BY: DAVID KOLB | @DAVIDKOLBMSG
NEW YORK RANGERS (5-2-0) @ CAROLINA HURRICANES (1-3-2)
“THE KING” BACK ON HIS THRONE
Henrik Lundqvist will be between the pipes tonight, looking to record his fourth win in-a-row. Lundqvist has started six of the Rangers’ seven games this season and is currently 4-2-0 with a 2.35 goals against average with a .907 save percentage.
The Rangers are tied with the Edmonton Oilers for first overall in the NHL, scoring 3.9 goals a game, and will be best served tonight if they could make an early push to get the first goal to quiet the Carolina home-opener crowd. The ‘Canes unbelievably have started the season with seven games on the road and are looking forward to some home cooking tonight.
INS & OUTS
Rookie, Pavel Buchnevich (back) will return to the lineup tonight after missing five games. Buchnevich tallied an assist in his first NHL game and enters tonight’s tilt looking for his first career goal. Josh Jooris, who scored one goal in five games, will be out of the lineup, possibly for a month with a shoulder injury.
The Rangers’ solid start to the season can be attributed to the infusion of gifted forwards that GM Scott Gorton brought to Broadway over the summer. Through the first seven games, Mika Zibanejad shares the team lead in points with seven, Brandon Pirri has six, while rookie Jimmy Vesey has lit the lamp four times and has registered five points.
23 year-old, first line center, Victor Rask has moved into former Hurricane, Eric Staal’s role and has impressed through his first six games of the season. Rask has four goals and three assists for seven points (all on the road) and has at least a point in each game this season. The Blueshirts key to success tonight is to hone in on the Rask-Lee Stempniak duo, which already has 13 points collectively.