At a glance: The Rangers host the lowly Buffalo Sabres for a night of Halloween hockey at Madison Square Garden on Thursday, as the Blueshirts try to secure the first win of the season in their revamped digs. Coming off a win over the Islanders on Tuesday night, the Rangers’ offense found some life thanks to the return of Carl Hagelin and the confident play of Chris Kreider. The Sabres have dropped two straight, though new acquisition Matt Moulson is working out just fine. After joining the team in a stunning trade Sunday night, the former Islander notched two goals in his Sabres debut Monday night.
Back in goal: Henrik Lundqvist is back in nets after backing up Cam Talbot in Tuesday’s win. Rangers coach Alain Vigneault said the decision to give Talbot that start was probably "10 to 15 percent" because Lundqvist was coming back from injury, but the former Vezina Trophy winner should get back on a roll with the bulk of the starts from here on out. Ryan Miller will get the start for Buffalo.
Beleaguered in Buffalo: Lundqvist will face a Sabres squad that is struggling mightily on offense. The last-place Sabres are managing a measly 1.57 goals per game, but get this: The only team with a worse goal differential than their unsightly -18 is the Rangers (-19).
On the mend: The Rangers are still nursing some key injuries, namely those to Ryan Callahan (hand) and Rick Nash (concussion). But while Nash has been nowhere to be found -- obviously not a good sign in his recovery -- Callahan skated with the team for the first time since breaking his left thumb earlier this month. The 28-year-old Rangers captain, who also missed time this season with a shoulder injury, is expected to return in a week to 10 days, according to Vigneault. Dominic Moore, who suffered an oblique strain in Tuesday’s win, is also expected to miss seven to 10 days.