Saturday, December 17, 2011

Rangers vs. Coyotes Tonight at 8 p.m.

The Rangers are back in action tonight against the Phoenix Coyotes as their road trip continues, and Mike Rupp is expected to be back in the lineup tonight for the first time since he was sidelined with a torn meniscus in his left knee on Oct. 24. The Rangers haven't officially confirmed that Rupp will dress tonight, but it's fully expected that he will be in the lineup following yesterday's news that the Rangers reassigned defenseman Tim Erixon to the Connecticut Whale, presumably to clear cap space for Rupp's impending activation of injured reserve.

John Tortorella didn't say whether or not there would be any other lineup changes for tonight's game. You would think the logical choice is to put Sean Avery back in the lineup considering how flat the team has looked the last two games and to hopefully provide a spark of energy, but we all know that Torts doesn't always make the most logical choices when they're concerning No. 16. Chances are that Avery will be a healthy scratch once again, and either John Mitchell or Erik Christensen will be joining him in the press box to make room for Rupp's return.

If I had to guess on the lines tonight, I would assume they'll be:


Henrik Lundqvist is also expected to start in goal barring anything unforeseen, as the Rangers will look to snap a two-game losing streak.

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