With two straight wins, the Eastern Conference-leading Rangers look to record a third to close out a seven-game home-stand and complete a series sweep vs. the Sabres Friday at Madison Square Garden.
Doing so would restore a three-point lead in the standings over the idle Penguins, who have won 13 of their last 14 games. With a win over Nashville Thursday to spoil Alexander Radulov's NHL return, the Penguins pulled within one point of the Rangers for the third time this week.
Meanwhile, the Sabres are clinging to their playoff hopes with the 9th spot in the East. Also riding a two-game winning streak, Buffalo enters Friday's match trailing 8th-place Washington by one point. Beginning with tonight's game against the Rangers, the Sabres will play three of their next four against playoff opponents.
Following Friday's contest, the Rangers embark on a three-game road trip that features stops in Toronto, Minnesota and Winnipeg before returning home on March 30 against Montreal.