The Rangers will face-off against the Washington Capitals tomorrow, Apr. 13, at Verizon Center (7:30 p.m.), in Game One of their Eastern Conference Quarterfinal match-up. On Saturday, the Blueshirts defeated the New Jersey Devils, 5-2, in their regular season finale. New York finished with an 11-4-1 mark in their final 16 contests. The Rangers enter tonight’s contest with a 197-212-8 record all-time in 417 playoff contests, including an 88-130-6 mark on the road. New York has posted a 41-46-5 record all-time in Game Ones of playoff series.
New York enters the 2011 Stanley Cup Playoffs having posted a record of 44-33-5 (93 pts) overall with a 24-16-1 mark on the road in the regular season. The Blueshirts are one of seven Eastern Conference teams to have registered at least five seasons of 40+ wins since 2005-06, and one of five Eastern Conference teams to advance to the playoffs in five of the six seasons (no team has advanced to the playoffs in all six seasons). Compared to last season, the Rangers registered six more wins and six more points (38-33-11, 87 points in 2009-10), having tallied 11 more goals (233 this season, 222 last season) while allowing 20 fewer goals against (198 this season, 218 last season). New York also posted a six-goal improvement while shorthanded compared to 2009-10 (11 this season, five last season). The Rangers’ 44 wins tied for sixth most in team history, and their 24 road wins tied the franchise record (1993-94).
RANGERS PRACTICE SCHEDULE:
Prior to tomorrow’s contest, the Blueshirts’ morning skate is scheduled for 11:30 a.m. at Verizon Center. Rangers Head Coach John Tortorella will be available to the media following the morning skate.
* Schedule and availability subject to change
* TV: MSG Plus
7:00 p.m. – Rangers Pre-Game Show with Al Trautwig
7:30 p.m. – Rangers at Capitals
Broadcasters: Sam Rosen (Play-By-Play), Joe Micheletti (Analyst), John Giannone (In-Game Reporter)
* Radio: 1050 ESPN Radio and www.newyorkrangers.com
7:00 p.m. – Rangers Pre-Game Show
7:30 p.m. – Rangers at Capitals
Broadcasters: Kenny Albert (Play-By-Play), Dave Maloney (Analyst)
ALL-TIME RANGERS PLAYOFF RECORDS:
* Overall: 197-212-8
* Home: 109-82-2
* Away: 88-130-6
* Goals for: 1,167
* Goals against: 1,200
ALL-TIME PLAYOFF RECORDS – RANGERS vs. CAPITALS:
The Rangers and Capitals are meeting in the playoffs for the sixth time overall and the second time in three years. Their last postseason encounter was an Eastern Conference Quarterfinal series in 2009, won by Washington 4-3. Overall, the Blueshirts have a 2-3 playoff series record vs. the Capitals, posting a 14-15 mark in 29 postseason contests.
RANGERS vs. CAPITALS:
* All-Time (Regular Season): 83-84-18-5 overall (46-37-9-2 at home; 37-47-9-3 on the road)
* 2010-11: The Rangers posted a 3-1-0 record vs. the Capitals, including a 2-0-0 mark at Verizon Center. New York out-scored Washington, 18-6, led by Brian Boyle’s seven points (three goals, four assists). The Rangers held the Capitals to one goal or less three times, including two shutouts by Henrik Lundqvist.
* Over the last two seasons, the Blueshirts have tallied 10 power play goals in 30 opportunities (33.3%) in their last eight games vs. Washington, including six goals in 17 power play attempts (35.3%) in four games in 2009-10.
* Henrik Lundqvist has posted a 3-4 record with a 3.00 goals against average and one shutout in seven career playoff contests vs. Washington
* Vinny Prospal leads the Rangers with six goals, eight assists and 14 points in 14 career playoff contests vs. Washington
* New York lists one former Capital on their roster: Steve Eminger (2002-03 – 2007-08)
* Washington lists two former Rangers on their roster: Mike Knuble (1998-99 – 1999-00); Tom Poti (2001-02 – 2005-06)
The Blueshirts posted a plus-13 rating on special teams (PPG+SHG minus PPGA+SHGA) this season, which tied for second in the league.
* Power Play: The Rangers tallied 14 goals in 72 attempts (19.4%) in their last 21 games. New York ranked 18th overall (49-290, 16.9%) and 21st on the road (21-139, 15.1%). The Rangers were 5-15 (12:41) in five-on-three situations (last – 4/3 at PHI), and 0-7 (8:42) when four-on-three (last – 4/3 at PHI). Shorthanded goals allowed (5): 11/20 at MIN (Cullen); 12/5 vs. OTT (Kelly); 1/2 at FLA (Weiss); 1/16 vs. PHI (Richards); 3/20 at PIT (Kunitz).
