Pregame Notes: Rangers Vs. Carolina

2013-14: Game No. 13

Saturday, 11.02.2013 / 11:46 AM New York Rangers

NEW YORK RANGERS vs. CAROLINA HURRICANES

Saturday, Nov. 2, 7:00 p.m. ET

Madison Square Garden – New York, NY

Rangers: 5-7-0 (10 pts)

Hurricanes: 4-5-3 (11 pts)

TONIGHT’S GAME

The Rangers will face-off against the Carolina Hurricanes tonight, Nov. 2, at Madison Square Garden (7:00 p.m. — TV: MSG Network; Radio: ESPN 98.7), as they continue a four-game homestand. The Blueshirts currently rank fifth in the Metropolitan Division standings, and 10th in the Eastern Conference, with a record of 5-7-0 (10 pts). The Rangers enter the contest having defeated the Sabres, 2-0, on Thursday at Madison Square Garden, for their second straight win and third in the last four games. The Hurricanes are currently 4-5-3 (11 pts) and rank seventh in the Eastern Conference, and have lost their last three games entering their contest tonight against Tampa Bay. Following tonight’s contest, the Rangers will return to action when they face-off against the Anaheim Ducks on Monday, Nov. 4, at Madison Square Garden (7:30 p.m.), in their fifth game in eight nights.

RANGERS vs. HURRICANES:

All-Time: 62-48-7-2 overall (37-17-4-2 at home; 25-31-3-0 on the road)

2013-14: tonight is the first of four meetings this season, and the first of two meetings at Madison Square Garden.

Last Season: New York was 3-0-0 overall (1-0-0 at home; 2-0-0 on the road). Two of the three contests were decided by one goal, including a 2-1 shootout victory on Mar. 18 at Madison Square Garden. The Rangers' power play was 3-11 (27.3%) in the series, while the penalty kill was 9-10 (90.0%). Derek Stepan led all skaters in scoring with three goals and five points in three games, while Michael Del Zotto and Carl Hagelin tied for the series lead with three assists apiece. Ryan Callahan registered four points (two goals, two assists) in the series, including two game-winning goals. Henrik Lundqvist was 3-0-0 with a 1.60 GAA and .950 Sv%.

The Rangers enter the contest with an eight-game winning streak against the Hurricanes, dating back to Feb. 22, 2011. New York has out-scored Carolina, 31-16, during the streak.

The Blueshirts have won each of their last four games against the Hurricanes at Madison Square Garden, having out-scored Carolina, 13-5, over the span

New York is 1-1-0 at home; Carolina is 3-3-0 on the road

New York is 2-2-0 vs. Metropolitan Division opponents; Carolina is 3-2-0 vs. Metropolitan Division opponents

New York lists no former Hurricanes on their roster

Carolina lists two former Rangers on their roster: Radek Dvorak (1999-00 - 2002-03); Manny Malhotra (1998-99 - 2001-02)

INDIVIDUAL CAREER LEADERS vs. HURRICANES:

Henrik Lundqvist – 23 GP, 14-8-1, 1 SO, 2.26 GAA

Brad Richards – 53 GP, 15-32-47

Ryan Callahan – 18 GP, 7-5-12

Derek Stepan – 11 GP, 3-5-8

Dan Girardi – 25 GP, 3-4-7

SPECIAL TEAMS:

The Rangers have tallied at least one power play goal (3-7, 42.9%) in each of the last two games, while holding opponents scoreless on the penalty kill (4-4) over the span

The Rangers' power play is 4-15 (26.7%) in the last four games

The Blueshirts' penalty kill is 33-38 (86.8%) in the last nine games

Power Play: The Rangers were 1-3 (5:39) on Thursday vs. Buffalo. New York ranks 13th in the NHL overall (8-39, 20.5%), and 24th at home (1-8, 12.5%). The Rangers are 2-2 (0:48) in five-on-three situations (last – 10/12 at STL), and 0-1 (0:30) when four-on-three (last – 10/12 at STL). Shorthanded goals allowed (2): 10/8 at SJS (Vlasic); 10/24 at PHI (Read).

Penalty Killing: The Blueshirts were 1-1 (2:00) on Thursday vs. Buffalo. New York ranks 11th in the NHL overall (38-46, 82.6%), and 13th at home (6-7, 85.7%). The Rangers are 2-2 (1:59) in three-on-five situations (last – 10/16 at WSH), and 1-1 (0:12) when three-on-four (last – 10/29 at NYI). Shorthanded goals for (1): 10/7 at LAK (McDonagh).

Four-on-Four: New York did not skate in a four-on-four situation on Thursday vs. Buffalo, and are now -1 in 14 four-on-four situations (23:20) this season. Four-on-four goals for (2): 10/16 at WSH (J. Moore); 10/26 at DET (Brassard). Four-on-four goals allowed (3): 10/3 at PHX (Vrbata); 10/7 at LAK (Muzzin); 10/12 at STL (Backes).

