The New York Rangers and Toronto Maple Leafs laid their respective four game winning streaks on the line.
Both teams played like they didn’t want it to end, and when it was over the score was indicative of that fact. The Leafs held on for dear life late to pick up their 5th straight victory.
Recap: Maple Leafs 2 vs Rangers 1
The Maple Leafs came out fast against the Rangers and had them scrabbling in their own zone to start.
Wayne Simmonds was hard on the forecheck managing to steal the puck behind the net. He came around and got it to Morgan Rielly at the point, who wristed it quickly towards the net. The puck eluded Igor Shesterkin to give the Leafs a 1-0 lead just 3:41 in.
The Rangers did find their game in the second half of the period and came close several times to tying it. In the end, Jack Campbell stopped all 7 shots that made it on net to maintain the one goal advantage.
Rielly would strike again for the Leafs midway through the second period.
With Dryden Hunt off for tripping Jason Spezza, Auston Matthews hit Rielly on the left point. He simply skated it in by himself and deked it around Jacob Trouba’s stick check before sliding it past Shesterkin for a 2-0 lead.
The Blueshirts struggled to generate any offense in the middle stanza and were outshot 12-7.
In the third period, the Rangers gave it a valiant effort.
Dryden Hunt would cut the lead in half with his first goal as a Rangers just 3:30 into the final frame. Cruising in from the blue-line, he converted a Kaapo Kakko shot that Campbell gave a big rebound on. Ryan Strome would also extend his point streak to five games.
“If we played the way we did in the third the whole time we would’ve given ourselves a better chance,” Strome said after the game. “I thought face-offs killed us, myself included [we were] terrible.” Toronto won 80% of all draws in the game.
New York would dictate the play for the majority of the period and nearly tied the game on several occasions late. The biggest opportunity saw Adam Fox taken down with an uncalled hook as he was looking to convert a Panarin feed.
A valiant effort that would just fall short.
“Good hockey game,” head coach Gerard Gallant said. “We played the right way. If we play this way we’re gonna win a lot of hockey games.”
- Igor Shesterkin made some real big saves finishing with 28 saves on 30 shots
- Ryan Strome extends his point streak to five games (1G – 5A)
- Kaapo Kakko extends his point steak to three games (2G – 2A)
Tomorrow (Friday, Nov. 19): No Practice
Next Game: Sunday, Nov. 21 vs. Buffalo Sabres (6:00 PM ET – TV: MSG 2)
*Schedule subject to change
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