Igor Shesterkin and Artemi Panarin lift Rangers over Sabres
Igor Shesterkin saved the New York Rangers in Buffalo as his solid goaltending late in Montreal carried over for full game against the Sabres.
The New York Rangers showed some improvement in their 2-1 overtime victory on Saturday, but still gave up too many high-grade scoring chances for the head coach’s liking.
“We got through it and [Shesterkin] was the key,” Gerard Gallant said on the postgame. “Late in a period of a 1-1 hockey game to give those chances is not acceptable for our group. A lot of guys in the locker room should be thankful Igor made those saves for them.”
Igor Shesterkin and Artemi Panarin save Rangers
It wasn’t pretty, even if the Rangers looked better defensively on the rush. However, the Sabres still got a number of excellent scoring chances right in Shesterkin’s house that he was able to thwart.
Before the game was over, he stopped 32 shots en route to being named the first star of the game.
The Rangers registered their 19th comeback win of the season and they can thank Patrick Kane in part for making that happen.
A little over the midway mark of the contest, Kane’s centering pass into traffic deflected by Ukko-Pekka Luukkonen to knot things up at 1 apiece. K’Andre Miller and Jacob Trouba registered the helpers on the tally.
New York’s special teams would play a huge role in the match as they came up with a huge penalty kill late in the third period to get it to OT.
That’s where a Rasmus Dahlin hooking call on Mika Zibanejad would set up the thrilling finish.
On the power play, Zibanejad set up Adam Fox for a one-timer that was blocked and landed right on Artemi Panarin’s blade. The Breadman would not make a mistake and buried it top shelf over a sprawled out Luukkonen for the winner.
The Blueshirts were perfect on the PK (2-2) and went 1-3 on the man-advantage.
“When Igor’s on his game, we’re a hard time to beat,” Fox explained. “We competed from the start…We battled for those two points at the end.”
The Rangers now head to Pittsburgh to take on the Penguins looking to extend their current two-game winning streak.