Rangers Fall Short in Minnesota
The first 8 minutes of the 1st period seemed like the Rangers were not going to be denied, as their fore-check was creating chances, but like it has been going of late the Rangers failed to score. The failure to capitalize on a few chances would eventually come back to haunt the Rangers at 13:08 of the 1st period, when an errant pass fell right onto the stick of Nino Niederreiter, the former Islander buried his chance and the Wild on the board.
The Rangers would tie the game at 3:19 of the 2nd period on a power play goal scored by Derek Stepan. Unfortunately, that would be the only Ranger to hit the goal column on this night. For most of the time in the 2nd period, the Rangers were mishandling pucks and failed to get through the neutral zone effectively, but still were tied at 1.
The 3rd period started with the Wild picking up their fore-check where they left off, and at 1:03 of the 3rd period, Zach Parise buried a rebound under Cam Talbot to make it 2-1 Wild. The nightmare continues for the defense pairing of Marc Staal and Anton Stralman. With that last goal against, they are a combined -8 in the last 2 games.
The Rangers continued the period as they played for most of the 2nd, mishandling passes and looking awfully sloppy on the fore-check. The Blueshirts would have a power play opportunity with 3:20 left, but only registered 1 shot on that power play. The last minute was spent in the Wild zone with the Rangers getting some chances, including a goal-mouth scramble for the puck with less than 10 seconds to go, but Kuemper stood tall. That was the exclamation point of a tough loss for the Rangers and sums up their last two losses nicely.