(SportsNetwork.com) - Two of the lowest-scoring teams in the NHL get together
in the Garden State on Saturday night, when the New York Rangers continue
their road trip against the winless New Jersey Devils.
The Rangers have lost four of six to begin the season, ranking 28th in the NHL
with just 1.83 goals per game. That is just behind the Devils' average of 1.86
New Jersey has lost a club-record seven straight to begin the season, going
0-4-3 while losing each of its past three contests in regulation.
The Rangers won three of four against the Devils last season, splitting a pair
of meetings in New Jersey. New York snapped a three-game road slide in the
series with a 3-2 win on March 19.
The Blueshirts are opening the campaign with nine in a row on the road and
struggled on the west coast portion of the swing. They lost four of five,
getting outscored 20-5 during a three-game slide that was snapped with
Wednesday's 2-0 victory in Washington.
Finally back east, Henrik Lundqvist made 22 saves, while Brad Richards set up
goals by John Moore and Ryan Callahan that were scored 1:46 apart in the
The Rangers' maligned defense kept the Capitals scoreless on four power-play
attempts, including 55 seconds of a two-man advantage in the first period.
"I was a little more aggressive today, and I felt good, but we really set the
tone in the first period (with) the way we killed off the penalties," said
Lundqvist following his 46th career shutout.
Lundqvist was in net for all four games versus the Devils last season, going
3-1-0 with a 1.51 goals against average and one shutout.
New York, though, lost Callahan for the next 3-to-4 weeks due to a broken
thumb. The Rangers captain has three goals in five games, missing the first
contest of the season following offseason shoulder surgery.
Callahan's absence further impacts an offense that has been without Rick Nash
for the past three games due to a concussion and Carl Hagelin through the
first six outings following shoulder surgery during the offseason.
Defenseman Michael Del Zotto missed Wednesday's game with the flu.
The Devils have had their own problems as they have scored just 13 goals on
the year. They are 2-for-22 on the power play, scoring once on seven chances
in Thursday's 5-2 setback in Ottawa.
Steve Bernier and Travis Zajac each lit the lamp once for the Devils, who saw
goaltender Martin Brodeur give up four goals on 22 shots.
"We're seven games in, we haven't found a way to get a win yet," New Jersey
center Ryan Carter said. "You can't look for excuses."
New Jersey was without forward Ryane Clowe on Thursday due to a head injury
and he won't play tonight either after having been placed on injured reserve
the previous day.
The Devils are set to play at home for the first time since Oct. 4 tonight and
for only the second time overall this season. Thursday's loss wrapped a five-
game tour through Canada.
Brodeur has made four starts on the season, posting a 3.40 GAA and tonight is
expected to back up Cory Schneider, who has logged a 2.65 GAA over his three
starts with the Devils.
Schneider has faced the Rangers just once before while with Vancouver. He
suffered a 1-0 loss in New York on Jan. 13, 2011, making 34 saves.
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