The New York Rangers finished three games behind in Ottawa thanks to 34 saves from backup goaltender Jaroslav Halak. Now the focus shifts to sweeping the home and away series against the Senators on Friday night at Madison Square Garden.
That was Halak’s first win of the season since signing in July, having been 0-5-1 in six previous attempts.
“I’m just trying to help the guys get some points and win some games,” Halak said via the team’s YouTube channel. “It’s a big win for me personally, but two points for the team to move up.”
The 37-year-old is the seventh goalkeeper in league history to win at least one game with seven different clubs.
Here is tonight’s game and broadcast information:
New York Rangers (11-9-4) vs. Ottawa Senators (8-13-1)
appointment time: December 2, 2022 at 7:00 p.m. ET
Arena: Madison Square Garden
Radio: ESPN 98.7
The New York Rangers seek the sweep of Sens
The Blushirts are running a morning run today at 10:30 am at the MSG Training Center. That should give you an idea of what the lineup will look like. Considering that Gerard Gallant doesn’t like changing a winning lineup, we might very well not see any changes. That could also include Halak making his first consecutive starts this season.
With the Rangers scheduled to play the Chicago Blackhawks again on Saturday night, a goaltender split is expected. Igor Shesterkin could sit out another game before coming back after two tough defeats in which he was extremely hard on himself.
“The goalkeeper played [expletive] Play again,” Shesterkin said after losing to the Devils on Monday. “I feel so bad and play so bad. I am ashamed. Every goal is an easy game for me. I have to stop that. If our team wants to win the game, I have to play better.”
Shesterkin, who is 10-4-3 in the season with a 2.58 GAA and a .913 save rate, may have been way too hard on himself. That led to questions for the coach if he was worried about his star- goalie made.
“He’s a pro. He wants to win,” Gallant said on Wednesday. “So that’s what guys do all the time. If you’re not happy with your performance, blame yourself, not someone else. Igor has been the best goaltender in the NHL since I’ve been here like 100 games or whatever and I’m really lucky to have him trust me.”
The best news of the last game was the team’s ability to hold the lead and get a win. Now they will try to repeat that effort and work their way back up the division standings.
The Rangers, coming into the game tonight, are fifth in the Metro Division, four points behind the third-ranked New York Islanders and two behind the fourth-ranked Pittsburgh Penguins. They’re also a point behind the Detroit Red Wings (two games in hand) for the last wildcard spot.
Rangers Match Notes
- All-time NYR vs. Sens 47-48-3-4 (101 PTS)
- NYR has won against the Sens four times in a row
- NYR is one of three teams that has three or more 25-point players
- NYR is 3-1-1 in the first game of this season
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