It's east coast vs. west coast, minus any rapper beef. Who would have thought that through the first two weeks of the season the Rangers and Kings would be two of the NHL's best? The winner of tonight's game will find themselves on their longest winning streak since the lockout. Erik Ersberg(notes) should spell Jon Quick(notes) in goal for the Kings tonight while the Rangers own "king", Henrik Lundqvist(notes), will be back between the pipes for New York.
Everybody break out your Staal vs. Staal drinking game now that Eric is expected to be in the ‘Canes lineup tonight. In a rematch of last spring's Eastern Conference final, Cam Ward(notes) will look to extend his five-game winning streak against the Penguins in the regular season and Pittsburgh will attempt to set a franchise record with their fifth straight win on the road to open a season.
Seven goals through four games is not what Barry Trotz expected out of his team. Nashville was blown out at home by Edmonton on Monday and wasted a 41 save performance from Pekka Rinne(notes) on Saturday in a 1-0 loss to Buffalo. Don't expect J.P. Dumont's(notes) return tonight as he's still feeling concussion-like symptons from being drilled by Stephane Robidas the last time these two teams met, but do expect some changes in the lines for the Predators.
Former teammates Nikolai Khabibulin(notes) and Cristobal Huet(notes) will not square off tonight as Antti Niemi(notes) gets the call for the Blackhawks. For the Oilers, do they have a brewing goalie controversy with Jeff Deslauriers(notes) impressing in a 6-1 win over Nashville on Monday night?
Minnesota's only win this season came against Anaheim last Tuesday night and since then, head coach Todd Richards is trying to find the right chemistry on his lines and his move for tonight is to mix up the defense pairings. The Wild defense is in the bottom five in the NHL averaging 3.75 goals-allowed/game.
-The Capitals and their season ticket holders held a get together at the local Six Flags America. Much funnel cake was had. [On Frozen Blog]
-Looking at the best and worst shooting percentages seo far. Nashville at 4.7%? Ouch. [Hockey or Die]
-Furthering the discussion about re-jiggering NHL standings, Jared adds his two cents and asks, "What's wrong with a tie?" [Smilin' Like a Butcher's Dog]
Puck Buddy Comment of the Day: Cody/Diesel Photos on Oliver Wahlstrom's trick shot:
"Ay yo, Oliver, I'm really happy for you and I'ma let you finish, but Mike Legg had one of the sickest shots of all time."
Bold Prediction: Chris Kunitz(notes), he of one goal in his last 35 regular-season and playoff games with the Penguins, will get off the schneid and pot one tonight.
- New York Rangers