Wednesday night is rivalry night! The New York Rangers put their six-game win streak on the line as they visit the windy city and the Chicago Blackhawks for a prime-time matchup tonight at 8 p.m. The Rangers who have won six in a row and are red hot on the power-play, and get ready to face Chicago for the first time this year. This is the first of two matchups between these original six teams.
The Blackhawks had a disappointing end to last year with them getting swept in the first round by the eventual Western Conference Champion Nashville Predators. The biggest trade was Chicago sending Artemi Panarin and Tyler Motte to Columbus for Brandon Saad. Saad is back in a familiar place where he had much success before being sent to Columbus. Connor Murphy was added on the back end when he was acquired from the Arizona Coyotes in exchange for Niklas Hjalmarsson. Patrick Sharp was also brought in on a one year deal for his second tour in Chicago. So far it has been a mediocre season for the Blackhawks, being 8-8-2 through their first 18 games.
The Rangers on the other hand have been firing on all cylinders. They currently sit third in the league in terms of power play percentage with a respectful 25.8 percent. Kevin Shattenkirk has been everything they have hoped for and more, especially leading the troops on the power play. The top line of Chris Kreider, Mika Zibanejad, and Pavel Buchnevich has been unstoppable this year. Zibanejad, Shattenkirk, and Buchnevich lead the Rangers with 18, 17, and 15 points respectively. Henrik Lundqvist has settled down a tad, but we can expect to see more from “The King”.
Original six matchups are always fun and call for an eventful game, especially when it is on primetime(NBCSN) for everyone to see. Rangers Blackhawks tilt never disappoints. Will Chicago find its game and end the Rangers’ win streak at six? Or will the Rangers enter Chi-town and make it seven in a row? Find out tonight at 8 p.m. on NBCSN.