One of the Many Metropolitan Rivalries Renewed
New York, NY -Yes it is a preseason game, but hockey fans still get excited when they hear that the New Jersey Devils are taking on the New York Rangers. These two metropolitan giants have created a unique rivalry.
For the Rangers they are a team with a lot of history and not many Stanley Cup Championships while New Jersey has hoisted the holy grail on many occasions. The two teams will meet again for the first time in the 2010 season in a home-and-home games on Thursday at Madison Square Garden and again on Saturday at the Prudential Center.
To get ready for the big game the Rangers had another full squad scrimmage in which the White Team lead by Henrik Lundqvist to a 6-1 victory over the Blue Team. There are many rookies that head coach John Tortorella will watch including 20-year-old Derek Stephan and former Buffalo Sabres Tim Kennedy who will be in the lineup. Both have impressed Tortorella with their play thus far.
Three defensemen to watch for will be rookie Ryan McDonagh, 2005 second-round draft choice Mike Sauer and Alexei Semenov, who is trying out with the team. All three players will be in the lineup for the preseason game against the Devils on Thursday.
Highlights offensively were goals from Ryan Callahan who scored twice for the White Team in the first period. Kris Newbury and Artem Anisimov netted the other two goals for the squad to help lead them to the victory.
One thing to watch for is an injury to defensemen Steve Eminger who sat out with a sore groin. That injury allowed for 2010 first-round draft pick Dylan Mcllrath to step in and play. According to the Rangers website Mcllrath played a solid game and made a highlight-reel play.
Meanwhile if you are a fan of the New Jersey Devils you will finally get to see the top line of Zach Parise, Travis Zajac and Illya Kovalchuk the trio will hit the ice for the first time. Also expected to play is goalkeeper Martin Brodeur who likes what he sees from the young Devils in camp so far. According to the Devils website players like Jacob Josefson, Mattias Tedenby and Alexander Urbom are all going to be a part of a bright future for the Devils.
So yes it is a preseason game, but it is still a rivalry…it may not be an Original Six rivalry but it is one stemmed in two teams wanting to be the best. For these two teams tomorrow will only be the start to building a successful 2010 season.