New York Rangers take on struggling Blue Jackets; look to extend points streak to 10
Sunday night’s clash at Madison Square Garden sets the stage for an intriguing rematch as the high-flying New York Rangers take on the struggling Columbus Blue Jackets. It’s the second meeting of the season between these two teams, with Columbus having secured a 5-3 victory in their first encounter.
Since that early season upset, the Rangers have been on a tear, boasting an impressive 10-2-1 record. They sit comfortably atop the Metropolitan Division, having won 8 of their last 9 games. Their recent 4-1 win over Minnesota highlighted their resilience and depth, with Louis Domingue securing his first NHL win since January 2022.
Here’s tonight’s game and broadcast info:
New York Rangers (10-2-1) vs Columbus Blue Jackets (4-7-3)
Date/Time: November 12, 2023 @ 7:00 PM ET
Arena: Madison Square Garden
Radio: ESPN 1050 AM
Note: Subject to change, updated for each game
New York Rangers Projected Lineup
UPDATE: Jonathan Quick to start
No changes are expected in the Rangers lineup from Thursday night’s win. Louis Domingue should get the nod in goal even though Jonathan Quick returned to practice on Saturday.
Kreider – Zibanejad – Wheeler
Panarin – Trocheck– Lafreniere
Cuylle – Bonino – Kakko
Vesey – Goodrow – Pitlick
Miller – Trouba
Lindgren – Gustafsson
Jones – Schneider
“[Quick] looks good to me,” Peter Laviolette updated. “We’ll make decisions as we move forward with everyone’s best interest in mind… [Domingue] played a heck of game so if we have to go with him [against Columbus] we would be confident.”
Note: The Rangers will have a pre-game skate scheduled for 10:30 a.m. ET at the MSG Training Center. Check back for updates.
New York Rangers vs Columbus Blue Jackets
The Rangers’ offensive prowess has been a key factor in their success. Notably, newcomer Blake Wheeler scored his first goal as a Ranger in their latest victory on Thursday night. The team’s special teams have been particularly lethal. With a 35.7% success rate on the power play, they rank 2nd in the NHL, complemented by a sturdy 86.4% efficiency on the penalty kill. Their discipline and execution have seen them score power play goals in 11 of their first 13 games, and they’ve maintained a perfect penalty kill in three of their last five games.
In stark contrast, the Blue Jackets have been languishing at the bottom of the Metro standings with a 4-7-3 record, losing 8 of their last 9 contests. Their most recent defeat came at the hands of the Detroit Red Wings. Despite their struggles, captain Boone Jenner remains a beacon of hope, having notched a hat trick in their previous game against the Rangers and leading the team with 7 goals and 9 points.
Columbus’s special teams paint a mixed picture. While their power play has struggled at a 13.3% success rate, their penalty kill has been a bright spot, ranking 3rd in the NHL with an 88.4% efficiency. This could pose a challenge to the Rangers’ potent power play unit.
While head coach Peter Laviolette has not named a starting goaltender yet, Jonathan Quick (3-0-1, 1.77 GAA, .935 SV %) has returned for the Rangers after missing their last game with an upper body injury. Meanwhile, Elvis Merzlikins (3-3-2, 3.20 GAA, .897 SV %) is slated to start for Columbus, adding another layer of intrigue to the contest.
The Rangers have historically had the upper hand against Columbus, winning six of their last nine matchups. Adding to the night’s milestones, Mika Zibanejad is set to play his 500th game with the Rangers, a testament to his longevity and impact on the team.