Kevin Hayes scores late as New York Rangers beat Winnipeg Jets 2-1 (Highlights)
Dec 8, 2016; Winnipeg, Manitoba, CAN; New York Rangers left wing Chris Kreider (20) celebrates his goal on Winnipeg Jets goalie Michael Hutchinson (34) during the first period at MTS Centre. Mandatory Credit: Bruce Fedyck-USA TODAY Sports

Kevin Hayes buries a power play goal late that propels the New York Rangers to a 2-1 victory over the Jets in Winnipeg on Thursday.

  • New York Rangers 2 (18-9-1, 37 pts)
  • Winnipeg Jets 1 (13-14-3, 29 pts)
  • NHL, Final, Box Score
  • MTS Centre, Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada

If you’re a hockey fan who fancies himself/herself as a goal fanatic, this game was not for you. Both the New York Rangers and Winnipeg Jets showcased splendid defense and responsible play for 60 minutes.

It wasn’t until Kevin Hayes tallied a power-play goal with 1:09 to go in the third period that one team took a serious advantage over the other. Hayes, who found himself in the right place at the right time, buried one off a Ryan McDonagh deflected shot to secure the Rangers 18th win of the season:

Both Rangers goals came via the power-play variety. The first one came in the first period courtesy of a brilliant passing play from Mats Zuccarello to Derek Stepan to, finally, Chris Kreider who netted his seventh of the season:

It was an especially sweet goal considering Brady Skjei was dangerously cross-checked by Mark Scheifele on the play. The ensuing PP resulted in the first tally of the contest.

Antti Raanta received the start in net and flourished to the tune of 17 saves in 18 tries. The idea that the shorthanded Rangers (playing without Rick Nash, Jimmy Vesey, Mika Zibanejad, and Pavel Buchnevich) could come up with a terrific defensive effort like this is one fans can hang their hat on.

Now tied for first in the Metropolitan Division with 39 points (Pittsburgh Penguins), the Rangers will turn around quickly and take on the Blackhawks in Chicago on Friday night.

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