The Rangers are back in action tonight in Minnesota, facing the Wild. The good news is that they don't have Marian Gaborik on their side. The bad news is that neither will we. Andrew Gross said Gabby was doubtful yesterday so I can't imagine much would change to get him to play against a struggling western team but who knows with our genius head coach.
Where We Are: Attempting to pick ourselves up out of the sewage of Long Island and clean ourselves off. With just one win in the last five games, things have got to turn for the better soon ... right?!?!?
Where They Are: Hoping things turn for the better as well. A new GM, a new coach and a new superstar hasn't been the recipe for success as of yet. Minnesota is 3-9-0 and coming off of two loses, the most recent being a 4-3 loss to Nashville on a third period shorthanded goal against. Eesh. At least they have those sexy new jerseys ...
Who To Watch For: The Wild brought in Martin Havlat to replace Gabby and it hasn't worked so far. Havlat is -10 in 10 games with just one goal. He is too good of a player to be this bad so the Rangers will have to keep close tabs on him. Brent Burns is slowly turning his bad start around and new captain Mikko Koivu is more than capable of racking up points. Personally, I also love watching Nick Schultz, one of the best shut-down defensive defensemen in the NHL.
What To Watch For: Cal Clutterbuck to go hit for hit with Ryan Callahan. Nicklas Backstrom to go save for save with Henrik. The Rangers to have to work harder to get shots through shot-blocking genius Greg Zanon and on net. See if the Blueshirts can actually win some faceoffs.
What We'll (Hopefully) See: The Boogeyman vs. Brashear, if Brash's "soreness" goes away in time. If not, Aaron Voros to step up and do something against his old team. Chris Higgins to score - I am going to keep hoping for that one, it may be a fool's errand but perhaps not - he does have the skill. PA Paranteau to go two-for-two. Redden and Rozy to grow a pair and play the body.
Also Check Out: I'll be honest, I haven't had a chance to check these since last season but they rocked then so why not now? View from Section 216, Hitting The Post, 18,568 Reasons Why and SBN's Hockey Wilderness.