Road Warrior Rangers In Philly For Pivotal Game Three

The Rangers will look to solve Ray Emery (?!?!?) in Philadelphia (Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)

The Rangers will look to solve Ray Emery (?!?!?) in Philadelphia (Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)

In the shadow of a frustrating Game Two loss at Madison Square Garden, the New York Rangers head to Philadelphia tonight for a crucial Game Three matchup with the Flyers.

Ray Emery will make his third consecutive start for Philadelphia in place of starter Steve Mason.  Emery was fantastic in Game Two, allowing just two goals on 31 shots in the victory.  He’ll look to continue that success on home ice tonight.

The Rangers know they’ll need to stick to their game to be successful in the series.  Much like the Detroit Red Wings, they cannot get caught up in a game of physical scrums and foolish penalties.  They’ll need to continue putting pucks on net and getting traffic in front of Emery, who had hip surgery in 2010 and has had difficulty moving from side to side while in goal.

The power play will need to be a factor for the Rangers to have any amount of success.  They’ll look to improve after Game Two saw them with the man advantage six times, but yielded only one goal.

Ranger Positives?

The Tampa Connection of Brad Richards and Martin St.Louis have combined for six points in the first pair of games.  Their three points a piece lead the Rangers as a team, they’ll need to continue their rediscovered success in Philadelphia.  And for all the criticism he receives, some warranted, some completely unfounded, Rick Nash leads the Rangers with 13 shots on goal.  You’ve got to assume that, eventually, Big Sexy will find the back of the net.  The Rangers 25 regular season wins on the road are the best in the Eastern Conference, but they’re 0-2 this season at the Wells Fargo Center.

For more on Rick Nash read: Rick Nash On The Verge Of An Explosion

Player To Watch 

Henrik Lundqvist.  We’ve said time and again that this Ranger team will only go as far as their goaltender takes them.  It’s time for The King to answer the bell and take control of this series.  After giving up three goals on 24 shots in Game Two (including one to Luke Schenn) Lundqvist must come out better in Game Three.  And after signing a multi-year, multi-million dollar extension earlier in the year, it’s time for some accountability from the NYR net minder.

Practice Buzz

Yesterday, Alain Vigneualt hinted to lineup changes and Jesper Fast was barely used in game two. In comes Dan Carcillo, so the Rangers will be ready for the rough stuff.

Full Tilt Forecast:  This will be a difficult task for the Rangers, in a very hostile environment that they’ve yet to win in this year.  Nonetheless, I think Rick Nash comes up with a huge game, getting the playoff monkey off his back in process.

Final Score: Rangers 2 Flyers 1

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