New York Rangers
(Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)

Henrik Lundqvist and the New York Rangers snap their two-game losing streak with a 4-2 triumph over the Ottawa Senators at MSG.

  • New York Rangers 4 (13-10-2, 28 pts)
  • Ottawa Senators 2 (9-12-3, 21 pts)
  • NHL, East, Final, Box Score
  • Madison Square Garden, New York, NY

After a two-game losing streak, the New York Rangers found themselves back in the win column after a hard-fought 4-2 win against the Ottawa Senators.

With the help of a 29 save performance by Henrik Lundqvist and goals from Marc Staal, Lias Andersson, Chris Kreider, and Mika Zibanejad, the Blueshirts earned a victory against a struggling Sens team that is looking to fight their way back up the standings.

This game was fast paced and full of opportunities for both teams.

The first period, while low scoring, saw plenty of chances on both sides as the Rangers and Senators both put up 13 shots. The first great chance for either team came just three minutes in when Sens forward Mikkel Boedker had a point-blank chance all alone in front of Lundqvist, but the veteran goalie had an answer with the left pad, keeping the game scoreless.

The Rangers almost had their own great chance on the penalty kill, but Vladislav Namestnikov sent the pass just out of reach for a breaking Zibanejad, failing to connect on a potential breakaway.

But the Rangers were the first team to score when Staal scored his first of the season on the feed from Zibanejad at 10:55 into the first. The following faceoff, the Rangers had a chance to immediately make it a two-goal deficit on a two-man breakaway, but Jimmy Vesey couldn’t bury the pass from Brett Howden past Craig Anderson.

The Senators would make the Rangers pay for not capitalizing on that opportunity after Mark Stone buried a rebound past Lundqvist to tie the game at one. Sens forward Colin White made contact with Lundqvist during the goal, prompting coach David Quinn to challenge for goalie interference, but officials determined that there was not enough evidence to overturn the goal, so the call on the ice stood.

A few minutes later, Lundqvist had a scare when his helmet broke. The goalie took off his helmet when a strap broke on a Matt Duchene shot, but the official did not blow the play dead until the Senators got a shot off. Replay showed the shot heading towards Lundqvist’s head but was deflected low saving the goalie from an injury. Lundqvist lost his helmet again when Senators rookie Drake Batherson made contact with him in the crease with under two minutes left in the period.

The Blueshirts had one last opportunity to get their lead back with around three and a half minutes left in the period. They got the shot past Anderson but defenseman Dylan DeMelo was there to clear the puck out of the crease and preserve the tie for the second period.

Both teams continued their opportunities in the second, but the first notable thing to happen came a minute and a half in when Vesey was high-sticked by defenseman Cody Ceci and officials missed the call. The high stick drew blood on Vesey, so if the call was made it would have been a potential four-minute power play for the Rangers. Vesey would return despite his injury.

Just like the first period, the Senators had the first great scoring opportunity, this time it was White on a breakaway. Once again, Lundqvist stood tall as he stopped the backhand shot. The puck bounced off of Lundqvist into the post, but Kevin Shattenkirk was there to clear the puck out of harm’s way.

The Rangers had their own point-blank opportunity when Filip Chytil passed the puck to Kreider in-front, but Anderson was ready for the test as he stopped the shot with the pad. The Rangers came close again shortly after when Zibanejad hit the post with the shot. The Sens would also get a shot off the post at the hands of Tom Pyatt.

With under three minutes left the Rangers had one last chance to take a lead into the third period on a power play.  Kreider hit Howden on a backhand pass to the near circle, but the shot hit the post and the Blueshirts and Sens went into the third tied.  Both teams not only remained tied in the goal column, but they also remained tied in the shot column with 22.

The Rangers broke through about three and a half minutes in when Andersson deflected a Ryan Strome pass into the net to make it 2-1 Rangers. With Andersson making contact with the goalie Anderson, Senators coach Guy Boucher challenged for goalie interference, but like the previous challenge by the Rangers, this one was upheld. The goal from Andersson was his first of the year and second of his career.

Now all the Rangers had to do was get insurance — they did.  Chytil and Kreider took advantage of an aggressive Ceci to go on a two-on-one, Kreider buried the feed from Chytil, just getting it under Anderson’s glove to make it 3-1 Rangers.  Kreider leads the Rangers in goals with 13.

Then after frustrations boiled over in a skirmish involving Namestnikov and Brady Tkachuk, the Senators made a push for a comeback that included a Ceci shot off the post and Lundqvist stoning Ryan Dzingel on a one-timer down low.  However, the Sens would break through when they pulled the goalie when Stone scored his second of the game from the far circle to make it 3-2 with under three minutes left.

Ottawa gave the Rangers a scare, but Zibanejad would put the nail in the coffin with an empty netter after intercepting a Thomas Chabot pass. However, just before the goal, Namestnikov was on the receiving end of a Chabot hit and needed assistance back to the bench. Namestnikov went to the locker room before the clock hit zero.

The Rangers won the game 4-2. This win is the Blueshirts eighth win at Madison Square Garden in nine games and it also snaps the Rangers losing streak at two games. The Rangers now sit third in the Metropolitan division at 13-10-2 and 28 points.

Tonight’s win for the Rangers was just one of two games in four days against the Senators this week. New York will be off until Thursday when they face off against Ottawa again this time, in Ottawa.

WPU Graduate. Die-hard Ranger fan. Pain loving Jet fan. Loves to make comic, movie and TV references. Born and raised in Central Jersey. Twitter @JohnnyLonny82 Instagram @JackKnife82