The New York Rangers and Toronto Maple Leafs will both try to bounce back from disappointing losses as the clubs do battle Saturday night at Madison Square Garden.
The Rangers have lost three of four to begin the year and failed to build off their only victory of the season on Thursday as they dropped a 2-1 decision to the previously-winless Philadelphia Flyers.
One night after an overtime win against Boston, Taylor Pyatt netted a third- period power-play goal, his third straight game with a goal, but the Rangers also failed to score during a full two minutes of 5-on-3 action in the middle of the frame.
"Listen we had some good minutes tonight. I thought we were rolling our lines and I thought we were playing really well," said Rangers head coach John Tortorella. "We have just an awful turnover that causes the first goal, and then the whole complexion changes. We had some good minutes tonight but certainly not from everybody and not consistently enough through the 60."
Henrik Lundqvist played well in defeat, making 31 saves, but New York lost for the second time in as many road games this season. The Rangers open a three- game homestand with this matchup, a residency that includes a rematch with the Flyers on Tuesday.
Toronto, meanwhile, has split four games to begin the campaign, winning twice on the road but losing two games at home.
The Maple Leafs notched a big 5-2 win in Pittsburgh on Wednesday, but fell flat at home on Thursday in a 7-4 setback to the New York Islanders.
Carl Gunnarsson, Nazem Kadri and Mikhail Grabovski all scored in the first period as Toronto grabbed an early 3-1 lead, but the Leafs allowed the Islanders to score twice in the second to tie the game and then saw New York score the first three goals of the final period.
"I think we saw one team (Wednesday) night and we saw a total different team tonight. We were out of sync," said Toronto coach Randy Carlyle.
Gunnarsson and Matt Frattin both finished with two assists and Frattin also scored after being recalled from the AHL earlier in the day to replace forward Joffrey Lupul, who is expected to miss at least six weeks of action due to a fractured forearm suffered versus the Penguins.
Ben Scrivens was pulled in the third period after giving up five goals on 25 shots. James Reimer recorded seven saves in relief.
The Rangers have won five of their past seven versus the Maple Leafs, but did lose both meetings at home against them last season.