Perseverance Nets New York Rangers the Win: 2/25 Recap

Fast shows why he’s valuable to NYR (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)

It wasn’t the prettiest game, but the Rangers managed to pull off a “W” in New Jersey this evening.

Strong Showing in First Period 

During the first period, there was a lot to be happy about as a Rangers fan. The play was kept tight, mostly, and the Blueshirts ended up scoring two goals for a 2-0 lead at the end of the first. While they didn’t dominate the puck, they controlled it enough that they were in the offensive zone longer and capitalized on two scoring chances.

Dan Girardi helped open up the scoring with a slapshot that was deflected in past Schneider by Chris Kreider.

Several minutes later, a quickie pass to Lindberg gave us this beautiful gem:

When It All Comes Tumbling Down

Second period play was quite a bit sloppier with turnovers in the defensive zone that could’ve been costly had Antti Raanta not been on his game. Blueshirts didn’t manage to score any in the second period, and to be quite honest, we’re just lucky the Devils only managed to score one, otherwise we’d be discussing an entirely different outcome.

Kevin Hayes had a good opportunity on Taylor Hall’s turnover, but Schneider was with him the whole way. Mats Zuccarello continued to prove his worth in more than goals with his ability to race back and make a good stick save.

This isn’t a new thing, unfortunately. The Rangers have been experts at falling apart in the second and seemingly forgetting how to play good hockey. Henrique’s goal in the second made the game 2-1 with a very upset Raanta in net.

How Does this Keep Happening?

As bad as the second was, the third period is where it all fell apart. Two goals in the span of 47 seconds, one thanks to Kreider’s delay of game penalty, put the Devils in the lead for the first time.

The play continued to be sloppy throughout most of the third, but they did tighten it up toward the last five or so minutes, which was critical for the Rangers as they needed to tie it up in order to get at least one point by heading into OT. With 4:25 to go, Clendening whipped one past Schneider and tied it up.

Overtime Joy

For the third straight game, the Rangers have dazzled fans by going into overtime, though tonight’s winning goal was scored during 3-on-3 play instead of a shootout. The feeling in the room quickly went from panic to elation as Raanta made a big save on Kyle Palmieri’s breakaway which, in turn, led to Mika Zibanejad’s game-winning goal with a nice pass from Brady Skjei.

Zibanejad is to thank for the shootout win on Thursday night, then you have the winning goal tonight:

No wonder he ended up with the Broadway Hat. Fully deserving, too. Here’s hoping he keeps it up and gets his mojo back!

Christina is an avid hockey fan and a great writer.

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