December is a big month for the Rangers. After losing a sloppy game at home against the Jets, the Rangers played better in their win in Buffalo. Now the Devils are in town to kick off nine straight home games for the Blueshirts. Beating Jersey is very important, as the Rangers are two points up on the Devils with a game in hand, but taking hold of this nine game home stretch and rattling off six or seven wins is more important. This is a team that is 5-6 at home, and that cannot continue. They need wins, and this is the best stretch for them to collect them.
The Devils use two separate forechecking systems. In the early going the Devils play a 2-1-2 forecheck, but once the Devils get a lead, they switch forechecking strategies to a 1-2-2 hybrid trap. In the defensive zone, the Devils play an overload/low zone collapse style similar to what the Rangers want to execute. On special teams, the Devils play your standard umbrella powerplay. On the penalty kill, the Devs play a rotation between a box and a diamond, depending on puck location and the setup of the opposition.
Henrik Lundqvist gets the start.
Game time is 7pm today. Don’t forget to check out our Rangers Tickets link for deals to attend games.