New York Rangers vs Sharks matchup: Look to avoid troubled waters

rangers sharks
Dec 3, 2021; New York, New York, USA; New York Rangers goaltender Igor Shesterkin (31) makes a save on San Jose Sharks right wing Kevin Labanc (62) during the second period at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Danny Wild-USA TODAY Sports

The New York Rangers will face the San Jose Sharks for the second time this season. As the team awaits reinforcements off the COVID list, rookie Braden Schneider may be making his debut. Igor Shesterkin has been cleared.

Here’s the game day preview by the numbers.

NYR: 23-10-4 (50 POINTS)
SJS: 20-16-1 (41 POINTS)

THURSDAY, JANUARY 13, 2022 – 10:30 PM ET, SAP CENTER
TV: MSG
RADIO: ESPN 98.7 FM

Rangers last game: 3-1 loss to Los Angeles Kings

New York Rangers vs San Jose Sharks

All-Time: 30-10-3-1 (15-5-1-0 at home; 15-5-2-1 on the road)

The Blueshirts are on a six game winning streak against the Sharks going back to 2018. They are 8-2-1 in their last eleven games against them.

Shark Hunters:

Artemi Panarin – 12 GP, 6G-8A=14 PTS – Panarin has seven points (3G-4A) in his last four games against the Sharks and is a cumulative plus-6 in those four games. On December 12, 2019, Panarin recorded a hat trick against the Sharks in San Jose. Panarin has a point in seven of his 12 career games against the Sharks.

Chris Kreider – 13 GP, 4G-6A=10 PTS – Kreider has a point in three of his last five games (2G-3A) against the Sharks and a multi-point game in two of his last four games (2G-2A). Kreider has a multi-point game in four of 13 matchups with San Jose.

Mika Zibanejad – 14 GP, 6G-4A=10 PTS – Zibanejad has points in four-straight games (3G-2A) and goals (3) in two of his last three games against the Sharks.

Per New York Rangers Game Notes

artemi panarin
Jan 22, 2021; Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, USA; New York Rangers defenseman Adam Fox (23) celebrates his goal with New York Rangers left wing Artemi Panarin (10) and left wing Chris Kreider (20) against the Pittsburgh Penguins during the second period at the PPG Paints Arena. Pittsburgh won 4-3 in a shoot-out. Mandatory Credit: Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

Rangers key numbers

Point Distribution: The Blueshirts are one of three teams (Colorado Avalanche, Tampa Bay Lightning) in the NHL to have 4 players with at least 30 points (Panarin 36, Fox 36, Zibanejad 33, Kreider 32).

Road Warriors: This will be the Rangers 23rd road game of the season, which is the most in the NHL. After this trip, 26 of the final 43 games will be at MSG.

Strong in the dots: Rangers have been over 50% on draws in three of their last five contests.

Key Rangers:

Artemi Panarin’s 36 points is tied for 10th in NHL scoring.

Adam Fox’s 36 points is ranks third in scoring among defensemen.

Chris Kreider’s 12 PPG ranks 2nd in the NHL, his 21 goals ranks 5th.

Mika Zibanejad has 8 goals in his last nine games, tied for second most in the NHL since December 15.

NYR v SJS
NYR v SJS (matchup stats)

Rangers Milestones within reach

Chris Kreider 2 goals from 200 in his career. 1 point from passing Bard Park for 19th in all-time team scoring, and 2 PPG from tying Mark Messier for 8th all-time in team history (72).

Mika Zibanejad is 1 overtime goal away from tying Cecil Dillon, Butch Keeling and Brian Leetch (7 each) for the most overtime goals by a player in Rangers history. 1 SHG to tie for top 10 in shorthanded goals. 1 goal from 150 as a Ranger.

Ryan Reaves is 1 goal away from 50 in his career.

Kaapo Kakko is 3 games shy of 150 in his career.

Rangers Special Teams

  • NYR PP is running at 22.94% (9th)
  • NYR PK is working at 85.19% (4th)

*Some Stats and Info courtesy New York Rangers

Three Keys for victory

  • Start strong, stay strong
  • Sharks have won three in a row but against lesser opponents (DET, PHI, BUF)
  • Panarin needs to get going – hopefully he shook off the rust

NHL Rumors

Chychrun a perfect fit for Rangers, and do the Oilers have a deal in place for Kane? Read it here.