New York Rangers-2 Toronto Maple Leafs-3
Everyone had an extra pep in their step tonight as the Rangers took the ice. Martin St. Louis got a huge roaring welcome from the crowd on his first shift. Brian Boyle looked like a man on a mission. He came out shooting and hitting and doing more of it! The instant chemistry of the Carl Hagelin-Brad Richards-St. Louis was exactly what anyone could ask for and more. Not only the chemistry but also the entertainment value. Passes were crisp, timing was perfect, and the placement of the puck was just amazing. Marc Staal was on his game with strong presence on the puck and Anton Stralman made some really strong checks. Henrik Lundqvist came up with some really huge saves on his end as well. Both teams were playing very physical games with big hits. The period ended with the Rangers on the power play and out shooting the Leafs, 12-11.
The Rangers started the period with 1:21 in power play time carry over from the goal tender interference penalty on James van Riemsdyk. The power play expired with no goal. A mere 23 seconds after the penalty expired, John Moore gets called for shooking and gives up a penalty shot to Tyler Bozak; who scored. Chris Kreider rang a shot off Jonathan Bernier‘s ankle, he needed a few moments to deal with the sting. Joffrey Lupul got away with a major trip and Dion Phaneuf did exactly what you’d expect; he whined and cried, and tried to pick a fight. At 12:29 Jake Gardiner rang a knuckle puck off two posts that went under review because the referee on ice called it a goal. Nope. The Leafs continued their pitiful attempts to starts a fight. Even Daniel Carcillo wouldn’t be pawed at. A very questionable hit on Ryan McDonagh sent him awkwardly into the boards knee and face first; no call. The teams continued to fight but Lundqvist stole the show in the last two minutes with HUGE saves! The teams went into the dressing rooms with the Rangers leading in shots 9-5.
The pace continued as the teams hit the ice but The Leafs would have none of that. In a scramble, Nazim Kadri beat Lundqvist on the backside of the goal at 2:00. After a scramble again, Brad Richards went down and tripped up Kadri as everyone rolled their eyes and groaned about the upcoming penalty kill. All of the sudden magic happened. Boyle was hard on the puck and ended up getting an assist on McDonagh’s team leading second short-handed goal of the season. Then Dominic Moore turned around and netted a second short hand goal off a break away. The goals clocked in at 5:34 and 6:53 in the period. The pace continued as it was the whole game until Chris Kreider made his third period clutch move and went to the box for hooking at the 12:47 mark. Just after the penalty expired, Carl Hagelin had a great opportunity on a break away but Phaneuf tipped his stick. Both players went hard to the boards and Phaneuf limped off the ice. Derek Dorsett did not leave the bench for the third period, maybe he was hurting or maybe he was replaced. Dom Moore got some great work in on Phaneuf as he dropped him to ice level. At 19:03 Brassard and Nikolai Kulemin were sent to the box for slashing. The period ended with the Rangers out shooting the Leafs 13-10. On to overtime.
The extra session started with both teams down a player from the previous penalties. It took the Leafs 1:51 to get a shot over Lundqvist’s shoulder. Three shots for each team in the extra period.
2- Dom Moore
1- Tyler Bozak
Rick Nash- Uhm, can you score a goal? How about you start by hitting the net?
Derek Stepan- can you win a face-off?
Chris Kreider- late penalty in the game, again?!
The Rangers take the ice again on Friday 7 March at 7:00pm in North Carolina against the Hurricanes.