UNIONDALE NY - DECEMBER 02: The New York Rangers celebrate a power play goal by Marian Gaborik at 16:24 of the second period against the New York Islanders at the Nassau Coliseum on December 2 2010 in Uniondale New York. The Rangers defeated the Islanders 6-5. (Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)

Rangers Sweep Home And Home Against Islanders

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Rangers 2, Islanders 0

New York, NY (Sports Network) – Henrik Lundqvist stopped 17 shots as the New York Rangers downed the New York Islanders, 2-0, at Madison Square Garden.

Marc Staal and Brian Boyle scored for the Rangers, who swept the home-and-home set and have claimed six of their last eight games.

“It was totally different than last night’s game,” Rangers’ head coach John Tortorella said of the low-scoring contest in comparison to Thursdays’ 6-5 victory. “I thought as the game went on, especially in the second period, we started taking control of it. We didn’t develop a lot of offense but I thought we took control.”

Lundqvist recorded his fourth shutout of the season and 28th of his career.

Dwayne Roloson was the hard-luck loser after turning away 19-of-20 shots for the Islanders, who have lost their last 10 road games.

After a scoreless first period in which the teams combined for only nine shots, the Rangers struck on the power play early in the second.

Staal took a return pass from Brandon Dubinsky and blistered a rising slap shot from the right point past Roloson 4 1/2 minutes into the middle session.

The visitors pulled Roloson in the final minute but could not generate any sort of sustained attack before Boyle scored into an empty net with 2.6 ticks remaining.

“We played a smart road game, we did a lot of good things,” Islanders’ head coach Jack Capuano said. “We moved the puck and we kept a good team to a limited amount of chances. We had opportunities on some rushes and we tried the extra move or extra pass but didn’t get enough pucks to the net.”

Lundqvist blanked the Isles for the third time in his career…He is 19-9-5 against them in 34 games…The Rangers have scored first in 19 of their 28 games and are 14-4-1 when doing so…New York has notched a power-play tally in six of its last eight games…The Islanders last win away from home came October 21 at Tampa Bay…Roloson is 4-7-2 in 13 career meetings against the Rangers…The Islanders are 0-12-2 when their opponent scores first…The last time either team swept the other in a back-to-back set was October 19-20, 2005 when the Isles won both contests…The last time the Rangers swept a back-to- back set was March 28-29, 2001.


New York Islanders At New York Rangers: Rivalry Part Two

In what was probably the craziest hockey game I have ever witnessed, the New York Rangers beat the New York Islanders, 6-5, on Long Island Thursday night.

The Rangers were fueled by a Marian Gaborik hat trick, his second of the year, and a mid-game goaltending switch to remove Martin Biron and insert Henrik Lundqvist. The move worked, although Biron really wasn't on his game anyway, and Lundqvist helped pull through with the win. 

Tonight you can expect much of the same, except that the game will be on a bigger stage in Madison Square Garden. 

John Tortorella will probably work with his team on trying to keep calm with a lead. The Rangers have been good with that all year, but for whatever reason they seem to play their worst when facing their arch-rivals in the Islanders. Both starting goaltenders had bad games, and in the Rangers case, expect to see Lundqvist in the net. 

There is not word yet on which goaltender the Islanders will start. 

The Rangers, who are fighting for some better positioning in the Atlantic, need the two points to help their cause. And honestly, with the way the two teams are playing right now, there's no excuse not to beat the Islanders on home soil tonight. 

As for the Islanders? They want to go in and take it to their rivals and walk out of the arena with 18,000 disappointed fans.

We'll see who prevails tonight. 

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