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Carolina Hurricanes at New York Rangers: Game Preview 11-2-13

A Saturday night match-up in The Big Apple as the Hurricanes visit the newly-renovated Madison Square Garden to take on the New York Rangers.

Newest Hurricane Manny Malhotra was 75% in the faceoff circle last night.
Newest Hurricane Manny Malhotra was 75% in the faceoff circle last night.
Jamie Kellner

Carolina Hurricanes at New York Rangers
Saturday, November 2, 2013 - 7:00 pm ET
Madison Square Garden - New York, NY
TV - Fox Sports Carolinas
Radio - 99.9 The Fan

SB Nation Rival Blog: Blueshirt Banter (twitter @BlueshirtBanter)

Hurricanes Record: 4-6-3 (11 pts.)
Rangers Record: 5-7-0 (10 pts.)

The Hurricanes face their new Metropolitan division rivals tonight for the first of five games this season. The Rangers swept last year's series but the Canes gained points in two out of three games with overtime/shootout losses.

The Hurricanes were shut out 2-0 last night at the hands of the Tampa Bay Lightning, while the Rangers shut out the Buffalo Sabres 2-0 on Thursday night.

The Hurricanes come in to Madison Square Garden tonight on a four-game losing streak and have dropped behind the Islanders and Capitals to fourth place in the Metropolitan division. The Rangers have won three of their last four, including a two-game win streak.

The Canes will not skate this morning and will not have media availability, so we only know what we knew as of last night's game in terms of the line-up. Jeff Skinner (IR, upper body) and Kevin Westgarth (upper body) were previously reported to miss the weekend, but Radek Dvorak (upper body) and Brett Bellemore (IR, lower body) may be available.

UPDATE 12:45 pm: The Canes have activated Brett Bellemore from IR (news release) so he should be in the line-up tonight.

Line-up based on last night's game:


Jiri Tlusty

Eric Staal

Alexander Semin

Nathan Gerbe

Jordan Staal

Patrick Dwyer

Tuomo Ruutu

Riley Nash

Elias Lindholm

Drayson Bowman

Manny Malhotra

Brett Sutter

Jeff Skinner (IR)

Kevin Westgarth

Radek Dvorak


Andrej Sekera

Justin Faulk

Tim Gleason

Ron Hainsey

Jay Harrison

Ryan Murphy

Brett Bellemore (IR)

Mike Komisarek


Justin Peters

Mike Murphy

Depth Chart
Injury Report

The Rangers started off slow but have won three of their last four games and are moving up in the division. They aren't scoring a lot of goals (although trending upward in puck possession).  Chris Kreider has provided a needed offensive boost since being recalled from Hartford five games ago, with goals in back-to-back games. The Rangers don't give up a lot of goals either, giving up two goals or less in their last five games. After missing games with an undisclosed injury, goaltender Henrik Lundqvist has given up two goals and pitched a 29-save shutout Thursday night.

Projected line-up:

Carl Hagelin - Brad Richards - Benoit Pouliot

Chris Kreider - Derek Stepan - Mats Zuccarello

Taylor Pyatt - Derick Brassard - J.T. Miller

Brandon Mashinter - Brian Boyle - Derek Dorsett

Ryan McDonagh - Dan Girardi

Marc Staal - Anton Stralman

John Moore - Michael Del Zotto

Henrik Lundqvist

Cam Talbot

The Rangers will be missing captain Ryan Callahan (broken thumb), Rick Nash (concussion), and Dominic Moore (strained oblique muscle).

One last note, three out of the four sod farmers will be on the ice tonight.  The last time the teams met, at the end of last season, the Hurricanes started Eric, Jordan, and Jared Staal while brother Marc watched from the sidelines recovering from injury.  Jared won't be there tonight, but look for Marc's return against his brothers to generate the requisite media buzz.

We'll have the game thread open at 6:30 pm. See you there.