New York Rangers follow season long recipe for success in 3-2 win over Penguins
The New York Rangers rematch with the Pittsburgh Penguins had plenty of significance. A regulation win would give the Blueshirts sole possession of second place in the Metro, but it would also make a statement for a potential playoff matchup.
Following a recipe that we’ve seen all season, Igor Shesterkin made the big stops, Artemi Panarin set up a beautiful goals, and Chris Kreider scored on the power play. With the victory, the Rangers have 91 points and it’s the first time they passed the 90-point plateau since 2016-17.
Recap: Rangers 3 vs Penguins 2
Chris Kreider’s power-play goal early in the third period Tuesday held up as the deciding marker for the visiting New York Rangers in a 3-2 win over the Pittsburgh Penguins.
The game was a rematch of Friday’s 5-1 Rangers win in New York, and the win allowed the Rangers to leapfrog Pittsburgh into second place in the Metropolitan Division.
Kreider also had an assist. Frank Vatrano and Braden Schneider also scored, and Artemi Panarin added two assists for the Rangers, who have won three straight and five of six.
New York goaltender Igor Shesterkin made 22 saves.
Brian Boyle and Sidney Crosby scored for the Penguins, who are 1-2-1 in their past four. Pittsburgh goaltender Tristan Jarry made 23 saves.
Rangers newcomers keep getting it done
The Penguins got the only goal of the first period. At 14:24, Brian Dumoulin took a shot from the left point. Boyle, with his back to the net, got his stick on the puck to deflect it downward and under Shesterkin’s pads for a 1-0 lead.
“We played a good first 20. We were getting pucks deep, we were getting shots and good chances,” Braden Schneider said on MSG. “If we keep doing what we’re doing, we’re going to get our shot to score here.”
New York countered with two goals in the second.
Vatrano notched his fifth goal in as many games at 13:32 to tie it. Dumoulin, from deep in his end, flipped the puck high over the net. The Rangers’ Mika Zibanejad deftly settled it in the right circle and, in one motion, backhanded it over to Vatrano. From the right hash marks, Vatrano swept it past Jarry’s glove.
At 17:04, Schneider made it 2-1 with his second NHL goal. Panarin, from the right circle, passed to Schneider in the high slot for a one-timer over Jarry’s blocker. It was the rookie’s first goal since his debut on January 13 against the San Jose Sharks.
Chris Kreider does it again
On a power play at 1:06 of the third, Kreider pushed New York’s lead to 3-1. Panarin, at the center point, blasted the puck off the end boards. Kreider was near the left post to get to the bounce off the boards and knock it in.
Crosby closed it to 3-2 with a power-play goal at 10:37 of the third, on a slap shot from the left point that went far side with Jake Guentzel setting a screen. That gave Crosby 70 points for the 12th time in his career.
The Rangers responded to that goal by not sitting on their heels and continuing to press the attack.
In the end, the Penguins spent most of the final two minutes trying to prevent the Blueshirts from scoring on the empty net.
Eventually, the Penguins tried one last salvo but were thwarted by staunch defense and great goaltending.
“I thought tonight was the best we moved the puck out of our zone all year,” Gerard Gallant said on the MSG postgame. “I loved the way we played in the first period, so don’t change a thing.”
- Igor Shesterkin made 22 saves on 24 shots
- Frank Vatrano now has 5 goals in 7 games with the Rangers
- Andrew Copp has scored in every game as a Ranger (4 GP, 1G – 5A)
- Chris Kreider recorded his 45 goal and 23 PPG of the season
Tomorrow (Wednesday, March 30): Gerard Gallant Availability at Little Caesars Arena (5:30 p.m.)
Next Game: Wednesday, March 30 at Detroit Red Wings (7:30 PM ET – TV: TNT)
*Schedule subject to change
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–Field Level Media contributed to this report