The Winnipeg Jets (13-11-2) host the New York Rangers (13-10-2) where tonight's winner will have sole possession of the eighth and final playoff spot in the Eastern Conference standings.
Both teams have 28 points, however, the Rangers have played one less game than the Jets. Patrice Cormier
is expected to make his regular season debut tonight after being recalled from the AHL's St. John's IceCaps on Wednesday. Cormier replaces the injured Jim Slater
Based on extra skating at the end of Thursday's morning pre-game skate, Alexander Burmistrov
is expected to be a healthy scratch for the second straight game.
Eddie Pasquale, also up from the IceCaps, will be the backup to starting goaltender Ondrej Pavelec
. Head coach Claude Noel told TSN 1290 that Al Montoya
has a lower-body injury and is listed as day-to-day. Nik Antropov
is on a three-game point streak (one goal and four assists). Evander Kane
has scored in back-to-back games.
Kane led the Jets with two goals and an assist February 26th at Madison Square Gardens for a 4-3 win over the Rangers in their lone meeting so far this season. The two teams play again April 1 in New York.
The Rangers are coming off a 3-1 loss in Buffalo Tuesday. They have just two losses in their last six games. Derek Stepan
has scored in back-to-back games. Henrik Lundqvist
is expected to start in goal. He has played in seven of their last eight games.
Lifetime against Atlanta/Winnipeg, Brad Richards
has 56 points (18 goals and 38 assists) in 51 games, while Marian Gaborik
has 22 points (10 goals and 12 assists) in 18 games.
Mark Staal, Michael Sauer
and Arron Asham
will not play tonight due to injury. Stu Bickel
and Matt Gilroy
are expected to be the healthy scratches.