filip Chytil to the Czech Republic team for the World Junior Championship later this month.

Chytil has 5 goals and 7 assists in 15 games for Hartford this season but only has one point in the last 6 games.

He only has points in 2 of his last 9 games for Hartford.

Tags: Filip Chytil
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Oct 13, 2017; Columbus, OH, USA; New York Rangers goalie Henrik Lundqvist (30) makes a save in net against the Columbus Blue Jackets in the third period at Nationwide Arena. Mandatory Credit: Aaron Doster-USA TODAY Sports (Aaron Doster)
Oct 13, 2017; Columbus, OH, USA; New York Rangers goalie Henrik Lundqvist (30) makes a save in net against the Columbus Blue Jackets in the third period at Nationwide Arena. Mandatory Credit: Aaron Doster-USA TODAY Sports (Aaron Doster)

Henrik Lundqvist is expected to start tonight against the Senators after Ondrej Pavelec started on Monday against the Stars.

Pavelec and Steve Kampfer were the only Rangers on the ice this morning. (Cyrgalis)

Today's morning skate was designated just for the extra players that are not in tonight's lineup. (NYR Game Notes)

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 (Adam Hunger)
(Adam Hunger)

Gary Bettman projects that the salary cap for the 2018-19 season could be between $78 million and $82 million.

The salary cap is currently $75 million and Bettman said that the league has "never been healthier." (ESPN)

With an upper limit of $75 million, the Rangers are projected to have $23.5 million in cap space but with Brady Skjei, Boo Nieves, Jimmy Vesey, Kevin Hayes and JT Miller as RFAs needing new contracts. (Cap Friendly)

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New York Rangers head coach Alain Vigneault gives instructions during an NHL hockey game against the Pittsburgh Penguins in Pittsburgh, Thursday, March 3, 2016. (AP Photo/Gene J. Puskar) (Gene J. Puskar/AP)
New York Rangers head coach Alain Vigneault gives instructions during an NHL hockey game against the Pittsburgh Penguins in Pittsburgh, Thursday, March 3, 2016. (AP Photo/Gene J. Puskar) (Gene J. Puskar/AP)

Alain Vigneault met with the media on Tuesday after practice and said (NYR):

  • How was practice, "practice was good. It was good focus, good execution and guys worked hard and our guys are on the way to Ottawa to try and win a game."
  • On the lines staying the same, "I would say to you that our body of work lately. I think that for this last little stretch for over a month we have been pretty close to one of the top two teams in terms of winning percentage in the NHL. In that big body of work we have had some real good moments, some other games where a period might have been more challenging. We just came from Washington and I went to see Washington against Chicago and in the second period, Washington wins that game 6-2, but they don't touch the puck. It seems like this year, more than ever, that teams can take over a period. Last night we played a team that took over two periods but our body of work lately has been good and we will go to Ottawa with the same lines we have been using for a while and try to come up with a win."
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Oct 7, 2017; Toronto, Ontario, CAN; New York Rangers center Mika Zibanejad (93) skates around the net with the puck against the Toronto Maple Leafs at Air Canada Centre. Mandatory Credit: Tom Szczerbowski-USA TODAY Sports (Tom Szczerbowski)
Oct 7, 2017; Toronto, Ontario, CAN; New York Rangers center Mika Zibanejad (93) skates around the net with the puck against the Toronto Maple Leafs at Air Canada Centre. Mandatory Credit: Tom Szczerbowski-USA TODAY Sports (Tom Szczerbowski)

12/12/17 | Vigneault said that Zibanejad looked "real sharp" skating as a defensemen today and that he may start seeing some time back in the middle during Thursday's practice. (NYR)

12/11/17 | 1:20PM: Zibanejad spoke with the media on Monday about how he is feeling and how everything went down.

10:40AM: Zibanejad is on the ice at the Rangers morning skate today. (NYR)

Tags: Mika Zibanejad
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Oct 14, 2017; New York, NY, USA; New York Rangers goalie Ondrej Pavelec (31) during the first period against the New Jersey Devils at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Anthony Gruppuso-USA TODAY Sports
		 (Anthony Gruppuso)
Oct 14, 2017; New York, NY, USA; New York Rangers goalie Ondrej Pavelec (31) during the first period against the New Jersey Devils at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Anthony Gruppuso-USA TODAY Sports (Anthony Gruppuso)

Ondrej Pavelec made 44 saves on 45 shots for the Rangers last night in their shootout loss to Dallas.

