By Nic Carafa
Two games are on a light NHL schedule Monday night, with the Rangers looking to avenge a 6-0 loss to the Ducks and the Red Wings trying to keep an early-season surge going when they take on the meandering Jets.
DUCKS (11-3-1) at RANGERS (6-7-0)
The last time these two teams met, the New York Rangers were handed a 6-0 beat down in Southern California. When the Anaheim Ducks make their way to a newly renovated MSG, it will bring an end to their season-long eight-game road trip. The Ducks are coming to the Big Apple to play a hot Rangers team, who are looking to win their fourth straight game. But the Ducks, despite being one of the elite teams in the NHL to start the season, are having trouble scoring on the power play, converting on a league-worst 6.9 percent. Good luck trying to beat Henrik Lundqvist with that: ‘The King’ has managed a 1.00 GAA over his past three games.
Since returning home after starting the season with nine-straight games on the road, the Rangers are turning things around and have won three straight games. (NY Post)
Because of a few injuries, the Ducks were forced to dip into their AHL affiliate team, the Norfolk Admirals, for some reinforcements (NHL.com)
Player to Watch: Corey Perry. Sure the Ducks’ 6.9 power play percentage is embarrassing, but they’re still finding ways to win hockey games. Perry has six points in his past five games, so that has to count for something right?
RED WINGS (9-2-2) at JETS (5-8-2)
When the Detroit Red Wings and the Winnipeg Jets meet up at the MTS Centre tonight, it will be a contest between two teams that were at the center of the NHL’s off-season realignment. One team, the Red Wings, are enjoying their time in the East and have started the season 9-4-2, while the Jets are struggling in a tough Western Conference and have hobbled out of the gate, 5-8-2. The only statistic the Jets have over the Red Wings is shots on goal. Everything else tilts in the Wings’ favor.
Darren Helm had been out of the lineup for nine months, but he had an immediate impact for the winged wheels over the weekend. (Detroit Free Press)
The honeymoon may be over for the Jets, but the team’s 5-8-2 record to start the season doesn’t have GM Kevin Cheveldayoff worried – and he isn’t planning to stray away from the long-term plan. (Winnipeg Free Press)
Player to Watch: Pavel Datsyuk. This guy has been the definition of consistent since he made his debut in the 2001-02 season. He’s averaging a point-per-game this year and is tied for the team lead with a plus-7 rating. Not too shabby.