HOW SWEEP IT IS

The Rangers have swept the season series against the Hurricanes in each of the last two seasons, and enter the contest with an eight-game winning streak against Carolina. The Blueshirts have out-scored the Hurricanes, 31-16, during the streak, which began with a 4-3 shootout victory on Feb. 22, 2011 at Carolina. The Rangers have won four straight games against the Hurricanes at Madison Square Garden, tallying 13 goals while allowing five over the span. The Blueshirts also have a five-game winning streak at Carolina, and have won seven of their last eight meetings in Raleigh. Prior to 2011-12, the last time the Rangers swept the season series against the Hurricanes was during the 2002-03 season (4-0-0).

IT'S STAAL IN THE FAMILY

Rangers' defenseman Marc Staal has faced off against his brothers, Carolina forwards Eric and Jordan Staal, in a combined 44 career regular season contests. Below is a breakdown of the brothers' head-to-head matchups:

MILESTONE GAME

The Rangers' 2-0 win against the Sabres on Thursday at Madison Square Garden marked a milestone game for defensemen Dan Girardi and Marc Staal. Girardi was skating in his 500th career NHL contest, while Staal was making his 400th career appearance.

SHUTTING THE DOOR

Henrik Lundqvist posted his 47th career shutout with a 29-save performance in a 2-0 win against Buffalo on Thursday at Madison Square Garden. The shutout was his second in his last four appearances, and he is 2-2-0 with a 1.52 GAA and .938 Sv% over the span. Lundqvist is now two shutouts shy of Ed Giacomin's franchise record for most career regular season shutouts.

SHOOTING GALLERY

The Rangers posted a season-high, 46 shots on goal on Thursday against Buffalo, which marked the most by the team in a single game since Mar. 15, 2011 vs. NY Islanders (47 shots). The Blueshirts also registered 21 shots in the second period on Oct. 16 at Washington, their most in a single period since that same game against the Islanders during the 2010-11 season (21 shots in the first period).

MOVING ON UP

With the Rangers' 2-0 win on Thursday against Buffalo, Head Coach Alain Vigneault moved past Jacques Demers into 28th on the NHL's all-time head coaching points list, earning 950 points in 818 career games coached (427-295-35-61).

ROAD WARRIORS

The Rangers concluded their season-opening nine-game road trip with a 3-2 overtime win on Oct. 26 at Detroit. The trip established a franchise record for longest road trip to start the season, breaking the old record of seven games set in 2011-12. It also tied the franchise mark for longest road trip overall, established during the 1955-56 season. Including the preseason schedule, the Rangers were on the road for 28 of 39 days, visiting 14 cities and traveling 15,263 miles. The Blueshirts' home opener on Oct. 28 against Montreal was their latest home opener in a non-lockout shortened season since the 1947-48 season (Oct. 29).

FINISHING THE JOB

The Blueshirts have registered a point in 95 consecutive regular season games when leading after the second period, dating back to the 2009-10 season, posting a record of 89-0-6 over the span. The Rangers’ last regulation loss in a game when entering the third with the lead was Feb. 4, 2010 (6-5 loss vs. WSH). New York is 3-0-0 when leading after the second period this season.

COUNTDOWN TO 6K

The Rangers have played in 5,954 regular season games throughout the franchise's 88 seasons, just 46 games shy of 6,000 all-time. The Blueshirts are scheduled to play their 6,000th game all-time on February 6 against the Edmonton Oilers at Madison Square Garden.

THE KING'S REIGN:

Henrik Lundqvist is one of four active NHL goalies to reach the 20-win mark in eight consecutive seasons (Brodeur, 12; Luongo, 9; Vokoun, 9), and is the only goaltender with an active streak of eight straight 20-win seasons

Was a Vezina Trophy finalist last season, the fifth time in his eight-year career he has been voted a finalist for the award which he won in 2012

Finished last season tied for the league lead with 24 wins, becoming the first Rangers goaltender to lead the league in wins since Mike Richter in 1993-94 (42)

Passed Ed Giacomin as the franchise leader in career total shutouts (regular season + playoffs) with a 20-save shutout in last season's finale against New Jersey, the 51st total shutout of his career

The Blueshirts' netminder has captured Rangers’ MVP honors for a franchise record, seven consecutive years. His seven Rangers’ MVP awards are also a franchise record, passing Brian Leetch (six) for the most in franchise history.

MILESTONES IN SIGHT:

Marc Staal – 1 point from 100th NHL career

MILESTONES RECENTLY ACHIEVED:

Dan Girardi – 500th career NHL game (10/31 vs. BUF)

Marc Staal – 400th career NHL game (10/31 vs. BUF)

INJURIES:

Rick Nash (IR - 10/14; head injury - 10/8, out indefinitely) – 9

Ryan Callahan (IR - 10/21; broken thumb - 10/16, 3-4 weeks) – 6

Dominic Moore (strained oblique - 10/29, 7-10 days) – 1

Total Man-Games Lost: 30

RECENT TRANSACTIONS:

Oct. 29 – Assigned forward Jesper Fast to Hartford (AHL)

Oct. 27 – Assigned goaltender Jason Missiaen to Hartford (AHL)

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