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Saturday, April 7, 2012
Potential first-round preview in season finale

By Katie Strang

The Rangers enter Saturday's season finale against the Capitals gunning for the Presidents' Trophy in what could very well be a preview of their first-round playoff matchup.

Should the Blueshirts beat Washington to finish first in the league standings, they'll solidify the Capitals as their opponents. And although the Panthers are considered to be the shakiest team in the East heading into the post-season, the Capitals could also be a pretty favorable draw for the Rangers.

While New York boasts one of the league's elite in netminder Henrik Lundqvist, Washington is battling a precarious goaltending situation. With injuries to Tomas Vokoun and Michal Neuvirth, the Capitals have recalled Dany Sabourin from Hershey of the American Hockey League.

Depending on how Saturday shakes out, the Rangers could also face the Panthers or the Senators in the first round. The only matchup set is the enticing 4-5 battle between the Penguins and Flyers.

Plenty of intrigue on the last day of regular-season play. More from the Garden later...