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Rangers, Devils and Islanders Game Previews

by Photo of Gil Santos

All three local hockey teams hit the ice on the road.

Rangers, Devils and Islanders Game Previews

All three local teams are in action tonight. The New Jersey Devils and New York Rangers continue their push to the playoffs while the New York Islanders look to bounce back from heartbreaking overtime loss in Edmonton.

New York Rangers (33-26-4, 70 pts) at Carolina Hurricanes (27-26-9, 63 pts)

The Rangers are clinging onto the final playoff spot in the Metropolitan Division with just a point lead over the Columbus Blue Jackets. Martin St. Louis made his Ranger debut and was held off the scoresheet in their overtime loss to the Toronto Maple Leafs. The Blue Shirts go on the road to face the struggling Hurricanes, who have lost five of their last six games. They blew out Carolina in their first meeting back in November, 5-1. In addition, the Rangers are trying to break their three-game losing streak to stay ahead of the pack in the playoff race. Henrik Lundqvist will start in net against the Hurricanes' Anton Khudobin.

Who's Hot: Derek Stepan - Stepan hasn't put any pucks in net, but is making things happen with five assists in his last six games. In the last meeting against the Hurricanes, Stepan scored his second career hat trick and could be a factor in this one.

Who's Not: Henrik Lundqvist - Since his stellar Olympics for Sweden, Lundqvist has played very poorly. Lundqvist is 0-2-1 with a 4.36 goals allowed against and 86% save percentage since the Olympic break. 

New Jersey Devils (27-23-13, 67 pts) at Detroit Red Wings (28-21-13, 69 pts)

The Devils will be at Joe Louis Arena tonight to meet the Detroit Red Wings in the final game of a home at home. It is a pivotal game for the Devils considering they could tie the Red Wings in points for the wild card spot with a victory. In their last meeting, the two teams went back and forth in a thrilling game in New Jersey with the Devils coming out on top, 4-3, on the back of a late third period goal from Stephen Gionta. The Red Wings are coming off a tough overtime loss against the Colorado Avalanche last night, so they should be even more pumped up. The Devils must contain Johan Frazen, who scored in their last meeting and has been on absolute tear lately with seven points in his last four games. Cory Schneider is in goal for the Devils this time around.

Who's Hot: Adam Henrique - Henrique has been red hot since the Olympic break with five goals and seven points over four games. He also scored in their last contest against the Red Wings, so look for him to make an impact. 

Who's Not: Michael Ryder - The streaky Ryder is goalless in his 17 games and hasn't found the net since January against the Florida Panthers. 

New York Islanders (24-32-9, 57 pts) vs. Calgary Flames (24-31-7, 55 pts)

In the Islanders' second game of a Canada road trip, they take on a fellow bottom dweller, the Calgary Flames. The Islanders suffered a heartbreaking overtime loss to the Edmonton Oilers, where they blew a two goal lead last night. The Flames won their last game against the Ottawa Senators on Wednesday, 4-1. This is the Islanders' second meeting with the Flames in two months. In their first contest, the Islanders' comeback was thwarted by a late tie-breaking goal from David Jones. The Isles have yet to name their starter for tonight's game. 

Who's Hot: Anders Lee - The rookie has been impressive in his first stint with the big club. In five games, Lee already has four goals and five total points for the Isles. 

Who's NotFran Nielsen - Nielsen tallied a goal last night against Edmonton, but it was his first in eight games. Nielsen recently returned to lineup last weekend against the Florida Panthers, so perhaps he could start to heat up. 

Want great tickets but hate paying fees? Check CHARGED.fm to find tickets for less and NO FEES! 

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