Jan 19, 2013; Boston, MA, USA; New York Rangers right wing Ryan Callahan (24) and Boston Bruins defenseman Andrew Ference (21) fight for a rebound in front of Boston Bruins goaltender Tuukka Rask (40) during the second period at TD Garden. Mandatory Credit: Michael Ivins-USA TODAY Sports

Rubber Match: New York Rangers Vs Boston Bruins Tuesday Night 7:30 EST


We’re about a quarter of a way through this condensed 2013 NHL season and the Boston Bruins are preparing to wrap up their season series with the New York Rangers tonight at the Garden on Causeway Street.

The Rangers (6-5-0) are one of only two teams to have beaten the Bruins (8-1-1) this season, albeit it took overtime and a Vanek-like game by Marian Gaborik to get the job done for New York.

So far, it’s been an up-and-down season for the Rangers, who recently broke out of a slump by beating the equally up-and-down Tampa Bay Lightning and the New York “we can’t get out of our own way” Islanders.

A win against the Bruins in Boston would certainly go a long way to helping the Rangers confidence, while keeping their current mini win streak going. They can also show the league, the media and their fans that they can win big games when they need to, because so far that haven’t really done that and they have an abysmal 2-4-0 record against their own Atlantic Division foes. Which in a shortened season, division games are just a tad more important than usual.

The Bruins on the other hand will be looking to just keep the good times rolling and hopefully work on their ungodly awful power play that currently is 3rd to worst in the league, clicking just 10.3% of the time. If it makes you feel any better (it shouldn’t) the Rangers power play is equally as useless while connecting 10% of the time.

Both teams are pretty healthy and should have full rosters headed into tonight’s marquis matchup. The Bruins recently got the services of Daniel Paille, Shawn Thornton and Brad Marchand back, while on the other side the Rangers recently got their captain back, Ryan Callahan, and called up J.T. Miller who has wasted no time making his name known.

I’m anticipating Tuukka Rask (6-1-1, 1.96 GAA, .922 SV%) to get the start for the B’s and Henrik Lundqvist (5-5-0, 2.44 GAA, .911 SV%) to get the nod for the Rangers. As always I’m sure these two will have no shortage of chances to put themselves into some top-10 plays highlight reels.

Should be a good game, usually is when theses two Original-6 teams get together. I’m expecting no shortage of goals, hits and fights. How’s that for expert analysis? If I’m wrong (which I usually am) and there’s not a lot of goals I’d bet my house it’d be because of Rask and Lundqvist. If there’s not a lot of hits or fights, well then I guess we’ll be watching a soccer game.

Puck drops at around 7:30 PM EST and I’ll be watching, will you?

Tags: Boston Bruins New York Rangers NHL