Standings: Bruins (46-28-4), Rangers (50-21-7)
NYR Leading Scorer: Marian Gaborik (39-34-73)
BOS Leading Scorer: Tyler Seguin (27-37-64)
NYR Goaltender: Henrik Lundqvist (59 GS, 1.91 GAA, .930 SV%)
BOS Goaltender: Tim Thomas (53 GS, 2.38 GAA, .920 SV%)
Rangers Lines (probable):
Carl Hagelin-Brad Richards-Marian Gaborik
Brandon Dubinsky-Brian Boyle-Ryan Callahan
Artem Anisimov-Derek Stepan-Ruslan Fedotenko
Mike Rupp-John Mitchell-Brandon Prust
Ryan McDonagh-Dan Girardi
Michael Del Zotto-Anton Stralman
Marc Staal-Stu Bickel
Probable Scratches/Injuries: Mike Sauer (concussion), Mats Zuccarello (wrist), Steve Eminger (ankle), Jeff Woywitka (healthy), John Scott (healthy)
Preview: The magic number is now at three. At the time this post was written, the Flyers were tied with the Penguins at two. If Pittsburgh comes out of this game with just one point, then the Rangers can clinch home ice advantage through the Eastern Conference Finals with a victory –regulation, overtime, or shootout– today.
But, that’s going to be tough. The Rangers may have won the previous three matchups against the Bruins, but this is a B’s team that won’t want to be swept by a potential playoff opponent.
The masters of the 1-2-2 hybrid trap, the Bruins are a bit shorthanded, as Tuuka Rask is still out with his injury. That means Tim “I can’t see in these lights” Thomas will be playing tonight, with Marty “Where’s my cane?” Turco serving as the backup.
There are a lot of Bruins fans traveling for this game (they were all at the Nassau Coliseum yesterday), so the crowd might be a little bit more pro-Bruins than we might like. But hey, that happens in Boston/NYR games.
The Rangers are getting hot at the right time. It would be nice to see the Atlantic Division wrapped up tonight though.
Crazy Thought: I want a shutout.