Jonathan Quick ends Rangers skid, beats old team 4-1

NHL: Los Angeles Kings at New York Rangers
Danny Wild-USA TODAY Sports

On Sunday night at Madison Square Garden, the New York Rangers defeated the Los Angeles Kings, 4-1, to snap a mini two-game losing streak.

Facing off against his former team for the first time in his illustrious career, the night belonged to Jonathan Quick, as he delivered an exceptional performance, securing his 8th win of the season. Quick’s experience and skill were on full display as he successfully turned away 25 shots by the Kings, showcasing the agility and sharp reflexes that have defined his career. This victory not only highlighted Quick’s consistent excellence in goal but also maintained his impressive record of not having lost a game in regulation this season.

“Obviously it’s special,” Quick said about beating his former team. “The way we played defensively was tremendous. You could see their effort and attention to detail. The team’s performance was phenomenal.”

Phoenix Copley got the starting nod for the Kings. The 31-year-old made 23 saves on the night, as LA lost for the first time on the road in regulation this season.

Related: Quick set to face former team

New York Rangers 4 Los Angeles Kings 1

NHL: Los Angeles Kings at New York Rangers
Danny Wild-USA TODAY Sports

In the first period, the two teams exhibited tight defensive play resulting in a scoreless frame. The Kings were more aggressive in their offensive efforts, outshooting the Rangers 9-4. Despite their attempts, neither team was able to capitalize on their opportunities to score. The period was also marked by penalties on both sides. Artemi Panarin and Trevor Moore each served two-minute penalties for high sticking.

To begin the middle period, LA successfully killed off the Rangers’ power play that carried over from the first. However, momentum shifted when Drew Doughty took a slashing penalty. The Blueshirts seized their opportunity as Mika Zibanejad scored on the ensuing power play.

Zibanejad’s goal, his 7th of the season, was facilitated by some beautiful passing between Vincent Trocheck and Panarin, putting the Rangers ahead 1-0.

Later in the period, the Rangers extended their lead to 2-0. Jimmy Vesey scored his 6th goal of the season, thanks to a remarkable play by Nick Bonino to keep the puck in the offensive zone.

Defensively, the Rangers were exceptionally strong, limiting the Kings to only two shots in the period. New York’s strong defensive performance, combined with their effective offensive execution helped them hold that 2-0 lead heading into the intermission.

The third period was marked by increased physicality and a flurry of penalties, leading to several pivotal moments.

Initially, Jordan Spence of the Kings appeared to score on the power play, but the goal was disallowed due to an interference penalty on Pierre-Luc Dubois. In the same sequence, Ryan Lindgren of the Rangers was called for embellishment, adding to the game’s intensity. Trocheck then took an interference penalty, putting the Kings back on the power play. This time, the Kings capitalized on their advantage with Phillip Danault scoring a goal, narrowing the Rangers’ lead to 2-1.

The game’s physical nature continued as Adrian Kempe of the Kings received a double minor penalty, giving the Rangers a significant power play opportunity. Jonny Brodzinski, filling in for Mika Zibanejad on the Rangers’ first power play unit (Zibanejad was serving a 10-minute penalty), seized this chance by scoring his first goal of the season, extending the Rangers’ lead to 3-1.

“I thought we had a really good bounce back game against a really good team,” Trocheck noted. ““This is one that we really wanted to have for [Quick].”

With 4:36 left in the game, the Rangers further solidified their lead. Will Cuylle scored his 5th goal of his rookie season, benefiting from another outstanding assist by Trocheck, who had a remarkable night with three assists. Cuylle’s goal brought the score to 4-1, which would be good enough for New York to win their 19th game of the season.

I thought it was exactly what we needed to do,” coach Peter Laviolette stated. “For me it was a really good game from start to finish.”

The Rangers will be back in action on Tuesday night, as they welcome Auston Matthews and the Toronto Maple Leafs to MSG.

Rangers Notes

The Blueshirts will host the Toronto Maple Leafs o Tuesday with a 7:00 p.m. ET puck drop.