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NHL Preview from The Sports Network



Friday, March 14th (All times Eastern)

New York Rangers (35-28-4) at Winnipeg Jets (20-28-9), 8 p.m.

(SportsNetwork.com) - The playoff-hopeful Winnipeg Jets desperately need a win to aid their fragile postseason chances and they hope to get that victory on Friday when the struggling New York Rangers visit the MTS Centre.

Paul Maurice's club is in the midst of a five-game slide, and although the Jets have managed to earn three points during the skid they'll need to start rattling off some wins to make the playoffs.

Winnipeg is five points out of a playoff spot in the West with 15 games left on its schedule. The Jets haven't made the postseason since relocating from Atlanta to Winnipeg prior to the 2011-12 campaign. The former Thrashers, meanwhile, only made the playoffs once during 11 frustrating seasons in Atlanta.

The Jets fell to 0-3-2 on their current funk after Wednesday's 3-2 shootout loss against visiting Vancouver. Chris Higgins scored the game winner in the third round of the shootout, as the Canucks halted a seven-game road skid to down Winnipeg in the opener of a three-game homestand.

Winnipeg held leads of 1-0 and 2-1 in the game, but couldn't close out the win in regulation. Then, after the first five shooters came up empty, Higgins charged in down the middle and made a number of quick dekes before stuffing a forehand past Ondrej Pavelec's outstretched right pad for the victory.

Andrew Ladd and Michael Frolik each lit the lamp for Winnipeg, while Pavelec posted 31 saves in the setback.

"It's a loss because of the shootout," Maurice said. "It's a 2-2 game in terms of how it was played and I think that's a pretty accurate assessment of how the game went."

The Jets went 7-2-0 in the first nine games under Maurice, who replaced a fired Claude Noel in January. Winnipeg, however, is just 4-3-4 under Maurice since the coach's early success.

Winnipeg earned a win over the Rangers on Dec. 2, notching a 5-2 road victory at Madison Square Garden. Ex-Ranger Olli Jokinen had two goals and an assist to lead the offense and Pavelec made 35 saves for the win.

The Jets have won three of the last four meetings versus New York, but the Rangers have claimed two of the three encounters at the MTS Centre since the franchise relocated.

New York has lost two straight to begin a three-game road trip and Alain Vigneault's club is just 2-4-1 in March. With 74 points, the Rangers are tied with Columbus for second place in the Metropolitan Division. but they are only one ahead of Philadelphia, which currently holds the last playoff spot in the Eastern Conference.

After losing 3-1 at Carolina on Tuesday, the Blueshirts dropped a 2-1 decision Thursday night at Minnesota. Zach Parise's goal 1:03 into the third period provided the difference in the Wild's 2-1 victory at XCel Energy Center.

Cam Talbot turned aside 24 shots in the loss, with Derek Stepan recording the lone New York goal.

"We're not scoring a lot of goals 5-on-5," said Vigneault. "I thought our effort was better tonight, our execution was a little bit better, but we need to finish more and obviously that wasn't the case tonight."

Martin St. Louis is one of the many Rangers struggling to find the net at the moment. St. Louis has no goals and one assist in five games since coming to New York in the blockbuster trade that sent former Rangers captain Ryan Callahan to Tampa Bay.

St. Louis has excellent career numbers against the Atlanta/Winnipeg franchise, posting 27 goals and 55 assists over 74 career games.

Despite dropping the first two tilts on its current trek, New York still has a solid 19-13-0 road record this season. The Blueshirts will return home to host San Jose on Sunday, but then will head back out on another three-game swing.

