July 29, 2020

Rangers will look to pick up physical intensity in tonight’s game against the Islanders

Kreider buries one past Varlamov (Getty Images)

One exhibition game to go before each team in the qualifying round will be playing for survival. One game, that’s it.

Every NHL team that begins play this weekend has one contest to prepare. Head coaches may be using this game to finalize a decision or two on the roster, but for David Quinn and the Rangers, it will be about contact.

Steve Valiquette on Rangers vs Islanders

Yesterday, I spoke with MSG Analyst, Steve Valiquette by phone to discuss tonight’s game and the playoffs. “That’s the hardest thing to do to start a season is getting puck out of your own zone when a defenseman is bearing down on you,” Valiquette said. “Getting banged around and taking the body is what you don’t get in the blue and white scrimmage.”

He and I both agreed that for David Quinn, he will be looking for his team to make hits and take them. Tonight’s contest is al about making good decisions with the puck when under pressure. These are all things that are harder to simulate in practice.

Rangers versus Islanders Pre-Game Notes:

Lindgren crushes Eberle (USA Today)
  • The Rangers play an exhibition game tonight, against the New York Islanders at Scotiabank Arena in Toronto, Ontario (8:00 p.m. ET – TV: MSG Network).
  • At various times in franchise history, the Rangers have spent extended periods of time in the city of Toronto and/or the province of Ontario. In addition to playing their “home games” during the 1950 Stanley Cup Final at Maple Leaf Gardens, the Blueshirts held their inaugural Training Camp in Toronto prior to the start of the 1926-27 season.
  • The Blueshirts were the only NHL team that had eight players 21 years old or younger play at least one game this season. In addition, the Rangers were one of three NHL teams that had two goaltenders 24 years old or younger appear in at least one game this season (along with New Jersey and Vancouver). Entering the 2020 Stanley Cup Qualifiers, the Rangers have the second-youngest roster among the 24 teams returning to play (average age is 25.7 years old).

Notes Courtesy of the NYR PR Dept.

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