Rangers-Brad Richards: After missing two games following the vicious he hit he took last Sunday from Buffalo's Patrick Kaleta, Richards returned to the Rangers lineup on Friday and played a very strong game against Ottawa at The Garden. Richards scored his first goal in 16 games, snapping out of the longest goal drought of his career, and tied for the game high with six shots on goal. Though he had not skated in four days, Richards fell right into place with linemates Rick Nash and Carl Hagelin, playing 18 minutes and finishing a +2. Richards' game had picked up even before he was hurt against the Sabres, and his modest three points in the last four games might just be a sign that his game is coming around. Today's contest---plus four in a row on the road---will put that theory to the test, for sure.
Capitals-Alex Ovechkin: The Rangers always need to be aware of Ovechkin whenever they face the Caps, but the superstar will be even more keyed up for today's game for a couple of reasons. First off, Ovechkin is coming off a rough game in Washington's 5-2 loss to the Islanders on Saturday, being held off the scoresheet and finishing a -2 on the afternoon. Secondly, apart from Saturday's contest, Ovechkin has been playing some of his best hockey of the season as of late. Ovechkin had ten points in the six games prior to Saturday, including a three-goal, four-point outburst February 23rd against the Devils, and a three-point outing Thursday night against the Panthers. He ranks second in the NHL with 97 shots on goal, and Ovechkin now has nine goal and 20 points in 23 games this season.