He was the first Ranger since Dan Blackburn in 2001 to have more than 40 saves in two consecutive starts.

Pavelec said that he felt "really good" was able to see pucks and that the chances Dallas had early helped him get into the game. (NYR Game Notes)

Alain Vigneault said that there were only two positives out of last night's game, that "Pavs played unreal" and that because of his performance they were able to pick up a point. (MSG)

Tags: Ondrej Pavelec
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 (Adam Hunger)
(Adam Hunger)

In the first two periods last night, the Rangers were out attempted 64 to 23 in all situations and 54 to 20 at 5 on 5. (Natural Stat Trick)

By period last night the Rangers had 5 shots on goal in the first, 5 in the second, 9 in the third and 6 in OT. (Natural Stat Trick)

Ryan McDonagh said that the first two periods for the Rangers last night were a "total embarrassment" and that the Rangers "didn't show up" for 40 minutes. (MSG)

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Nov 2, 2017; Tampa, FL, USA;New York Rangers head coach Alain Vigneault during the third period against the Tampa Bay Lightning at Amalie Arena. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports (Kim Klement)
Nov 2, 2017; Tampa, FL, USA;New York Rangers head coach Alain Vigneault during the third period against the Tampa Bay Lightning at Amalie Arena. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports (Kim Klement)

Alain Vigneault met with the media on MSG following the Rangers loss to Dallas and said:

  • On Pavelec, "I don't think anyone in our dressing room doesn't know that other than him, we didn't play real well tonight. There are two positives, Pavs played unreal and because of his performance we were able to get a point. Other than that....we weren't good."
  • "I think I summarized it pretty good there. Thanks guys."
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 (Adam Hunger)
(Adam Hunger)

Rick Nash scored in the third period to tie the game and help the Rangers avoid a shutout, but the Stars ultimately won in a shoout, 2-1.  << Box score

First period: 

  • N/A

Second period: 

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Oct 31, 2017; New York, NY, USA; A general view of Madison Square Garden before a game between the Vegas Golden Knights and New York Rangers. Mandatory Credit: Danny Wild-USA TODAY Sports (Danny Wild)
Oct 31, 2017; New York, NY, USA; A general view of Madison Square Garden before a game between the Vegas Golden Knights and New York Rangers. Mandatory Credit: Danny Wild-USA TODAY Sports (Danny Wild)

NEW YORK -- The Dallas Stars recently put together five straight wins and were feeling good about their performances.

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New York Rangers head coach Alain Vigneault talks to reporters after a practice in Tarrytown, N.Y., Tuesday, April 25, 2017. The Rangers have advanced to the second round of the Stanley Cup playoffs and will open the series against the Ottawa Senators on Thursday. (AP Photo/Seth Wenig) (Seth Wenig/AP)
New York Rangers head coach Alain Vigneault talks to reporters after a practice in Tarrytown, N.Y., Tuesday, April 25, 2017. The Rangers have advanced to the second round of the Stanley Cup playoffs and will open the series against the Ottawa Senators on Thursday. (AP Photo/Seth Wenig) (Seth Wenig/AP)

Alain Vigneault met with the media earlier today prior to tonight's game against Dallas and said (NYR):

  • On using Lindy to help prepare against his old team, "there is no doubt that we talked about their team, they have made some personnel changes and obviously with Hitch in there, he has his own tendencies that he likes his team to do. At the end of the day our job as coaches is the same as every game, get the players information for them to be able to execute and play hard."
  • On Pavelec, "I expect him to play well. He gave us a good game against Pitt and we expect, like we always do from our goaltenders, a chance to win the game. We have to be good in front of him and we will play hard."
  • On this game for Pavelec, "looked at the schedule, 6 in 9, I told you that in the 6 in 9 that he would get two and this is one of them."
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Apr 20, 2017; Montreal, Quebec, CAN; New York Rangers forward Mika Zibanejad (93) plays the puck during the second period in game five of the first round of the 2017 Stanley Cup Playoffs against the Montreal Canadiens at the Bell Centre. Mandatory Credit: Eric Bolte-USA TODAY Sports (Eric Bolte)
Apr 20, 2017; Montreal, Quebec, CAN; New York Rangers forward Mika Zibanejad (93) plays the puck during the second period in game five of the first round of the 2017 Stanley Cup Playoffs against the Montreal Canadiens at the Bell Centre. Mandatory Credit: Eric Bolte-USA TODAY Sports (Eric Bolte)

