Apr 25, 2012, 12:57 PM EDT
Here’s everything you need to know — television and start time-wise, anyway — for what promises to be a nail-biting night of NHL playoff action on Thursday.
New York Rangers vs. Ottawa Senators
— Puck drop at 7 p.m. ET from Madison Square Garden.
— Game can be seen on NBC Sports Network.
Florida Panthers vs. New Jersey Devils
— Puck drop at 8:30 p.m. ET from the BankAtlantic Center in Florida.
— Game can be seen on NHL Network to start; will be joined in progress by NBC Sports Network following the conclusion of Rangers-Senators.
— This will be the second time in four years the Rangers have gone to Game 7 in the opening round. In 2008-09, the Blueshirts lost to Washington on a late goal from Sergei Fedorov. Interestingly, only six players from that team are still with the Rangers: Artem Anisimov, Brandon Dubinsky, Marc Staal, Ryan Callahan, Dan Girardi and Henrik Lundqvist.
— Ottawa hasn’t played a Game 7 since before the lockout. But prior to the lockout, the Sens were one of the least successful Game 7 teams around, losing to Toronto in 2002, New Jersey in 2003 and Toronto again in 2004.
— If there’s a team with a decided Game 7 advantage, it’s New Jersey. Martin Brodeur has a wealth of experience in these situations — Thursday will be his 10th Game 7 — and he’s 3-1 in his last four.
— The Panthers have played one Game 7 in franchise history: The 1996 Eastern Conference finals against Pittsburgh. In that game, Tom Fitzgerald, Johan Garpenlov and Mike Hough scored the goals in a 3-1 victory while John Vanbiesbrouck stopped 39 of 40 shots.
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