The Rangers seek their fourth straight win when they play Carolina on Thursday
The New York Rangers (13-5-3) are one of the hottest teams in the NHL right now. The Blueshirts have won three games in a row and 10 of their last 12. The Rangers are just three points behind the Pittsburgh Penguins in the Atlantic Division as they travel south tonight to take on the Carolina Hurricanes (8-14-4) at 7 p.m (TV: MSG). The Hurricanes have lost their four games in a row.
The Rangers will tried to stay focused against a struggling club in Carolina which has been dreadful at home this season (their 9 home losses are tied for worst in the league). New York has taken three of the last four meetings with the Hurricanes.
The key for the Rangers will be Henrik Lundqvist in net. In his last nine games, not much has gotten by him (1.88 GAA). If Lundqvist is playing that well again tonight, the Rangers won't need much offense. Carolina's goalie Cam Ward has played well against New York in his last seven games against the Rangers but is allowing 2.74 goals per game during the Hurricanes' current losing streak.
The last time the Rangers and Hurricanes met, Lundqvist stopped 34 shots and Ryan Callahan, Brandon Dubinsky and Brad Richards each had a goal and an assist in a 5-1 win on Nov. 11. Cam Ward made 35 stops for the Hurricanes in that game.