by Patrick Hoffman on 12/03/11 at 03:00 PM ET
The New York Rangers will be looking for their fifth straight win when they take on the Tampa Bay Lightning tonight at the St. Pete Times Forum.
It is easy to say that the Blueshirts are clicking on all cylinders right now. They are getting scoring not only from their top players, but depth players as well. The club is also playing solid defensively and getting the goaltending they need to win hockey games.
It has pretty much been this way for the Blueshirts ever since the end of October. After losing two straight to the Toronto Maple Leafs and Ottawa Senators at Madison Square Garden, the Rangers turned everything around and started looking like the club that many pundits and those in the hockey world thought they could be this season.
With all of that said, however, the Rangers cannot afford to take night’s off, no matter how good the club is playing. Tonight is a perfect example as the Lightning are currently 12th in the Eastern Conference with a 11-11-2 record while struggling to play consistent hockey.
However, it is obvious that the Lightning boast an offensively talented lineup. We are talking about guys like Steven Stamkos (16-10-26), Martin St. Louis (7-13-20), Vincent Lecavalier (10-8-18), Marc-Andre Bergeron (3-17-20) and others.
As always, it will be an important game for the Blueshirts to continue to show that they can be a successful hockey club and that they are indeed for real this season.
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Patrick has a tremendous passion for hockey. Besides covering the Rangers and the NHL for Kukla's Korner, you can also find Patrick's work over at Sportsnet.ca, The Red Light District Hockey Blog, NHL Home Ice, and Liam Maguire's Ultimate Hockey web site.
Prior to writing for the above mentioned outlets, you could find Patrick's musings at hockey web sites/outlets such as TheHockeyNews.com, TheFourthPeriod.com, Spector's Hockey, Hokeja Vestnesis, Blueshirt Bulletin, SNYRangersBlog.com and many more.
For questions, comments and hip checks, feel free to e-mail Patrick at firstname.lastname@example.org.