Preview: Senators at Rangers
The New York Rangers defeated the Ottawa Senators to improve to 2-0-0 on the young season before being saddled with five straight losses (0-4-1). Wins in three of their next four contests followed for the Rangers, who begin a modest two-game homestand against the struggling Senators on Monday.
Filip Chytil has made an immediate impact since being recalled from Hartford of the American Hockey League, scoring in his season debut to lift New York to a 4-1 victory over Tampa Bay on Tuesday before tallying again four days later in a 2-1 wins over Nashville. "Filip has come back and played with a purpose and a pace," Rangers coach David Quinn told reporters of the 20-year-old. "I love his intentions. He's always had the skill set, but there's a different element to his game that he's added since he went down to Hartford. He's been playing like a second-line center." Anthony Duclair has stepped up his play with four goals in his last four contests, however Ottawa began its three-game road trip on Saturday with a 5-2 setback in Boston. Connor Brown also tallied versus the Bruins for his second goal in as many contests and carries a five-game point streak (two goals, four assists) into Monday's encounter at Madison Square Garden.
TV: 7 p.m. ET, TSN5, RDS (Ottawa), MSG (New York)
ABOUT THE SENATORS (3-8-1): Fourth-line forward Scott Sabourin took to Twitter on Sunday morning to update his status, mere hours after he sustained a fractured nose following a check he initiated to Bruins forward David Backes. "Thanks for all the well wishes. Hope to be back out on the ice in the near future," wrote the 27-year-old Sabourin, who sported a chipped tooth, a black eye and a few facial lacerations. Fellow forward Brady Tkachuk scored his team's lone goal against the Rangers last month and has five points (two goals, three assists) in four career encounters with the club.
ABOUT THE RANGERS (5-5-1): Ryan Strome has flourished on the top line in the absence of former Senator Mika Zibanejad (upper body) and carries a career-high six-game point streak (four goals, five assists) into Monday's tilt. "Strome has had a good year - not just since Mika's been out," Quinn said of the 26-year-old Ontario native. "... He's had a really good year. He's done a lot of good things. He's killed penalties, he's done a good job on the power play, and I like a lot about his game right now." While Strome was held off the scoresheet in the first encounter against the Senators, Artemi Panarin scored a goal and set up another in that contest and sports a four-game point streak (one goal, four assists) heading into Monday's outing.
1. Ottawa RW Bobby Ryan has been a healthy scratch in each of the last two games.
2. Rangers RW Jesper Fast recorded five points (two goals, three assists) in his last seven contests.
3. Senators D Cody Goloubef, who sat for the 12th straight game on Saturday, is expected to make his debut either Monday or in Tuesday's contest versus the New York Islanders.
PREDICTION: Rangers 4, Senators 2