Rangers bracing for stretch against some familiar foes

With the postponement of their Saturday afternoon game in Ottawa due to the Senators’ COVID-19 outbreak, the Rangers travel home for a stretch of five games in which they will play three in New York, one in Boston and another in Philadelphia.

It is still unclear when the Rangers’ game against the Senators will be rescheduled, but as of now, they won’t travel back to Canada until March.

The upcoming opponents — the Sabres, Islanders, Bruins and Flyers — are all teams the Rangers played eight times each last season in the East Division, which was created amid the NHL’s restructure because of the coronavirus pandemic. Before this stretch, a majority of the Rangers’ opposition were teams they hadn’t squared off against since the 2019-20 season.

Only two of the games against familiar opponents were the season-opening defeat against the Capitals as well as the shootout victory over the Devils (4-3).

Igor Shesterkin and the Rangers will be facing some familiar foes in the upcoming games.
In the coming games, Igor Shesterkin’s Rangers will have to face familiar foes.
NHLI via Getty Images

The Sabres will be playing at Madison Square Garden on Sunday. Last season, the Rangers beat Buffalo 6-2. They were outscored 27-15. The Blueshirts will then venture out to Long Island to play their first ever game at the Islanders’ brand new UBS Arena on Wednesday before facing the Isles again on Sunday at home.

The Rangers will travel to Boston in the middle of the two games against Islanders. This is their first trip since beating the Bruins twice during preseason. On Dec. 1, the Rangers take on the Flyers at Madison Square Garden.

Northwell Health, the Rangers, and Northwell Health are hosting their Hockey Fights Cancer match against the Sabres on Sunday.

Hockey Fights Cancer jerseys will be worn by players in warm-ups. Special tape will also be applied to the sticks. The Rangers plan to have a HFC patch in their practice jerseys, according to a press release. Along with the patches and custom jerseys, the sticks and sticks will all be signed by the Rangers and sold off at an auction, with proceeds going to Northwell Health Foundation, and Garden of Dream Foundation.

Rangers’ coaching staff as well as MSG network celebrities will be wearing HFC ties, pins, and other accessories. Fans will also have the opportunity to pick up a “I Fight For” placard throughout the Madison Square Garden concourses.

Kaapo Kakko’s secondary assist on Dryden Hunt’s first goal as a Ranger in the 2-1 loss to the Maple Leafs on Thursday marked the Finnish winger’s third straight game with a point. One game is left for him to tie his long-standing point streak, which began April 6-11 of last year.

Thursday’s game in Toronto counted as Filip Chytil’s 200th career NHL game, all of which have come with the Rangers. This 22-year old center is now the 96th Czech Republic-born hockey player to have played in 200 NHL games.

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