NEW YORK RANGERS (13-4-0) @ COLUMBUS BLUE JACKETS (8-4-2)
TOUGH SCHED-ING AHEAD
The Rangers enter tonight’s game with a three-game winning streak, however, the schedule now gets tougher and the games will be more important, as the next 10 contests are against Eastern Conference opponents, while seven of those ten are against Metropolitan Division clubs.
HANK IS IN
The Rangers posted a 4-0-0 record (2-0-0 at home; 2-0-0 on the road) last season against the Jackets, outscoring Columbus, 15-7. Mats Zuccarello led all skaters with four goals, while tonight’s starter, Henrik Lundqvist, recorded a 3-0-0 record, with a 2.00 goals against average and a .941 save percentage.
19-year-old rookie defenseman, Zach Werenski, has been sensational for the Jackets this season, as he begins play tonight with five goals and eight assists for 13 points. The Rangers must keep an eye on Werenski at the point, as he already has six points on the power play. The young, talented blue-liner also has goals in three of his past four games, while tallying seven points in seven games in November.
STEPPING ON COLUMBUS
Watch Derek Stepan tonight, as he has always had success against the Blue Jackets. In 13 games, Stepan has seven goals and eight assists for 15 points, and currently owns an eight-game point streak against Columbus (six goals, seven assists), which includes a three-game goal streak.
After a dip in production last season, Nick Foligno leads all Blue Jackets with 16 points (six goals, ten assists) in 14 games, and owns a plus-five rating. He’s already matched his 2015-16 total with five multi-point games, and he’s notched seven points when the Blue Jackets own the man-advantage this season.