Game Preview: Jets at Rangers

The Winnipeg Jets of the Southeast Division...

The Winnipeg Jets of the Southeast Division…

Tonight the Rangers face off against the Winnipeg Jets, a team that is also struggling to find some consistency in this lockout shortened season. Aside from their records, the comparisons pretty much end there between these two teams. The Jets just play a different brand of hockey.

Claude Noel has the Jets playing a passive 1-2-2 forecheck. Their game plan is to sick back in the neutral zone and score off of transition rushes. This really isn’t a team that is going to press the issue with an aggressive forecheck and heavy hitting below the goal line like the Blueshirts. In a sense, the Jets are similar to the Canadiens, but they are not nearly as good at executing their system.

Winnipeg plays a low zone collapse in their own end zone, but they tend to over commit on the puck carrier and often get burned in the process. If there was ever a game for the Rangers to get their offense going, this would be it. The Jets team defense is shoddy and their goaltending is mediocre.

The same can also be said for Winnipeg’s penalty kill. They typically don’t challenge the points at all and are very passive. The Rangers can hopefully exploit this and get some rubber on net from their high zone players. Though if I were Noel, I’d alter that approach.

Although the Jets share an umbrella powerplay strategy with the Rangers, Noel stations his defensemen much higher in the zone, where Torts allows his guys to creep in an extra 5-10 feet. It is not uncommon to see Winnipeg pointmen blast shots from barely over the blueline.

It’s an interesting strategy, as there tends to be a considerable gap between Enstrom/Byfuglien and their slot players. Hopefully the Rangers can capitalize.

2012-2013 Records: Jets (8-9-1), Rangers (8-7-2)

NYR Leading Scorer: Rick Nash (3-9-12)
Jets Leading Scorer: Andrew Ladd (10-7-17)

NYR Goaltender: Henrik Lundqvist (14 GP, 2.28 GAA, .918 SV%)
Jets Goaltender: Ondrej Pavelec (16 GP, 2.98 GAA, .898 SV%)

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Rangers Lines (unconfirmed): 

Carl Hagelin-Brad Richards-Marian Gaborik
Taylor Pyatt-Derek Stepan-Ryan Callahan
Darroll Powe-Brian Boyle-J.T. Miller
Chris Kreider-Jeff Halpern-Brandon Mashinter

Marc Staal-Steve Eminger
Anton Stralman-Dan Girardi
Stu Bickel-Matt Gilroy

Henrik Lundqvist

Scratches/Injuries:  Mike Sauer (concussion), Rick Nash (undisclosed), Ryan McDonagh (undisclosed), Arron Asham (back spasms), Michael Del Zotto (lower body)

Opposition Blog: Winnipeg White Out

Broadcast Info: 7:00 pm, MSG

Torts Post Practice Interview from Monday:

Theme here is about confidence. Torts says the team needs to play the right way and gain some confidence in themselves. Most importantly, he talks about how he himself has full confidence in the toughness of the team, which was nice to hear since every other angry tweener with a keyboard seems to think otherwise.

17 Responses to “Game Preview: Jets at Rangers”

  1. kymichael says:

    Gilroy’s double-shifting? That can’t be good.

    If McDonagh and Del Zotto are both out, then who’s the last defenseman? Eminger? That would leave us with pretty questionable team defense, too.

  2. Dave says:

    Gotta admit, having all three of Bickel, Eminger, and Gilroy in the lineup scares me a lot.

  3. Tim B says:

    Hey Dave, according to NHL.com. This is what they say about MDZ in te Jets Rangers Preview.:
    “Defenseman Michael Del Zotto (lower body) missed the Montreal game but should be back to face the Jets.”
    It look like uour defensive pairings are wrong in which i hope they are. I woul not want to see Bickel and Eminer together. It’ll probably be
    Staal-Girardi
    MDZ-Stralman
    Eminger-Gilroy.

  4. TxRanger says:

    stralman double shifting?

  5. Sally says:

    Callahan is the man!

  6. Bloomer says:

    The Rangers are looking a little exposed on the backline. Are they getting any support on the back check? I missed the first 2 periods.

    • Dave says:

      They have Bickel, Gilroy, and Eminger playing tonight. What do you expect?

      • Tim B says:

        Gilroy isnt that bad. Plus he is the only one out of the three who an score. I really didnt see the point of resigning Bickel. He should be in the minors. There are tons of defensemen who are free agents. They dont have to be that good but at least sign someone who knows what he is doing and knows how to skate

  7. TxRanger says:

    really thought we’d beat these fools. somethings got to give.