With Christmas fast approaching, the New York Rangers get an early gift, as Mika Zibanejad is expected to return to the lineup tonight from an injury-related absence.
They’ll look to deal the Anaheim Ducks a lump of coal to their stockings, as they arrive to Madison Square Garden for an interconfernece showdown (7:00 PM, MSG).
The Rangers (18-12-3) are looking to earn their third straight win, as they earned wins in a weekend back-to-back, earning equivalent 3-2 victories over Los Angeles and Boston. The latter took place on Saturday at TD Garden, as the Rangers earned an overtime victory. Michael Grabner scored his team-high 16th of the season, bouncing one off of the back of Tukka Rask in the first, while JT Miller earned a power play goal in the second. After Boston knotted it up, the game went to an extra period, where Mats Zuccarello earned another power play tally to provided the walk-off win.
— NHL (@NHL) December 17, 2017
Meanwhile, the Ducks (14-12-8) are in the midst of an Eastern swing, having dropped a 5-3 decision to the New Jersey Devils last night in Newark. Anaheim, facing off with the Devils since a trade that exchanged Adam Henrique and Sami Vatanen. Henrique had the last of the Anaheim goals, giving them a 3-1 lead in the second, but four unanswered Devils goals gave them a 5-3 comeback victory. Ryan Getzlaf and Jakob Silfverburg had the other Ducks scores.
What a goal by Adam Henrique on his return to New Jersey pic.twitter.com/CXGrX7JaCO
— Right Wing, Shoots Left (@HILITINGHOCKEY) December 19, 2017
This will be the first of two meetings between the Rangers and Ducks this season, with the rematch at Honda Center slated for January 23. The two teams split the set last season, with each winning on their respective home ices. In the MSG matchup in February, Lundqvist made 43 saves, while Grabner added two third period goals to give the Rangers a 4-1 win.
Geoff Magliocchetti is on Twitter @GeoffMags5490