Rangers take on fading Flyers with chance to clinch playoff berth

NHL: Philadelphia Flyers at New York Rangers
Wendell Cruz-USA TODAY SportsCredit: Wendell Cruz-USA TODAY Sports

The New York Rangers play host to a struggling Philadelphia Flyers squad at Madison Square Garden on Tuesday night with a chance to clinch a berth in the Stanley Cup Playoffs. Coach Peter Laviolette’s charges need a single point (and some help), or a win which will give them 100 points for the 13th time in franchise history to seal the deal.

In the Rangers last game, they rallied back from a two-goal hole to defeat the Florida Panthers 4-3 in a shootout. It marked the first time at home this season when they were able to win a game at the Garden down by two or more (1-9-0).

Artemi Panarin scored twice, and now sits at 99 points (43 goals, 56 assists). If he can pick up a point against the Flyers, he’ll be the first Rangers’ player to hit the century mark since Jaromir Jagr (123 points) did it in the 2005-06 season.

“When you get to work with him on a daily basis, you really get to see the compete inside of him,” Laviolette praised Panarin. “It was on full display the last game.”

New York won’t have it easy, despite Philly’s recent struggles (7-8-3 since Feb. 15). On Saturday, another Rangers defenseman went down with injury. Erik Gustafsson is currently day to day after taking an errant Panthers’ elbow to the head. Recent call up Brandon Scanlin could make his NHL debut. Ryan Lindgren was back at practice Monday wearing a no-contact jersey after a lower-body injury took him out of the lineup in a win against the New York Islanders on Mar. 17. He’s expected to miss his fourth straight game.

“He looks really strong,” Laviolette said. “[Lindgren] practiced hard and it was great to have him out there.”

Here’s today’s game and broadcast info:

New York Rangers (47-20-4) vs Philadelphia Flyers (36-27-9)
Date/Time: March 26, 2024 @ 7:00 PM ET
Arena: Madison Square Garden
Radio: ESPN 98.7 FM

Note: Subject to change, updated for each game

Related: Zac Jones stepping up for Rangers

New York Rangers projected lineup

chris kreider rangers
Wendell Cruz-USA TODAY Sports

Here’s the expected lineup:

Kreider – Zibanejad – Roslovic
Panarin – Trocheck – Lafreniere
Cuylle – Wennberg – Kakko
Vesey – Goodrow – Rempe

Jones – Fox
Miller – Schneider
Scanlin – Ruhwedel


Update: After the morning skate, Laviolette confirmed Cuylle’s return to the lineup but said other decisions still needed to be made.

New York Rangers vs Philadelphia Flyers

The Rangers (98 points) lead the Metropolitan Division by one point over the second-place Carolina Hurricanes (97 points), who play the Penguins in Pittsburgh on Tuesday.

Other key games to watch in the Presidents’ Trophy race include the Boston Bruins at Florida Panthers, with both teams at 97 points. In the West, the Dallas Stars (97 points) are in San Jose to take on the bottom-feeding Sharks.

While the Flyers (81 points) will be desperately looking for a victory, as the Washington Capitals (79 points) are now just two points behind them for third place in the Metro, the Blueshirts obviously have a lot at stake themselves.

This season, the Rangers have a stellar record at home (25-9-0) and have won 10 of their past 12 at the Garden. Since Jan. 27, New York is a remarkable 18-4-1 which has put them at the top of the NHL standings by the tie-breaker if points percentage over the Vancouver Canucks (.690 to .681).

New York has taken the first two games of the regular season-series (2-0-0) against the Flyers, both in Philadelphia. After tonight, there will be one more contest set for Apr. 11 at home.

Upcoming Rangers Milestones

  • Chris Kreider is 2 goals away from 300 in his career
  • Artemi Panarin is 1 point away from 100 for the first time in his career
  • Vincent Trocheck is 4 goals away from 200 in his career
  • Adam Fox is 4 points away from 300 in his career
  • Peter Laviolette is 1 win away from 800 in his career
  • Jonathan Quick is 1 win away from passing Ryan Miller (391) for most wins by an American-born goalie and sole possession of 15th all-time

Anthony Scultore is the founder of Forever Blueshirts and has been covering the New York Rangers and the NHL... More about Anthony Scultore

Mentioned in this article:

More About: