Artemi Panarin powers Rangers to sixth straight win; down Blackhawks 3-2
The New York Rangers faced the Chicago Blackhawks for the first of two against them. It was also their second game of a back-to-back and when the final horn sounded, the result was the same.
Artemi Panarin powered the Blueshirts over the team he broke into the NHL with and gave fans a three point performance.
Recap: Rangers 3 vs Blackhawks 2
The first period was a fairly defensive affair as both sides were physical and took the body. Scoring chances were few and far between as they often ended being broken up. It took a little controversy to break the ice when Patrick Kane scored with just 23 seconds left. Brandon Hagel would knock down a rebound in the air which threw Alexandar Georgiev off allowing Kane an easy tap in.
Head coach Gerard Gallant challenged for a high-stick. There was some confusion on the rule because Hagel’s stick was clearly above the crossbar but that was irrelevant since he didn’t score. On a pass, the stick simply must be below the player’s shoulders. The failed challenge gave Chicago a PP heading into the second which the Rangers killed.
Before the game, Artemi Panarin played puck toss with his good friend and former linemate Kane. Likely not wanting to be shown up by his buddy on home ice, Panarin put on a show the rest of the way.
With Henrik Borgstrom in the box for hi-sticking at 4:41, Panarin fed a cross ice feed to Ryan Strome to knot the game at one apiece. Taking a pass from Adam Fox, the Breadman moved to the net, dipped his shoulder before dishing it for a basic empty net goal.
“I can judge by his answers how he’s feeling, even if he won’t admit it,” Strome said of his chemistry with Panarin. “He had it going against his former team.”
Panarin caps a great game
Panarin kept up his maestro like performance going with 2:35 remaining. Getting the puck from Strome this time, he weaved his way down the middle and put a shot on net that Fox cleaned up the rebound for a 2-1 lead heading into the final frame.
Georgiev faced 9 shots in the second and stopped all of them, including one diving across the crease that went off his helmet.
“It felt great to be back in the action,” Georgiev said of his 25 save effort. “I want to play, and work hard. When I get my chance, have my team win.”
In the third period, Panarin would score the eventual game-winner off a wild sequence. This time, it was Strome making the beautiful pass that his winger would bury for his 499th career point.
“He’s making the plays when we need it,” Gerard Gallant said of Panarin’s play during this streak.
The game shouldn’t have been a nail-biter in the final minute, but another controversial goal was granted to the Blackhawks. Despite the puck being under Georgiev’s pad and the whistle being blown as he was pushed into the net, the goal was allowed to stand.
Of course, the Rangers weren’t phased and closed out the final 1:19 for their sixth straight win and 10th in their last 11 games.
“We try and play the same way, we don’t change,” Gallant said afterwards. “We don’t want to play the last six minutes backing off. We want to forecheck and that’s how you win hockey games.”
- Alexandar Georgiev made 25 stops and looked solid
- Panarin picked up 1G – 2 A, he has 499 career points
- Ryan Strome had 1G – 2 A, now has consecutive games with PP goals
- Adam Fox notched 1G – 1A, he has 25 points and leads all NHL defenseman in scoring
Tomorrow (Sunday, December 5): Day Off
Next Game: Tuesday, December 7 at Chicago Blackhawks (8:30 p.m. ET – TV: MSG 2)
*Schedule subject to change
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