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1495 Sports preview of Game Two of the Eastern Conference finals

Henrik Lundqvist (seen during 2012 NHL Winter Classic) and the New York Rangers are ready for Game Two of the Eastern Conference Finals versus the New Jersey Devils. Photo by: Stacy Podelski

The New York Rangers will look to continue their red-hot play at Madison Square Garden with an 8:00 p.m. face-off against the New Jersey Devils. The Blueshirts hold a 116-86-2 overall record at home in the playoffs.

New York has opened six of their last nine playoff series with a win in Game One, as the Rangers’ 3-0 victory over the Devils on Monday was the 12th shutout by the team in series open games all-time. The Rangers are 8-3 in playoff series when posting a shutout in Game One.

Key to the Rangers success has been keeper Henrik Lundqvist, who continues to climb the team’s all-time playoffs leaders list in several goaltending categories. ‘Hank’ recorded a 21-save shutout in Game One, moving into a tie with Ed Giacomin and Jon Ross Roach for third in franchise history with five career playoff shutouts.

Lundqvist also passed Dave Kerr for second on the Rangers’ all-time total shutouts list with 48 in his career (43 regular season, five playoff).  The Swedish-keeper has recorded 30 or more saves in the playoffs 14 times, posting a 7-7 record with a 1.69 GAA, .948 Sv% and two shutouts in those contest.

Leading the charge offensively was rookie Chris Kreider and blueliner Dan Girardi, as both had a goal and an assist in the third period. Kreider has been able to etch his name in Blueshirts folklore in these playoff games.

Girardi continues to lead the Blueshirts, tallying five points (one goal, four assists) in the last six games. The blueliner leads the NHL in blocked shots (52) and ranks second among league defensemen and 10th overall in hits (43).

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