* Penalty Killing: The Blueshirts surrendered just two goals in 20 attempts (90.0%) on the penalty kill in the last 11 games. New York tied for ninth overall (215-257, 83.7%) and ranked sixth on the road (117-139, 84.2%). The Rangers were 7-10 (7:21) in three-on-five situations (last – 2/27 vs. TBL), and 4-6 (2:41) when three-on-four (last – 11/15 at PIT). Shorthanded goals for (11): 10/9 at BUF (Dubinsky); 11/5 at NJD (Dubinsky); 11/15 at PIT (Staal); 11/24 at TBL (Boyle); 11/26 at FLA (Prust); 12/5 vs. OTT (Prust); 12/12 vs. WSH (Staal); 12/16 vs. PHX (Prust); 1/7 at DAL (Fedotenko); 2/27 vs. TBL (Prust); 3/15 vs. NYI (Prust).
* Four-on-Four: New York was plus-three in 67, four-on-four situations (134:41), and even in one, three-on-three situation (2:00) this season (2/17 vs. LAK). Four-on-four goals for (7): 10/18 vs. COL (Frolov); 11/11 vs. BUF (Anisimov); 11/15 at PIT (Callahan); 12/12 vs. WSH (Callahan); 1/5 vs. CAR (Zuccarello); 3/4 at OTT (Stepan); 3/6 vs. PHI (Zuccarello). Four-on-four goals allowed (4): 10/15 vs. TOR (Kessel); 1/1 at TBL (Thompson); 3/15 vs. NYI (Moulson); 4/3 at PHI (Zherdev).
The Blueshirts are the only team in the NHL who were undefeated when leading after two periods this season, posting a record of 29-0-0 in those contests. The Rangers tied for third in the league with a plus-22 goal differential in the third period (85 goals for, 63 goals against). New York also tied for second in the NHL with eight wins and 20 points in games in which it trailed entering the final frame.
RAISING THEIR GAME:
The Rangers are undefeated in their last six games vs. the top four teams in the Eastern Conference standings, including a 6-0 win at Washington on Feb. 25. New York has out-scored their opponents, 27-7, in those contests, having tallied five or more goals in four of the six games while posting three shutouts.
Rangers Captain Chris Drury is tied for fourth in the NHL all-time with four playoff overtime goals, and ranks fourth among active NHL players and leads the team with 47 goals in 130 career postseason contests. Drury has participated in the playoffs eight times, having advanced to at least the Conference Finals in five of those eight seasons.
THE PUCK STOPS HERE:
Henrik Lundqvist was named the NHL’s Third Star of the Week for the period ending Mar. 27 after posting a 2-0-1 record, 0.32 GAA, .987 Sv% and two shutouts in three games. On Mar. 26, Lundqvist stopped 26 shots in a 1-0 victory at Boston to establish a new career-high with his league leading, 11th shutout of the season, while appearing in his 400th career game. His 11 shutouts are tied for second in team history for most shutouts in a season, and are the most by a Ranger since John Ross Roach posted 13 shutouts in 1928-29. He is now one of two active goaltenders with at least two seasons of 10+ shutouts (M. Brodeur – 4). Lundqvist also posted his 30th win of the season on Mar. 18 vs. Montreal to extend his NHL record by recording 30 or more wins in six consecutive seasons to begin his career, and extend his franchise record by posting his sixth straight 30-win season. Lundqvist established a new career-high by appearing in his 22nd consecutive contest (dating back to Feb. 11) on Mar. 31 at Long Island. Lundqvist has appeared in 26 straight games entering tonight’s contest.
TURNING LEMONS INTO LEMONADE:
The Rangers tied for fourth in the league with 11 shorthanded goals this season, the most for New York since they notched 11 in 2006-07 and tied for 12th most in franchise history. Brandon Prust led the team and tied for second and third in the league, respectively, with a career-high, seven shorthanded points and five shorthanded goals. His five shorthanded goals are the most by a Ranger since Theo Fleury tallied seven shorthanded goals in 2000-01. Brian Boyle led the Rangers and tied for second in the NHL with a career-best, three shorthanded assists.
AMONG THE LEAGUE LEADERS:
The Rangers completed the regular season leading the league in hits (2,333), ranked fourth in blocked shots (1,301), tied for first in shutouts (11), second in number of players with at least one GWG (19), third in shootout wins (nine), fourth in road wins (24), fifth in goals against (198), and fifth with a plus-35 goal differential.
New York won its 40th game of the season with a 1-0 victory vs. Florida on Mar. 22. It is the fifth time in the last six years the Rangers posted 40 or more wins in a season, marking only the second time in franchise history the team accomplished the feat (1968-69 – 1973-74). The Blueshirts are one of five Eastern Conference teams to have registered at least five seasons of 40+ wins since 2005-06 (Montreal, New Jersey, Philadelphia, and Pittsburgh).
* Derek Boogaard (shoulder, 12/9) – 52
* Alex Frolov (knee, 1/8) – 39
* Martin Biron (collarbone, 2/28) – 18
* Ryan Callahan (ankle, 4/4) – 2
Total Man-Games Lost (Regular Season): 327
* Apr. 8 – Recalled forward Mats Zuccarello from Connecticut (AHL)