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Monday, March 15th (All times eastern)

New Jersey Devils (36-22-11-2) at New York Rangers (25-34-7-6), 7 p.m.

(Sports Network) - The New Jersey Devils, losers in two of their last three games, try to do their part in the battle for positioning in the Eastern Conference tonight when they visit the rival New York Rangers at Madison Square Garden.

Jersey enters the evening with 85 points, which places it in a sixth-place tie with Montreal in the East -- three behind fifth-place Toronto. The Devils, who have suffered each of their last two losses to Philadelphia, trail the Flyers by nine points in the Atlantic Division race.

On Saturday the Devs dropped a 2-1 decision in Philly. Marcus Ragnarsson scored the only goal of the third period to lift the Flyers.

Scott Gomez found the back of the net for the Devils, who have just three wins in their last nine games (3-5-0-1). Martin Brodeur made 19 saves, but was outplayed by counterpart Robert Esche, who stopped 37 shots.

On the injury front, mammoth center Viktor Kozlov, who was obtained from Florida earlier this month, could make his debut with the team having recovered from a concussion. Kozlov suffered the injury with the Panthers on Valentine's Day.

The Devils, who have lost four of their last six road games, will host Pittsburgh on Wednesday.

New York, meanwhile, is on its way to a seventh straight spring out of the postseason, but will try to play spoiler on its rival. The depleted Rangers, who traded most of their high-priced talent before the trade deadline, have lost two straight, including Saturday's 3-2 overtime defeat at Florida.

Sandy McCarthy and rookie Fedor Tyutin tallied for the Rangers, who have lost three of their last four (1-2-0-1). Making his Rangers debut, goaltender Jamie McLennan turned aside 29 shots in a losing effort. McLennan was obtained from Calgary in the deal that send Chris Simon to the Flames on March 6.

The Rangers, who have lost four of their last five at MSG, will visit Washington on Thursday to kick off a three-game road trip.

New Jersey is 2-1-1 against New York this season, and 7-1-5 in the last 13 meetings overall. The Devils are 3-0-3 in their last six trips to the Garden.

03/15 10:14:29 ET


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