Rangers Recall: A guarantee and called shot to blow away Hurricanes

NHL: Stanley Cup Playoffs-New York Rangers at Carolina Hurricanes
James Guillory-USA TODAY Sports

In the aftermath of Superstorm Kreider, the Carolina Hurricanes and their fans at PNC Arena were left devastated on Thursday night. Seemingly, with the match firmly in their hands up by two goals, and just 13:17 away from roaring all the way back down 3-0 in this series to force a Game 7, it all blew away.

From the moment Chris Kreider snuck a loose puck between the skate and glove of Frederik Andersen, the atmosphere in Raleigh, North Carolina changed. As the air pressure dropped, a sea of Rangers churned shift after shift.

When Carolina’s Game 5 hero, Jordan Staal, crosschecked Mika Zibanejad into the boards it caused a static charge in the ominous clouds looming over PNC Arena. New York’s power play, which hadn’t scored since Game 2, was the lightning strike needed as Kreider beautifully tipped an Artemi Panarin point shot to tie the game.

Soon afterwards, the longest tenured member of the Rangers would plant himself atop the crease to convert a great centering feed by Ryan Lindgren. The thunder of Kreider’s celebration could be heard from Raleigh to Broadway.

A natural hat trick in Game 6.

If that sounds familiar, it’s because Mark Messier did exactly the same thing in the third period of Game 6 against the New Jersey Devils in 1994. A game in which he guaranteed a victory, and then backed it up with his actions. The Rangers would go on to win the Eastern Conference Final in Game 7 and the Stanley Cup against the Vancouver Canucks.

Carolina tried to fight against the Blueshirts’ surge, but Barclay Goodrow put home an empty-net goal to complete a 5-3 comeback making the Rangers once again, the first team to advance to the next round.

Related: Rangers end Hurricanes thanks to Chris Kreider

Rangers Recall: Kreider and the Captain

NHL: Stanley Cup Playoffs-New York Rangers at Carolina Hurricanes
Credit: James Guillory-USA TODAY Sports

Chris Kreider called shot

As incredible as Kreider’s performance was on its own merits, the fact that just prior to the final frame he called getting a goal, makes it the stuff of legend.

“Before the third period, [Kreider] said ‘I know I’m going to get one here,’ and he goes out and gets three,” Goodrow revealed. “He’s clutch and comes up big every time.”

When Kreider was asked by NHL reporter Dan Rosen about calling his shot, he humbly played it coy to deflect attention from himself as usual.

“I just think as a group we raised our level,” the 33-year-old veteran stated. “We started getting pucks to the net, and I just tried to get there.”

That’s when Vincent Trocheck, who was at the podium with Kreider, immediately interjected.

“I think he did. I think he did,” Trocheck laughed in the affirmative. “He did say he has one.”

Finally, the room erupted with more laughter to a follow up question asking Trocheck his reaction after hearing Kreider’s called shot.

“I said, ‘I sure hope so.'”

Captain’s Guarantee

While it was not the bold headline in the back of the NY Post that read: WE’LL WIN TONIGHT, captain Jacob Trouba made a low-key guarantee of his own on Wednesday. Speaking to none other than the former Rangers’ legendary captain after winning the Mark Messier NHL Leadership Award, the 30-year-old defenseman uttered some confident words.

“Looking forward to going into Carolina and getting a win in Carolina,” Trouba stated. “I think that’s the belief our group has in each other and moving forward I think we’re looking forward to the challenge and are excited to get to Carolina.”

When asked about what was said before the third period, the man who was credited with five hits and six blocks downplayed the locker room speech.

“No one was in here freaking out or yelling,” he said. “We just go out and play 20 minutes with how we play. We get one in the first 10 minutes, and we thought we could get a second one. We got three, so that helped.”

However, in a NSFW video captured by The Athletic’s Peter Baugh, an emotional Trouba comes off the ice screaming, “Never a f**king doubt!”

A pretty good indication that the Rangers’ room was pretty charged up before the third period. Whatever was said in there, or how it was delivered, the message was heard loud and clear.

Anthony Scultore is the founder of Forever Blueshirts and has been covering the New York Rangers and the NHL... More about Anthony Scultore

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