Kevin Hayes
ESNY Graphic, Getty Images

It was an up and down return to the ice for the New York Rangers but, they manage to hold on to break their three-game losing streak. 

Dom Renna

  • New York Rangers: 5 (14-12-3, 31 points)
  • Florida Panthers: 4 (11-11-6, 28 points)
  • NYR Goals: Mika Zibanejad (8), Vladislav Namestnikov (3), Matt Beleskey (1), Fredrik Claesson (2)
  • FLA Goals: Keith Yandle (5), Jonathan Huberdeau (8), Aaron Ekblad (7), Aleksander Barkov (11)
  • NHL. Final (SO). Boxscore.
  • BB&T Center, Sunrise, Florida.

Following five days off in between games, the New York Rangers returned to the ice with a 5-4 shootout win over the Florida Panthers.

With the victory, the Blueshirts have swept the season series against Florida after they won the first two games in New York earlier this season.

It was not all pretty for New York who came out buzzing. They outshot Florida 12-7 and took a 2-0 lead after a period, but Florida would end up outshooting the Blueshirts 24-14 the rest of the way.

Despite seeing the negative side on the shot clock, New York managed to stay in it and would end up scoring three goals in the shootout to hold on for the important win.

They would have the lead three separate times but, Florida would come back each time to make this one interesting. Former Ranger Keith Yandle along with his teammate Jonathan Huberdeau was on a mission scoring a combined six points but, it wasn’t enough.

Here are the highlights:

It all started with the Rangers taking advantage of poor coverage in front of Florida’s net and Mika Zibanejad giving them the early 1-0 lead.

Later in the period while shorthanded, Kevin Hayes would use the body and get great position to help set up Vladislav Namestnikov for the short-handed goal and, a 2-0 Blueshirt lead.

Florida would collect two goals in the first five minutes of the second period to tie this one up but, only until Brady Skjei got a shot through and a deflection from Matt Beleskey for Beleskey’s first goal as a Rangers and a 3-2 lead.

But once again, Florida would tie it and the Rangers would answer taking a 4-3 lead into the second half of the third period, and again, Florida would tie it up and send this one to overtime.

As the extra period was just about to expire, Namestnikov took the puck hard to the net and thought he scored the game-winning goal. It would be waved off after a video review showed Namestnikov hitting the puck past Roberto Luongo with his glove.

For the second consecutive game, this one went to the shootout where Zibanejad and Kevin Shattenkirk would give the Blueshirts a 2-1 shootout lead. That all set-up Hayes for the game-winner and the Blueshirts breaking their three-game losing streak.

New York will have the day off to celebrate the win Sunday. They return to the ice Monday when they face former Rangers Ryan McDonagh, J.T. Miller, Ryan Callahan, Dan Girardi, Anton Stralman, and the rest of the Tampa Bay Lightning in Tampa.

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Dominick is a graduate of Canisius College. He has covered the Rangers for the last seven seasons and the Yankees for the last four.