This season, the Hudson River Rivalry has taken on more importance than in year's past.
Entering tonight's game, the New York Rangers and New Jersey Devils are both fighting for better playoff positions. The Rangers want to solidify their number one spot in the Eastern Conference, where they lead the Boston Bruins by just three points.
After missing the playoffs last season, the Devils are back in the playoff mix. They enter tonight's game sixth in the conference, just one point behind the Pittsburgh Penguins for the fourth seed.
The two teams will battle for a crucial two points in the standings tonight at Madison Square Garden. Gametime is 7 p.m. and can be seen on either MSG or MSG Plus 2.
New Jersey enters tonight's game riding a four game win streak that started with a 4-3 shootout win over the Rangers one week ago. New York jumped out to an early lead, with Anton Stralman giving the Rangers a 1-0 lead at 19:27 of the first period. Zach Parise responded in the second period, tying the game at one heading into the third period. The two teams traded goals in the final frame, with the Rangers holding a one-goal lead late in the game. David Clarkson tied the game with just 48 seconds left, tipping a loose puck past Martin Biron for the game-tying score.
Ilya Kovalchuk played hero for the Devils, beating Biron in the first round of the shootout for the game-winning goal.
New York has built a winning streak of it's own, entering tonight's game with two straight victories. They defeated the Flyers, 5-2, Sunday for their sixth straight win over the Flyers. Artem Anisimov had three points, and four other Rangers scored in the win. Henrik Lundqvist stopped 21 shots for his 24th win of the season.
This is the third of six meetings between the two teams this season. They've split two games at the Prudential Center.