Islanders vs. Rangers preview: Atlantic Division showdown in New York

Al Bello

The New York Rangers will host the New York Islanders at Madison Square Garden for the second time in one week. The Rangers won the first meeting by a score of 4-1.

The New York Rangers (7-5-0) will host the New York Islanders (4-7-1) at Madison Square Garden on Thursday night.

It will mark the second of four meetings between the two teams this season.

The Rangers managed to defeat the Islanders, 4-1, when the two clubs played last week at Madison Square Garden. John Tavares scored the Islanders' lone goal, while J.T. Miller (2), Marian Gaborik and Ryan McDonagh combined for the Rangers' four.

Henrik Lundqvist stopped all but one of the 28 shots he faced, while Evgeni Nabokov allowed three goals on 24 shots.

Heading into Thursday night, the Rangers are riding a three-game winning streak. Following a rocky start to the 2013 season, the club has turned things around in the second month of the year by registering four victories in their last five games.

The Islanders will look to end a five-game losing streak, which has seen the club drop every game they've played in February. Over the course of the losing streak, the team has allowed the opposition to score at least three goals in each game and has been outscored by a combined margin of 20-9.

Tavares (seven goals and eight assists for 15 points) and Matt Moulson (six goals and seven assists for 13 points) will enter the night as the Islanders' highest scorers. Rick Nash (three goals and seven assists for 10 points), Brad Richards (two goals and seven assists for nine points) and Gaborik (six goals and three assists for nine points) are currently the Rangers' highest scorers.

Thursday night's game is scheduled to begin at 7 p.m., ET and will be televised on MSG and MSG PLUS.

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