Detroit Red Wings (20-16-10) at New York Rangers (24-21-3)
|Date & Time||Thursday January 16, 2014, 7:00 PM (EST)|
The Line: New York Rangers -147 / Detroit Red Wings +134 --- Over/Under: 5
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The New York Rangers did just about everything they could on Tuesday night when they hosted the Tampa Bay Lightning but they still couldn't walk away with a win. New York fired 35 shots on goal in the game, many of which were high quality scoring chances, but all but one was kept out by Ben Bishop. The Rangers got a first period goal from Brad Richards that gave them a 1-0 lead but it was a couple of mistakes early in the second period that cost them. Shorthanded to start the second period the Rangers allowed the tying goal and watched as the Lightning took the lead just nine seconds later on a designed play off a face off. Rangers head coach Alain Vigneault was visibly annoyed by his team falling asleep at the wheel and it ultimately cost them the hockey game because they were unable to get the equalizer. Despite the loss it was another encouraging effort for a Ranger club that continues to press the issue and generate plenty of opportunities. New York's power play has been so good of late and it let them down on Tuesday night but there's still a lot of positives to take from this game. If the Rangers can keep playing with this kind of effort they're going to win a lot more games than they lose. Henrik Lundqvist has been slowly coming around and New York can only hope that he really hits his stride during the second half of the season. In to town comes the Detroit Red Wings who will be looking to bounce back from a difficult 1-0 loss to the Anaheim Ducks their last time out. Petr Mrazek played excellent in goal but neither team generated many shots and the second period goal he allowed proved to be the difference. Detroit currently occupies the fifth spot in the Atlantic Division, seven points behind third place and an automatic playoff berth. To say the season has been a struggle for the Red Wings would be an understatement but there's still plenty of time left for them. A win on Thursday night would be extremely beneficial for Detroit because this hockey club needs some good vibes heading into a lengthy home stand that could change their season. After their contest at Madison Square Garden the Red Wings will play five straight at Joe Louis Arena and six of seven. Though Detroit hasn't been a particularly good home team this year they'll need to find a way to change that if they expect to be a playoff team so this would be a good time to start. This should be a fun one between two original six teams but if the Rangers can keep playing the way they have been they should have a leg up in this one. Jimmy Howard hasn't quite been on the same level as Ben Bishop this season and that was the only thing stopping New York from another victory on Tuesday night.