NHL Preview from The Sports Network|
Thursday, December 1st
(All times Eastern)
New York Rangers (13-5-3) at Carolina Hurricanes (8-14-4), 7 p.m.
(Sports Network) - The sliding Carolina Hurricanes will try to get their new
head coach a win when they host the New York Rangers in tonight's battle at
Kirk Muller, who replaced the fired Paul Maurice on Monday, made his debut
behind the bench in Tuesday's game against visiting Florida, but the
Hurricanes were dealt a fourth straight loss and fell to 8-14-4 on the season.
The Hurricanes were handed a 3-1 loss by the Panthers, as Shawn Matthias
scored twice, including the go-ahead tally late in the third period. Jeff
Skinner had the lone tally for the Hurricanes, while Cam Ward stopped 18-of-20
shots in defeat.
"I thought they really did their part in what we asked from them, come and
work hard, play for each other, we didn't get the bounce, but they played
hard," Muller said.
Muller had been serving as head coach for the Milwaukee Admirals of the
American Hockey League before replacing Maurice, who was in his second stint
as Carolina's bench boss and is the Hurricanes all-time leader in wins.
The Hurricanes have lost three straight on home ice and are staging the middle
test of a three-game homestand tonight. Carolina is 5-7-2 in Raleigh this
The Rangers, meanwhile, have won three straight and 10 of their last 12 games.
The Blueshirts, who are tied with Philadelphia for second place in the
Atlantic Division, posted a 4-3 regulation win over visiting Pittsburgh on
Brad Richards had a goal and two assists as the Rangers held on to beat the
Penguins. It was the seventh straight win on home ice for New York, which is
kicking off a two-game road trip tonight and is 6-4-2 as the guest this year
compared to a 7-1-1 mark in the Big Apple.
Ryan Callahan, John Mitchell and Marian Gaborik also scored for New York and
Henrik Lundqvist made 24 saves.
"Home games should be an advantage and I think we took advantage so far this
year," said Gaborik. "Like I said it's a long year but hopefully we can keep
it up. The fans are behind us which is great and we feel very confident
The Rangers will visit the Tampa Bay Lightning on Saturday before returning to
NYC for a two-game residency.
New York routed the Hurricanes, 5-1, at Madison Square Garden on Nov. 11,
giving the Rangers wins in two straight and three of the last four games in
this series. The Blueshirts have also come out on top in three of their last
four trips to Raleigh.
12/01 10:51:09 ET