Mar 8, 2015; Chicago, IL, USA; Chicago Blackhawks left wing Teuvo Teravainen (86) skates against New York Rangers right wing Mats Zuccarello (36) during the first period at the United Center. Mandatory Credit: Dennis Wierzbicki-USA TODAY Sports
Tonight will be the second and final meeting of the regular season between the Chicago Blackhawks and the New York Rangers. The Rangers won 1-0 in OT back on March 8 in a hard fought goalie showdown. Both teams are currently on the surge with the Chicago Blackhawks winning 6 of their last 8 while the New York Rangers are on a 5 game win streak. Jonathan Toews stepped his game up the other night against the Islanders and several other players have found their groove again. If the Chicago Blackhawks want to snap the Rangers streak and add to theirs they will have to focus on the fundamentals. Below are Chicago Blackhawks 3 keys to victory against New York Rangers.
The Chicago Blackhawks have out battled their opponents during their current wave of success in the face off dot which has resulted in increased puck possession and opportunities. Puck possession is vital to the success of any team but even more so for the Blackhawks, a team that has been playing without their best of the puck possession trade. We have seen the increased roll of Brandon Saad and Teuvo Teravainen without Patrick Kane but it has been a combined team effort which strengthened this team. If everyone can continue to chip in and contribute the Blackhawks have a good shot at a photo finish at the end of the season for the division seeding.
The reemergence of the Chicago Blackhawks power play unit that went lifeless in February has helped the team in so many ways. They have been able to play with the lead more often instead of trying to battle out of a hole. A strong special teams can be the difference maker in the playoffs so they are coming to life at the right time. The Blackhawks players also need to stay disciplined in their play so they do not give opponents free opportunities with the man advantage.
Corey Crawford has really shined in his last stretch of starts winning 6 of 7 games. He has held several playoff contenders to only a handful of goals during this stretch and looks to be in his best form of the season. Crawford will need to stand tall against one of the leagues best. He has the confidence of his coach and team on his shoulders and he knows he will be counted on if the Chicago Blackhawks want to make it far this post season. I don’t see this being a high scoring affair based on their last meeting together that ended with 1 total goal scored and Crawfords current comfort behind the net.
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