The New York Rangers extended their winning streak to three
games as they defeated the Montreal Canadiens 5-3 Saturday night.
New York jumped out a 3-0 lead, but Montreal
pulled to within one on two different occasions before Ryan Callahan sealed the
win with an empty netter.
The goal came
only 1:11 after Brian Gionta scored to cut the lead to 4-3.
Things got interesting early when Mike Blunden hopped off
the Canadiens benched and flattened Brandon Dubinsky in the neutral zone.
The hit itself was a textbook example of how
to lay someone out in open ice, but Ryan Callahan took exception to the hit and
immediately went after Blunden.
fought and while they were fighting Michael Sauer Canadiens forward Petteri
Nokelainen also squared off and were given game misconducts.
The Rangers came out big winners in terms of
the penalties as Callahan got away without receiving an instigator while
clearly initiated the fight against Blunden while Blunden got an undeserved
When the penalties were finished being doled out the Rangers
ended up with a 5-on-3 advantage.
Rangers cashed in the two-man advantage when Derek Stepan fired a beautiful
cross ice pass to Erik Christensen for a tap-in goal.
Just after the second penalty expired the
Rangers would make it 2-0 when Artem Ansiimov played an excellent drop pass to
a pinching Dan Girardi who beat Carey Price over the shoulder with his
The Rangers extended the lead to three with another
tremendous passing play as Anisimov dropped the puck to Stepan who found
Michael Del Zotto streaking down left wing and Del Zotto danced around a
defender before slipping the shot five-hole on Price.
It was the capper to a dominant opening
period that had the Rangers looking like a runaway winner.
Never that easy with New York as they played a lousy second
period that opened with <span style="mso-fareast-font-family: "Times New Roman";">Max
Pacioretty’ scoring just 24 second in after a bad rebound by Henrik
The lead shrunk to just one
when Andrei Kostitsyn scored while Montreal
had a two-man advantage.
<span style="mso-fareast-font-family: "Times New Roman";">The
Canadiens nearly tied it as Erik Cole beat Lundqvist with a shot, but it hit
the far post.
The Rangers took full
advantage of the break as Andre Deveaux won a battle along the boards, Brandon
Prust got the puck to Brad Richards and Richards extended the lead by using
Yannick Weber as a screen with only 1:10 left in the second.
- <span style="mso-fareast-font-family: "Times New Roman";">Del
Zotto stepped up in this game not only with the goal but logging 27:26 of ice
time with Sauer getting ejected so early.
Yes, 11:10 of that was on the power play, but big confidence boost for
him getting that much ice time.
- <span style="mso-fareast-font-family: "Times New Roman";">Anisimov
and Stepan were phenomenal tonight with vision and passing that created all
three first period goals.
- Power play going 1-for-9 is certainly not helpful
- Fedotenko, Boyle, Prust might not have been on the score sheet but best game in terms of forechecking they have had this year.