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Get your game notes: Rangers at Blackhawks

Jan 8, 2014, 10:56 AM EDT

RichardsToews Getty Images

Tonight on NBCSN, it’s the Chicago Blackhawks hosting the New York Rangers starting at 8 p.m. ET. Following are some game notes, as compiled by the NHL on NBC research team:

• The Rangers are one of only two teams (Detroit) with a winning road record (13-10-0) and a losing home record (8-10-3) this season. They started the season 3-6-0 on a franchise-long 9-game road trip that ended Oct. 26; since then, they have gone 10-4-0, including 3-1-0 in their last four.

• In the NHL, 11 players have a plus/minus rating of +20 or higher. Four of them are Blackhawks: wingers Patrick Sharp, Marian Hossa and defenseman Brent Seabrook (+22), and center Jonathan Toews (+21). No other team has more than two players over +20 (Pittsburgh, St. Louis, Anaheim). Only one current Chicago player has a minus rating: winger Bryan Bickell (-4).

• The Blackhawks lead the NHL in goals (163) and goals/game (3.62), and their average goal differential (1.00) trails only St. Louis (1.34). However, they have scored two or fewer goals in three of the last four games, going 1-0-2 in those three.

• Blackhawks goaltender Corey Crawford has lost his last four decisions (0-2-2), dating back to Dec. 3 (he missed 10 games with a lower-body injury). The six-year veteran has done that twice: five straight losses (0-4-1) from Jan. 21-Feb. 10, 2012, and four straight (0-4-0) from Oct. 13-Nov. 7, 2010.

• Blackhawks wingers Patrick Sharp (25 goals – 2nd in NHL) and Patrick Kane (23 goals – T-6th) are the highest-scoring teammates in the league, with 48 goals. Pittsburgh’s Sidney Crosby and Chris Kunitz rank second (24+23=47), followed by Anaheim’s Corey Perry and Ryan Getzlaf (24+20=44).

• Alain Vigneault (MTL, VAN, NYR) and Joel Quenneville (STL, COL, CHI) have manned opposite benches 42 times in the regular season during their NHL coaching careers. Vigneault is 18-18-6 against Quenneville-coached clubs.

• Six teams account for the NHL’s top 15 in points. The Blackhawks have four players among that group: Patrick Kane (54, T-2nd), Patrick Sharp (46, T-7th), Jonathan Toews (44, 11th) and Duncan Keith (42, T-14th). Pittsburgh (Crosby, Kunitz, Malkin) has three, while the N.Y. Islanders (Tavares, Okposo), Anaheim (Getzlaf, Perry), San Jose (Thornton, Marleau) and Washington (Backstrom, Ovechkin) each have two.

• Rangers LW Rick Nash has scored more points against the Blackhawks (24-27=51 in 55 games) than against any other NHL team. However, he hasn’t tasted victory against them since Feb. 18, 2011, as a member of the Columbus Blue Jackets (0-6-0).

  1. rpiotr01 - Jan 8, 2014 at 1:19 PM

    Rangers have been playing a little better of late, but this game should register somewhere between a ‘spanking’ and a ‘shellacking.’

    • jhaegs - Jan 8, 2014 at 9:03 PM

      Not panning out that way so far…

      • rpiotr01 - Jan 9, 2014 at 9:47 AM

        Nope, Rangers played well, got lucky on Zucs goal. I’ll take it!

  2. cofran2004 - Jan 8, 2014 at 1:27 PM

    Not that this is what I’m rooting for, being a rangers fan and all… but…

    I really think that everyone that watches this game will actually be watching a play entitled ” Billy the Bug and Wendy the Windshield. The role of “Billy” will be played by my beloved New York Rangers, and the starring role of Wendy will be portrayed by the Chicago Black Hawks. Plot synopsis is thus:

    When Billy flies through the skies, he does so in a haphazard manner, not minding if other bugs buzz right by him and attack his friend, Henry the goalie-beetle (who is feeling the effects of mother nature (played by Gary Bettman and friends) reducing the amount of chitin he is allowed to have attached to his body).

    Wendy the Windshield, however, has no love for lazy bugs who don’t defend their goalie-beetles (or goalie-beetles themselves for that matter, as evidenced by their 3.62 smashes per drive-by). When she see’s Billy fly into her neighborhood, sparks will fly…

    I’m sick to my stomach thinking about this play… Ugh…

    • cofran2004 - Jan 9, 2014 at 6:53 AM

      Every so often, Billy wins…

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