(SportsNetwork.com) - The New York Rangers open a four-game road trip hoping to avoid a third loss in a row on Tuesday night as they visit the Toronto Maple Leafs.
The Rangers lost back-to-back games over the weekend, falling to the Nashville Predators on Saturday prior to a 3-2 setback in overtime to the Dallas Stars the following day.
Cam Talbot was in net for both losses as Henrik Lundqvist is expected to miss at least three weeks due to a vascular injury. He was nearly bailed out versus the Stars as Chris Kreider scored a game-tying goal with 1:20 left in regulation, but Talbot could not stop a screened shot from Dallas' Ales Hemsky that went over his shoulder.
"I didn't see it go in," Talbot said of the deciding goal. "I looked around and saw the release, but after that I lost it."
Talbot ended with 23 saves and Carl Hagelin also scored for the Rangers, who remained a point behind the Washington Capitals for third place in the Metropolitan Division. Mats Zuccarello ran his point streak to five straight games, with a goal and five helpers over the run.
Talbot is 2-1-0 with a 2.02 goals against average and .926 save percentage in four games (3 starts) lifetime versus the Maple Leafs, who snapped the longest losing streak in club history with Saturday's 5-1 decision over the Edmonton Oilers.
Toronto got a goal from five different players and 32 saves by James Reimer in snapping an 11-game losing streak. The Maple Leafs won for the first time since a 5-2 decision over Columbus on Jan. 9 and hadn't scored more than three goals in a game since before Saturday's win.
Richard Panik, Phil Kessel, Morgan Rielly, Mike Santorelli and Peter Holland all scored to snap the 0-10-1 drought.
"Some of those games we felt like we should have won and we did it to ourselves," said interim Maple Leafs coach Peter Horachek. "So it was a really great feeling to see all four lines contribute.
Leafs captain Dion Phaneuf missed his sixth straight game with a hand injury and Reimer got a second straight start due to Jonathan Bernier being out with an illness. Reimer is expected to start again tonight, with Bernier serving as the backup.
Reimer is 2-1-1 with a 3.08 GAA and .912 save percentage in five career meetings with the Rangers, all but one of those starts.
Though the Leafs have won three in a row overall in this series, the Rangers have claimed a victory in five of their past seven trips to Toronto.