The Rangers look to bounce back after getting shut out by the Islanders once again.
On Monday, the New York Rangers were shut out by the New York Islanders, once again. They’d look to bounce back and prevent themselves from starting another losing streak against the red-hot Boston Bruins.
Alexandar Georgiev led the way in net on this big day. He’d be starting his first game since being involved in a scuffle with Tony DeAngelo, who is no longer on the team, and on his 25th birthday, too.
1st period: Félicitations, Julien!
Getting off to a hot start was key for the Rangers in this game, and that’s what they did. To begin with, their defense was solid.
This blueline wasn’t letting many of Boston’s shots get through, and the Bruins finished the period with six shots on goal. Several of these shots came during a late Bruins power play.
Mika Zibanejad continues to show improved play, but he was a little too unselfish in the first. During one specific instance, he received a great pass from Adam Fox, but instead of taking the shot, he passed it to Pavel Buchnevich.
It wasn’t necessarily a bad play, it just showed that Zibanejad is lacking in confidence. Last season, that likely would’ve been a goal on a Zibanejad slap shot.
New York’s big moment of the period came off the stick of Julien Gauthier. Gauthier, who was the Rangers’ best player on the ice in Monday’s loss to the New York Islanders, has finally been rewarded for his solid play.
He positioned himself well in front of Boston’s net and knocked the the puck in top shelf to put the Rangers up 1-0. Gauthier’s first goal was a long time coming, and the Rangers will hope this gives him some scoring momentum.
Kaapo Kakko led all Rangers forwards in ice time and looked encouraging in the first. He was the Rangers’ best player this period.
2nd period: Come on, Bread
The Bruins came out angry and were much more aggressive and high-energy in the second. This paid off. The Rangers were given their first chance on the power play, and that ended up being a disaster.
Other than the players no being able to do anything, Artemi Panarin committed an awful play to give the puck away, and Georgiev made a bad attempt at a save on the breakaway that allowed the Bruins to tie the game.
3rd period: So many close calls
There were some scary scenes early in the period when Panarin was hurt and subsequently remained on the bench, coming back out for just one power play.
Some sloppy play by Jacob Trouba allowed the Bruins to tie the game up with a soft goal that Georgiev also probably should’ve had.
A Bruins goal that bounced off the top post was overturned, coming to the relief of Rangers fans.
Later in the period, Kevin Rooney scored a goal that looked like it might be overturned because of a Brendan Lemieux high stick, but the call went the Rangers’ way. Rooney and Lemieux continue to look excellent.
Tuukka Rask bailed the Bruins out on multiple occasions this game, but the fact that the Rangers were able to at least get one point against such a dangerous team is an accomplishment.
Overtime: Heartbreak city part infinity
Facing a power play unit comprised of Patrice Bergeron, Brad Marchand, and Charlie McAvoy is absolutely never ideal, and we saw why within the first 30 seconds of overtime.
Fox did make a phenomenal sliding play behind Georgiev to save a goal that led to a two-on-one chance for the Rangers, but Buchnevich made the mistake of passing the puck to Fox instead of shooting.
The puck was intercepted and Marchand was able to score a breakaway game-winner. The Rangers goaltenders have struggled mightily on the breakaway and must work on that part of their game.
Key Moment: Big moment for the big boy
The key moment of the game was Gauthier’s goal. It was his first career goal, one that he greatly deserved, but it also gave the Rangers momentum to build on. It kept them in the game and proved to be crucial.
Player of the game: Brendan Lemieux
Lemieux has been playing excellent hockey lately, and he was rewarded with two assists on the night. He was the best player on the ice: 0.92 iXG, 0.33 xGF, 0.14 xGA, 0.94 GF, 0 GA, 0.53 defensive score, 0.34 offensive score, and 2.01 individual score.
The fourth line was the team’s best line this game and has been one of the best, as of late. Lemieux’s excellent play is a reason why.
Stats are courtesy of https://hockeystatcards.com/.