03/14 10:58:59 ET

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Scoreboard
Local
Final
ECU 56
TEMPL 70
Final
NCCU 69
NCAT 58
 
7:00pm Tonight
CAR
MIN
 
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CHA
TOR
 
Final
DET 4
ATL 6
 
Final
TAM 2
BAL 3
 
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PIT 1
NYY 2
 
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HOU 6
PHI 3
 
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MIA 1
STL 4
 
Final
SFG 8
CHC 6
 
Final
CIN 3
CLE 9
 
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CWS 1
LOS 6
 
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ANA 3
MIL 2
 
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CHC 2
OAK 2
 
Final
SEA 9
SDP 4
 
Final
KAN 5
TEX 4
 
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ARI 4
COL 3
 
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WAS 5
NYM 4
 
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MIN 9
BOS 8
 
Final
BAL 5
TOR 0
 
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STL
HOU
 
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MIA
 
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MIN
 
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ATL
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BAL
 
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CHC
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Final
CHI 108
OKC 105
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POR 94
DAL 75
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IND
CHI
 
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ORL
SAC
 
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UTA
 
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CLE
 
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NOP
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LAL
 
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DEN
 
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DAL
 
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MDES 89
MRGST 76
 
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SIENA 71
NIAG 54
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LEH 62
AMER 68
 
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SCAR 74
ARK 78
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LAF 89
BU 64
 
Final
PETE 63
FAIR 33
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BUCK 90
HC 83
 
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UNF 71
LIP 57
 
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TENNM 65
MORE 76
Final
COL 72
NAVY 62
 
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ECU 56
TEMPL 70
Final
FATL 62
UAB 59
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FLGC 62
USCU 63
 
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CHAR 84
WKENT 88
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MINN 63
WISC 76
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MIZST 48
SILL 55
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COPST 92
DELST 104
 
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FIU 59
MTST 54
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HAMP 69
NORST 80
 
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NCCU 69
NCAT 58
 
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COOK 72
SCST 62
 
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APP 67
TXST 64
 
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GSOUT 76
TXARL 64
 
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LAMON 50
UGST 58
 
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ODU 67
MARS 50
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TXSA 74
RICE 76
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FAM 64
SAV 57
 
Final
LATU 72
SMISS 61
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JST 72
ALAAM 54
 
Final
GRAM 46
ALAST 78
 
Final
TXSOU 94
ALCOR 73
 
Final
NICST 77
CARK 70
 
Final
TAMCC 85
HOUB 72
 
Final
NARZ 58
PORST 51
 
Final
LAM 61
SHSU 67
 
Final
ARKST 76
SALA 81
 
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PVU 73
SOUTH 77
 
Final
LALAF 75
ARKLR 69
 
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NO 85
SELA 79
 
Final
INCWORD 64
ABCHRIST 52
 
9:00pm Thursday
MVSU 0
ARKPB 0
 
Final
ARZ 99
CAL 60
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WASH 47
COL 64
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WEBER 74
IDAHO 63
 
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UCONN 53
MEM 54
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UTEP 83
UNT 60
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STEPH 92
NWST 66
 
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SUTAH 69
SACST 65
 
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DAVID 82
VCU 55
Final
IDST 81
EWASH 85
 
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QUIN 74
MAR 80
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BEL 97
EILL 64
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DRAK 50
BRAD 52
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LBSU 69
CSNO 58
 
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UCI 68
CSFU 62
 
Final
UCD 61
UCR 59
 
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ARST 67
STAN 62
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WASU 59
UTAH 67
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MVSU
ARKPB
 
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CSOU
LONG
 
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WICHS
SILL
 
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RAD
WINT
 
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ILLST
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HIGH
GWEBB
 
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UNCG
SAMF
 
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ELON
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KSU
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BUF
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WMICH
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TTU
 
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CLST
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LOYC
 
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SCU
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BOS 3
CAL 4
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WAS 1
MIN 2
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PHI 3
STL 1
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FLA 3
DAL 4
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TAM 4
TOR 2
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NAS 3
NYI 4
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ARI 3
VAN 2
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LOS 4
MON 3
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NJD
CLB
 
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CAR
MIN
 
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OTT
BUF
 
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CAL
 
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CHI
EDM
 
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ANA
PIT