The New York Islanders take on their cross-town rival, the New York Rangers, tonight at the Nassau Coliseum. It is the first of five meetings between the two teams, and it is the only time they will play one another on Long Island.
The Islanders went 1-1-2 against the Blue Shirts last season and are 106-113-25 all-time against the Rangers. In their final matchup last season, the Islanders lost 1-0 in overtime on April 13.
Nabokov will make his 10th start in net this season tonight and Brock Nelson will return to the lineup in the place of Eric Boulton. Thomas Vanek will make his Islander debut tonight as well. He will appear on the wing with John Tavares and Kyle Okposo.
A side note, both Tavares and Okposo are carrying points streaks into tonight’s game with the Rangers. Tavares has a 10-game points streak going, while Okposo has a five game streak going.
The Rangers come into tonight’s contest off a shutout loss last night to the Montreal Canadiens. The Blue Shirts are 1-2-0 this season in back to back games and they will not have the services of Rick Nash or Ryan Callahan, due to injury. They are expected to get Carl Hagelin back into the lineup, however nothing is official yet.
The Islanders will likely face Cam Talbot in net.
The Islanders and Rangers face-off tonight at 7 p.m.