After 17-game absence, Nash returns to Rangers lineup tonight

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Rick Nash is back.

That was the word out of New York on Tuesday as the Rangers announced that Nash, out for the past 17 contests with a concussion, would be in the lineup for tonight’s tilt against the Bruins at MSG.

Concussed in the Rangers’ third game of the season on a high hit from Sharks defenseman Brad Stuart, Nash has been sidelined as his team has performed a dramatic in-season turnaround.

The Rangers were 3-7-0 following a 2-0 loss to Montreal on Oct. 28 and appeared in disarray. Since then, though, the club has gone 7-3-0… but has struggled finding the back of the net.

New York has just three goals in its last three games and was shut out 1-0 by Los Angeles on Sunday. This is where Nash’s presence will give the Rangers perhaps the biggest boost — last year, he led the team in goals (21) and has scored 30-plus seven times.

As for storylines for tonight, it’s definitely worth noting Nash will be taking on the same Bruins team that concussed him last season. Boston’s Milan Lucic hit Nash during a game last February, one that forced the Rangers star to miss four games.

There’s also the Michael Del Zotto healthy scratch watch. According to the New York Daily News, he’s going to be held out of the lineup for the third straight game.

Related: NHL on NBCSN: Will Rangers’ Nash return to face Boston?