1:05PM: Mika Zibanejad spoke with the media on Monday and said (NYR):

  • "it's good to be back with the guys and see faces out there, it's always positive."
  • How do you feel, "it's getting better. We are following the procedures that need to be done and we are taking it day by day and we will take it from there."
  • Do you think you will be able to practice tomorrow, "we will see how I feel today. I can't look ahead too much in a situation like this. I felt good being out there again, we will see how the rest of the day goes and what else we are doing today and go from there."
  • Have you been cleared for contact, "I don't know, nothing new that I have been told so last time. I wasn't wearing a red jersey today so that was good."
Tags: Mika Zibanejad
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Oct 14, 2017; New York, NY, USA; New York Rangers goalie Ondrej Pavelec (31) during the first period against the New Jersey Devils at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Anthony Gruppuso-USA TODAY Sports
		 (Anthony Gruppuso)
Oct 14, 2017; New York, NY, USA; New York Rangers goalie Ondrej Pavelec (31) during the first period against the New Jersey Devils at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Anthony Gruppuso-USA TODAY Sports (Anthony Gruppuso)

12:57PM: Pavelec spoke this morning and said (NYR):

  • "it's one game right now and that is what I focus on. The Pittsburgh game helped me with my confidence. I got the win and it was good for me and now it's a new day and a new game. It's going to be a different game."
  • On starting at home, "it's fun to play in this building but for for me it doesn't matter to me if I start at home or away. The routine is the same, not a big difference but it's really fun to play at MSG."
  • On building off the Pitt win, "that helped me a lot and I felt really good but that was the past. Today is a new day and a new game and I need to be ready again."
  • On playing Dallas, "really good team, that offensive power is really good. They have a lot of skill players. To be successful we need to be disciplined."
Tags: Ondrej Pavelec
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Nov 4, 2017; Sunrise, FL, USA; New York Rangers right wing Michael Grabner (40) celebrates his goal as Florida Panthers defenseman Aaron Ekblad (5) looks on in the third period at BB&T Center. Mandatory Credit: Robert Mayer-USA TODAY Sports (Robert Mayer)
Nov 4, 2017; Sunrise, FL, USA; New York Rangers right wing Michael Grabner (40) celebrates his goal as Florida Panthers defenseman Aaron Ekblad (5) looks on in the third period at BB&T Center. Mandatory Credit: Robert Mayer-USA TODAY Sports (Robert Mayer)

Larry Brooks says that now is the time for the Rangers to start discussing a potential contract extension with Michael Grabner. (NY Post)

Grabner,30, is a UFA at the end of the season and has a cap hit this season of $1.65 million.

Brooks wonders if a three-year deal for $10 million would be enough to keep Grabner with the Rangers and prevent him from becoming a UFA. (NY Post)

Over the past two years Grabner is 23rd overall in goals scored and has the 11th best shooting percentage. (Hockey Ref)

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 (Geoff Burke)
(Geoff Burke)

12/10/17 | Alain Vigneault said on Saturday night of Fast, "I've always thought of him as a hard-working, two-way hockey player that is one of our guys that plays the right way in all situations. He is a real good example, he never gives up a play, puts his body on the line to get the job done. I'm hoping that will rub off on a couple of other guys because he is a real good example there." (MSG)

10/9/17 | 10PM: Rick Nash on Jesper Fast after the win over NJ, "he's like a hidden secret. Not too many people around the league know about him but he can do it all and jump up and down the lineup. He's a pretty special player and fun to play with an he is feeling it right now."

Tags: Jesper Fast
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Oct 23, 2017; New York, NY, USA; New York Rangers goalie Henrik Lundqvist (30) makes a save against the San Jose Sharks during the third period at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)
Oct 23, 2017; New York, NY, USA; New York Rangers goalie Henrik Lundqvist (30) makes a save against the San Jose Sharks during the third period at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)

Henrik Lundqvist played both weekend games for the Rangers, stopping 36 of 40 shots on Friday and 26 of 28 shots on Saturday.

Over his last eight appearances, he has posted a 6-1-0 record, along with a 2.04 GAA, a .936 SV%, and 1 SO. (NYR Game Notes)

Lundqvist was asked if he would like to play in every game and said that if it were up to him the answer would be "yes."

He said that overall the Rangers take things day by day and that right now he feels "really good."

