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Rangers Welcome in Another Old Friend in WNR Showdown Vs. Pens

The New York Rangers will welcome back another old friend to Madison Square Garden tonight, one that wasn’t bid farewell in the recent trade deadline moves, but one who will wear the colors of one of their biggest rivals.

Derick Brassard comes to Madison Square Garden for the first time as a Pittsburgh Penguin tonight, as the Rangers square off with their Metropolitan foes tonight at home (8:00 PM, NBCSN).

The Rangers (31-32-7) are coming an 6-3 win over the Carolina Hurricanes at MSG. It was a night of milestones for the Rangers, as Jimmy Vesey recorded his first career NHL hat trick, which included the game winner in the third period. Mats Zuccarello also had two goals, the latter of which was the 100th of his NHL career. Vladislav Namestnikov had the other Rangers goal, scoring on the power play, while Alexander Georgiev, who will also start tonight, had 41 saves to earn his first win at MSG.

The Penguins (40-26-4) continue to slug it out for the Metropolitan Division title, as they’re currently one point behind the Washington Capitals for the lead. They enter winning four of their past five, including Sunday’s 3-1 win over the Dallas Stars. Two first period goals, including one by Jamie Oleksiak with four seconds remaining, was all the Penguins needed, while Evgeni Malkin sealed things up with an empty netter, his 39th score of the season.

This will be the final meeting between the Rangers and Penguins this season, with Pittsburgh having taken two of the first three. The Rangers’ win came back on December 5, a 4-3 win at PPG Paints Arena. Zuccarello put in a goal and assisted on another, while Pavel Buchnevich scored in the third period to settle things in the third period. Ondrej Pavelec made 41 saves in victory.

Geoff Magliocchetti is on Twitter @GeoffMags5490

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