The New York Rangers are facing the Minnesota Wild Tuesday night. Both teams are battling for position for the playoffs. Here is a preview of what’s to come between the Rangers and the Wild.
Their Last Matchup
The last time these two teams played each other was on January 28, when the Rangers lost 3-2. The Rangers scored two goals in the first period, the first by Barclay Goodrow and the second by Chris Kreider. Ryan Strome and Mika Zibanejad got assists on the goals, while Jacob Trouba assisted on both.
It went downhill for the Rangers at this point. The Wild scored three consecutive goals, two in the second period and one early in the third. Kevin Fiala, Mats Zuccarello and Frederick Gaudreau scored, while Ryan Hartman, Jordie Benn, Kirill Kaprizov, Matt Boldy, Fiala and Zuccarello got assists.
The Rangers were outshot 34-27 and the Wild capitalized on their power play going 1-for-2. The Wild were also more physical, outhitting the Rangers 23-18. On a positive note, the Rangers were good defensively in that they blocked 16 shots, doubling the Wild’s eight.
Where They Stand
The Rangers are tied for second in the Metropolitan Division with 77 points. They have one game at hand to the Pittsburgh Penguins, also tied with 77 points. All Metro teams are playing catch-up to the Carolina Hurricanes who are first in the division with 83 points. The Hurricanes are a hot team and have won two straight, getting points in nine out of their last 10 games.
The Rangers are doing their best to slowly creep up on the Hurricanes. They won three games in a row, outscoring their opponents 12-5. The Rangers are 7-2-1 in their last 10 games.
If the playoffs started right now, the Rangers would be facing the Penguins with a home-ice advantage. Things have to play out and the rest of the season has to come to a close before the final playoffs spots are set.
The Wild are tied for third in the Central Division with the Dallas Stars at 67 points. The Wild are not doing great at the moment with a record of 2-8-0 in their last 10 games. They are 16-6-1 at home, which is a great advantage for them, although the Rangers are pretty good away at 17-10-2. It will be an interesting game.
Who and What to Look out for
The usual players to watch out for on the Rangers are Kreider, Adam Fox, Zibanejad and Artemi Panarin. In Fox’s last five games, he has six points, all of them assists. Kreider has four goals. Trouba’s defensive style is always something to watch out for, as he will hit anyone anywhere on the ice. He is always involved in one way or another.
Kaprizov and Fiala have been on a role as well. Kaprizov has eight points in his last five games, five of them are goals. Fiala has five assists.
The Wild better hope to stay out of the penalty box because the Rangers are fifth on the power play. If the Rangers get a penalty, they are also good at killing it. They are seventh in penalty kill percentage. However, the Wild average 3.69 goals per game, which is third in the league. The Rangers are just under three and rank 18th. On the other hand, the Rangers are second for goals allowed at 2.45. The Wild are 22nd at 3.22.
What will happen?
It can be anybody’s game. The Wild will be looking to rebound after losing two straight, while the Rangers are looking to continue winning.
The Rangers will also be looking for a little revenge from their last game. After losing 3-2 to the Wild, the Rangers will look for a win, inching closer to the Hurricanes.
What is going to happen? Will the Rangers win streak continue? Or will the Wild’s pure determination cause them to outplay the Rangers? The game is on Tuesday night at 8 p.m. ET. Watch to find out what happens.
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