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Dec 9, 2017; New York, NY, USA; New York Rangers right wing Mats Zuccarello (36) is congratulated after scoring a goal against the New Jersey Devils during the third period at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Andy Marlin-USA TODAY Sports (Andy Marlin)
Dec 9, 2017; New York, NY, USA; New York Rangers right wing Mats Zuccarello (36) is congratulated after scoring a goal against the New Jersey Devils during the third period at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Andy Marlin-USA TODAY Sports (Andy Marlin)

Mats Zuccarello scored two goals last night and has points in 7 of the last 9 games.

Zuccarello has 13 points in the past 12 games and a plus 14 rating in the past 19 games. (NYR Game Notes)

He put the Rangers up 3-1 when he forced a turnover just inside the offensive zone and scored on a breakaway.

Tags: Mats Zuccarello
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Dec 9, 2017; New York, NY, USA; New York Rangers goaltender Henrik Lundqvist (30) is congratulated by left wing J.T. Miller (10) after defeating the New Jersey Devils at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Andy Marlin-USA TODAY Sports (Andy Marlin)
Dec 9, 2017; New York, NY, USA; New York Rangers goaltender Henrik Lundqvist (30) is congratulated by left wing J.T. Miller (10) after defeating the New Jersey Devils at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Andy Marlin-USA TODAY Sports (Andy Marlin)

Ryan McDonagh said that last night's game against New Jersey felt like a big game, especially after what happened on Friday against Washington. (NYR Game Notes)

McDonagh said that he liked how the Rangers played against NJ and that they were in control and in sync on the ice. (NYR Game Notes)

JT Miller said that the Rangers executed well, put the Devils on their heels and had a good five-man forecheck. (NYR Game Notes)

Henrik Lundqvist said that this was one of the Rangers better games as of late and that it was "what we needed" after the loss on Friday to the Capitals. (NYR Game Notes)

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Mar 9, 2017; Raleigh, NC, USA; New York Rangers head coach Alain Vigneault reacts during the third period against the Carolina Hurricanes at PNC Arena. The Hurricanes defeated the Rangers 4-3. Mandatory Credit: James Guillory-USA TODAY Sports (James Guillory)
Mar 9, 2017; Raleigh, NC, USA; New York Rangers head coach Alain Vigneault reacts during the third period against the Carolina Hurricanes at PNC Arena. The Hurricanes defeated the Rangers 4-3. Mandatory Credit: James Guillory-USA TODAY Sports (James Guillory)

Alain Vigneault met with the media following tonight's win over the Devils and said (MSG):

  • On the game, "we got off to a good start, had a real solid first period. Zuccy's goal was obviously a turning point, not sure if it was PK goal or just at the end there but it was a great individual effort and real good shot and in the third we did what we had to do to get the two points."
  • On the home games, "I don't think you can put your finger on one specific thing. I know we have gotten off to better start and there is no doubt that the play in front of Hank and the play of Hank has been better. For quite some time we have been playing some pretty good hockey. It's a tough league and every game is competitive and hard fought. It was a battle and there were a lot of one on one, hard, gritty, greasy situations and our guys did what they had to do to win the game."
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Dec 9, 2017; New York, NY, USA; New York Rangers right wing Mats Zuccarello (36) reacts after scoring a goal against the New Jersey Devils during the second period at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Andy Marlin-USA TODAY Sports (Andy Marlin)
Dec 9, 2017; New York, NY, USA; New York Rangers right wing Mats Zuccarello (36) reacts after scoring a goal against the New Jersey Devils during the second period at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Andy Marlin-USA TODAY Sports (Andy Marlin)

Mats Zuccarello was awarded the Broadway Hat after scoring twice in the Rangers win over the Devils on Saturday.

Click below to see Zuccarello with the Broadwat Hat as well as his goals

Tags: Mats Zuccarello
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Dec 9, 2017; New York, NY, USA; The New York Rangers celebrate after defeating the New Jersey Devils at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Andy Marlin-USA TODAY Sports (Andy Marlin)
Dec 9, 2017; New York, NY, USA; The New York Rangers celebrate after defeating the New Jersey Devils at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Andy Marlin-USA TODAY Sports (Andy Marlin)

Mats Zuccarello nets twice as the Rangers beat the Devils 5-2 << Box score

First period: 

  • 6:14 NYR Jimmy Vessey; Assists: Boo Nieves, Paul Carey

Second period: 

  • 9:42 NYR Jesper Fast; Assist: Rick Nash
  • 13:45 NJD Damon Severson; Assists: Blake Coleman, Stefan Noesen
  • 16:03 NYR Mats Zuccarello (unassisted)

Third period:

  • 6:21 NYR Mats Zuccarello; Assists: Ryan McDonagh, J.T. Miller
  • 6:34 NJD Miles Wood; Assists: Pavel Zacha, Will Butcher
  • 11:59 NYR Kevin Hayes; Assist: Rick Nash
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 (Brad Penner)
(Brad Penner)

The New York Rangers and New Jersey Devils will renew their rivalry when they meet at Madison Square Garden on Saturday night.

