JETBLAST: WINNIPEG @ NEW YORK

JETBLAST

Winnipeg Jets (4-5-1) at New York Rangers (5-4-0) 6:00 p.m., Madison Square Center, TV: Sportsnet  Radio:TSN 1290

The Winnipeg Jets finish their tour of the state of New York Saturday evening when they visit Madison Square Gardens to take on the New York Rangers. It is the third game in a 4 game road trip for Winnipeg and will be the front end of a back to back this weekend. This is a hugely important game for both teams, the Jets are still struggling to keep their heads above water early this season while New York, after a terrible start tries to get it going and again be an elite team in the NHL. Jets vs Rangers, Lets Go!

Rangers

The New Jersey York Rangers since starting so poorly have now won 4 of their last 5 and appear to be regaining the form that made them a contender. They should if nothing else be well rested coming into tonight having not played since a win against Minnesota October 27th. The big surprise this season in New York is the play of star goaltender Henrik Lundqvist. The man who has been counted on for so many years has let the Rangers down early this season and has a save percentage under .900 which is a shockingly low number for king Henrik. A positive for the Rangers on the other hand is the play of Rick Nash. The big Canadian forward has been key in the Rangers offense and is back to the form that had him as one of the best in the league for so long. These two players will go a long way to determining Success in the Big Apple.

Jets

The Jets return to the ice after a disappointing result in New Jersey. The 2-1 shootout loss gave the Devils their first shootout win in 600 days, and once again failed to get back to .500. It was a familiar story Jets fans watched, the inability to score kept the Devils in the game just long enough for them to get an offensive chance and they made no mistake. When Blake Wheeler scored to make it 1-0 it appeared the Jets were poised to take advantage of a struggling team. However, chance after chance passed the Jets by and they could not extend the lead, a problem getting all to common for this team. The reunited line of Kane, Scheifele, and Wheeler did provide Jets fans with some positives, many chances, and a different look from the Jets. In his first game back since the knee injury that saw him miss 8 games, Evander Kane had some positives and negatives but it is to be expected after missing so much time. You hope they before long he can bring the scoring punch this team so desperately needs.

Keys to the Game

Shoot the puck: At times last night the Jets had chances and seemed to pass them away. Put the puck to the net and make things happen.

Manage expectations: With two games against very tough opponents this weekend the Jets need to know they cannot come out and run and gun with both teams and come out with 4 points.

Goaltending: It is expected we will see both Jets goalies play this weekend, Hutchinson will be looking for a far better performance from his first start and Pavelec will be looking to silence critics like most every night.

Starting Goalies

Ondrej Pavelec (4-4-1) GAA: 2.34 SV% .908
Henrik Lundqvist (5-3-0) GAA: 3.25 SV% .891

Injuries

Peluso, WPG, (UBI) day-to-day

Boyle, NY, (Broken Hand) out
Stepan, NY, (Fractured Fibula) out

Last 10 (W-L-OTL)

Jets: 4-5-1
Rangers: 5-4-0

Prediction

Rangers to strong for Jets, take 2 points.
Rangers 3 Jets 2

Become an MVP

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Diehard Winnipeg sports fan. Agree or disagree with something I wrote? Find me on twitter @seantheoilcan and let me know Go Jets Go!

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