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Series with Canes is critical

John Tortorella firmly believes every team experiences highs and lows over the course of a season.

John Tortorella firmly believes every team experiences highs and lows over the course of a season.

While his team has not encountered an extended losing streak during their surprising 2010-11 season, Tortorella’s team may be at a crossroads. Following a 1-1-1 road trip, the Rangers are seventh in the East with 47 points entering tonight’s game against Carolina at the Garden. The Canes sit just four points out of the last playoff spot in the East, and their four-game set with the Rangers this season could decide who’s in and who’s out come April.

The Blueshirts scored three goals in an Oct. 29 loss to Carolina, but scored only four goals on their recent three-game road trip.

“We’re concerned about [scoring],” said Brandon Dubinsky, who leads the team with 16 goals 32 points. “Past years we’ve talked about the lack of scoring and it just becomes contagious. We’ve got guys who are capable of scoring.”

Seemingly everyone is capable of scoring on Carolina’s Cam Ward as of late. The netminder has allowed at least three goals in five of his last six games.

Tonight could be the perfect matchup for the struggling Marian Gaborik, who has 14 points (seven goals, seven assists) in 14 career games against the Hurricanes.

 
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