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Oct 8, 2017; New York, NY, USA; New York Rangers goaltender Henrik Lundqvist (30) makes a blocker save against the Montreal Canadiens during the first period at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Andy Marlin-USA TODAY Sports (Andy Marlin)
Oct 8, 2017; New York, NY, USA; New York Rangers goaltender Henrik Lundqvist (30) makes a blocker save against the Montreal Canadiens during the first period at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Andy Marlin-USA TODAY Sports (Andy Marlin)

5:42PM: Asked why Lundqvist is getting the start, Vigneault said "big game. First game of the year against Colorado was a big game. Tonight is a big game Monday against Dallas is going to be a big guy. I mentioned to Glen quite a few times that the game has changed a lot over the years. Back when he was coaching in the league they made the playoffs in October and early November. Now it's a battle, I don't think I have ever seen the league as competitive as it is this year. It should be a lot of fun and I thought Hank played well last night after missing in Pitt and decided to go back with him." (NYR)

Asked if his plan was to go with Henrik back to back, Vigneault said "it wasn't my plan not to play him in Pitt. He got sick....he's going tonight." (NYR)

Tags: Henrik Lundqvist
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 (Geoff Burke)
(Geoff Burke)

Henrik Lundqvist said that last night's loss was "disappointing, extremely disappointing."

Lundqvist said that it was "extremely disappointing" to lose after battling back against a "real good team."

Ryan McDonagh said that the loss "stings" and that while the Rangers made a comeback they let the Capitals make some plays and "they burned us." (NY Post)

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May 2, 2017; New York, NY, USA; New York Rangers head coach Alain Vigneault coaches against the Ottawa Senators during the third period of game three of the second round of the 2017 Stanley Cup Playoffs at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)
May 2, 2017; New York, NY, USA; New York Rangers head coach Alain Vigneault coaches against the Ottawa Senators during the third period of game three of the second round of the 2017 Stanley Cup Playoffs at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)

Alain Vigneault met with the media on MSG following the Rangers loss to the Caps and said:

  • What did you see, "I didn't like our first period. We didn't play well at all but we responded with a much better second period. We had some good looks, their goalie made some big saves. We got that goal at the end of the second period and we were able to tie it in the third. Then we have a control breakout, a control situation, we know what their control forecheck is going to be and one of our guys doesn't do the right route, turnover and the turnover ends up in the back of our net. Unfortunately it's something that we didn't do as well as we should have and it cost us and after that we couldn't tie it up."
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Oct 13, 2017; Columbus, OH, USA; New York Rangers goalie Henrik Lundqvist (30) makes a save in net against the Columbus Blue Jackets in the third period at Nationwide Arena. Mandatory Credit: Aaron Doster-USA TODAY Sports (Aaron Doster)
Oct 13, 2017; Columbus, OH, USA; New York Rangers goalie Henrik Lundqvist (30) makes a save in net against the Columbus Blue Jackets in the third period at Nationwide Arena. Mandatory Credit: Aaron Doster-USA TODAY Sports (Aaron Doster)

Henrik Lundqvist spoke with the media following the Rangers loss to Washington and said (MSG):

  • What did you see, "two teams that played pretty hard. First period was definitely their period, they had a lot of momentum. I think we turned it to our side in the second and battled back and a couple of big goals. It's disappointing, extremely disappointing. I don't know what to say. I have to look at that third goal. It's right there, 2 on 2 in front of the net but we couldn't get a hold of the puck. It's extremely disappointing with how we battled back against a real good team."
  • On the disappointment, "I thought we battled hard and personally I battled hard to try to help the team get back in the game. In the end it's a play in front where we can't track it down and they get hold of it and it's a 3-2 game. It happens but still it hurts when you work so hard to get back into it."
Tags: Henrik Lundqvist
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