The Rangers are in St. Louis trying to avoid getting embarrassed for a third straight game after losing the last two by a combined score of 15-2 in San Jose and Anaheim. That 15-2 shellacking includes a four period run where the Rangers were outscored 13-1. Suffice it to say, I think we would be ok with New York not looking like a pee-wee team tonight. That will be tough, as Ken Hitchcock’s Blues are a formidable opponent.
In Ken Hitchcock’s previous runs, he was a very passive coach that ran a trapping system. In St. Louis, they are a little bit of a hybrid. They run an aggressive 2-1-2 forecheck, but tend to switch to a passive 1-2-2 with a late lead, though the way the Rangers are playing there’s probably no point on sitting back. They are fairly aggressive when it comes to defensive zone schemes, playing an overload style and collapsing down when the puck is down low. Their powerplay strategy is a 1-3-1, and their penalty kill formation is a diamond force.
Rangers lineup (probable):
Martin Biron gets the start.
PP2: Del Zotto-Girardi-Pouliot-Brassard-Zuccarello
Scratches: Carl Hagelin (shoulder), Arron Asham (healthy)
Game time is 8pm tonight. Don’t forget to check out New York Rangers Tickets link for deals to attend games.