NEW YORK, NY – JANUARY 10: Kevin Shattenkirk #22 of the New York Rangers celebrates with teammates after scoring a goal min the second period against the New York Islanders at Madison Square Garden on January 10, 2019 in New York City. (Photo by Jared Silber/NHLI via Getty Images)

It was an ugly loss for the New York Rangers at Madison Square Garden.  To hold the Islanders to one shot in the third period was special, allowing them to score the winning goal on that one shot was not.

It was a bad night for the Rangers as they dropped a key game to a playoff contender.  The Blueshirts are now 11 points out of a playoff berth, an almost insurmountable hurdle.  But in this bizarre season of dual aspirations, they did pretty well in their race for a top lottery position.

The Lottery Look

There were a couple upsets that helped the Rangers and some predictable results that did nothing.  The upsets meant that there was some shifting in the standings.  The Rangers dropped a slot from 9th worst to 8th.  Los Angeles is back as the worst team in the NHL. Arizona moved from fifth worst to ninth worst just ahead of the Rangers.

In the games that didn’t help the Ranger lottery hopes, the Devils lost to Toronto and Tampa beat the Hurricane.

There were three upsets that help the Rangers immensely.  The Flyers beat the Stars and moved out of last place overall.  The Blues upset Montreal and moved to within a point of the Rangers.  In the last upset, Minnesota beat Winnipeg, opening up a four point advantage over New York.

It took a shootout for the Oilers to beat Florida.  What it means is that Florida is now a point better than the Rangers and Edmonton is four points better.  A good result for the Rangers all around.

Believe it or not, Ottawa has won two games in a row.  With 39 points they have crept within two points of the Rangers.

In the final game that mattered, Arizona and Vancouver went to overtime as requested and the Coyotes won so they are tied with the Rangers in points, but have more ROW.  Vancouver’s point puts them four points ahead of New York.

The standings (worst is first)

Teams                  GP     W-L-OTL     PTS   ROW

1. Los Angeles    45       17-25-3     37      16
2. Philadelphia    43      16-22-6      38      14
3. Ottawa             45      17-23-5      39      17
4.  Detroit              45      16-22-7      39     14
5. New Jersey       43      16-20-7      39     15
6. Chicago             46       16-22-8      40     16
7. St Louis             42       18-20-4      40     18
8. Rangers            43       17-19-7      41     12
9. Arizona             43       19-21-3       41     17
10. Florida             41       17-17-8      42     15
11. Vancouver      46       20-21-5      45     19
12. Edmonton      44       21-20-3      45     19
13.  Carolina          43      20-18-5      45     19
14. Minnesota      42       21-18-3      45     21

Who to root for

Of the four games in the NHL tonight, three are with teams in the draft lottery fight.

Red Wings @  Jets – If Detroit wins, they are tied with the Rangers with 41 points.  The Rangers have two games in hand.  Go Red Wings!

Panthers @ Flames – The Panthers just moved one point better than the  Rangers so an upset win in Calgary would be quite nice.

Sabres @ Hurricane – If Carolina wins, they open a six point gap between them and the Rangers.  Not crucial, but could be important.  Besides, if they beat the Sabres it helps the playoff picture.

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