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Preview: Devils (35-29) at Rangers (45-31)
BT Movements  ·  Line Movements
Date: April 27, 2013 3:00 PM EDT
  

The New York Rangers eliminated the New Jersey Devils from playoff contention in their last meeting nearly a week ago. While the Devils can't exact that kind of revenge Saturday, they do have the chance to play a role in whether the Rangers get a more favorable first-round matchup.

A game after clinching a playoff spot with a late comeback, plenty will still be unsettled for the Rangers when they take on the Devils at Madison Square Garden in their season finale.

New York (25-18-4) guaranteed its up-and-down season would extend past this weekend with a 4-3 overtime victory over Carolina on Thursday. The Rangers blew a 2-0 lead and trailed before Brad Richards scored with 2:57 left in regulation on a shot that hit the boards behind the net and went in off goaltender Dan Ellis.

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Captain Ryan Callahan then scored on New York's only shot of OT, settling off a celebration of his team's third straight playoff berth.

" ... now we're in the playoffs and that's all that matters," Callahan said. "It's a new season now. We take these last two weeks where we've been playing good hockey into the playoffs, and we'll be a dangerous team."

Due to the tightly bunched postseason picture, the Rangers might not have any idea of where they'll finish or who they'll play until the end of the weekend, as they could end up anywhere from sixth through eighth.

The only thing the Rangers can control is the result of their finale, and it might benefit them significantly to not let up. An eighth-place finish means a first-round matchup with high-powered Pittsburgh, which won the season series 4-1-0.

Though numerous scenarios abound, New York can guarantee avoiding the Penguins with a point against the Devils.

For that reason, Henrik Lundqvist could make his 14th straight start rather than getting a game off before the postseason.

"We have one more game and it can still change a lot of things here going into the playoffs, so let's focus on that game," said a smiling Lundqvist, 9-3-1 with a 1.89 goals-against average in the past 13. "I still think it's an important game for us and then we're gonna start thinking about what's ahead, but Saturday first."

Despite their poor season, the Devils may be motivated to defeat the Rangers after last Sunday, when a 4-1 loss to New York knocked the defending Eastern Conference champions from contention. New Jersey (19-18-10) has also been playing well, winning four of five.

The Devils beat Pittsburgh 3-2 on Thursday in their home finale, and they'll now try to avoid a third consecutive loss to the Rangers.

"It's too bad (Saturday's) game is not going to mean anything," said forward Ilya Kovalchuk, who has points in his last four overall and one goal and four assists in his past five versus New York. "It would have been more fun if the game meant something, but I think it's great for the league that (the Rangers) are in because they are a franchise with a lot of history.

"They have good players and deserve to be in. We're just going in there to try our best to win the last game."

One negative that came out of Thursday's game for New York was an apparent leg injury to forward Ryane Clowe, who had to be helped off the ice and did not return. His status is uncertain.

AP NEWS
The Associated Press News Service

Copyright 2014
The Associated Press
All Rights Reserved

 CURRENT LAS VEGAS LINE
 Team  ML   PUC   O/U 
 NJD  +155      5 
 NYR  -175      
LAS VEGAS LINE MOVEMENTS

 CURRENT SPORTSBOOK LINE
 Team  ML   PUC   O/U 
 NJD  +160      5 
 NYR  -180      
OFFSHORE LINE MOVEMENTS

 BETTING TRENDS
 Team  ML   PUC   O/U 
 NJD  20%   10%   39% 
 NYR  80%   90%   61% 
BT MOVEMENTS

 NHL HEAD TO HEAD
 Apr 21, 2013  Score  ATS Results 
 NJD 1 Push: 5 
 NYR 4 Cover: 203 
 Tools:   Boxscores    Recaps
 Mar 19, 2013  Score  ATS Results 
 NYR 3 Push: 5 
 NJD 2 Cover: 299 
 Tools:   Boxscores    Recaps
 Feb 5, 2013  Score  ATS Results 
 NYR 1 Cover: 328 
 NJD 3 Under: 4 
 Tools:   Boxscores    Recaps

 NHL PREVIEWS
 Saturday, Apr 27
 
    Devils at Rangers
3:05 PM EDT
    Panthers at Lightning
7:05 PM EDT
    Bruins at Capitals
7:05 PM EDT
    Flyers at Senators
7:05 PM EDT
    Red Wings at Stars
7:05 PM EDT
    Canadiens at Maple Leafs
7:05 PM EDT
    Predators at Blue Jackets
7:05 PM EDT
    Hurricanes at Penguins
7:35 PM EDT
    Wild at Avalanche
7:35 PM EDT
    Blackhawks at Blues
8:05 PM EDT
    Coyotes at Ducks
10:05 PM EDT
    Canucks at Oilers
10:05 PM EDT
    Sharks at Kings
10:35 PM EDT
 
 
 
  
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