Rangers vs. Lightnings – 7:30 PM MSG
So I’ve got some leads on the poll and it will probably be in place for the next game but not tonight. This is clearly a half-assed venture. Feel free to list your three stars in the comments and I’ll do my best to aggregate them into a list.
Tonight’s probable lineup for the Rangers (5-3), via Steve Zipay (@stevezipay)
Jimmy Vesey-Derek Stepan-Rick Nash
Pavel Buchnevich-Mika Zibanejad-Mats Zuccarello
Michael Grabner-Kevin Hayes-J.T. Miller
Brandon Pirri-Oscar Lindberg- Jesper Fast
Ryan McDonagh-Dan Girardi
Marc Staal-Nick Holden
Brady Skjei-Kevin Klein
Antti Raanta gets his second start of the season. His prior start was a 7-4 win against the Sharks. It is Raanta’s first career appearance against the Lightnings.
Kreider will miss his fourth straight game, but barring a setback, will play on Tuesday against St. Louis. When he returns, that’s when things will get interesting for the forwards.
Clendening remains Prucha’d, also for a fourth straight game. Given the PP’s efficacy without him in the lineup, it is hard to come up with a compelling reason for him to be in.
Even so, the defensive pairings have been shuffled, with the Staal/Klein pairing being split so that Staal is with Holden and Klein is with Skjei. I thought Klein struggled against Carolina while Skjei had one of his better games of the season.
The only change among the forwards from Friday in Raleigh is a swap of Grabner and Fast on the third and fourth lines.
For the Lightning (5-3), both Nikita Kucherov and Ryan Callahan are injured, but one of them will play tonight, unless the Lightnings carry seven defensemen instead. Obviously, Kucherov is the far more dangerous player. Ben Bishop will start in goal. Historically, the Rangers have struggled against Bishop, who is 9-1 in 10 career regular season games played against the Rangers, with a .940 sv % and 1.60 GAA, including 2 shutouts. However, Bishop has struggled early this season.
Once again, a personal note, thank you so much for joining me here. If I can make this blog even half as good as Carp’s, I’ll be pretty damn proud.
I will not be able to watch this game live, so we will have our first guest review. I will, however, be including a short statement regarding recent occurrences with the blog.
Don’t forget to tell everyone you know and to follow me on Twitter @rangersreport2