Rangers Vs. Hurricanes: Rangers Top Line Dominates Hurricanes

Mar 13 2012; New York, NY, USA; New York Rangers center Brad Richards (19) and teammates celebrate scoring during the second period against the Carolina Hurricanes at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Anthony Gruppuso-US PRESSWIRE

The New York Rangers completed the season sweep of the Carolina Hurricanes, with a 4-2 win over the Carolina Hurricanes. Their top line of Carl Hagelin, Brad Richards, and Marian Gaborik combined for all four goals in tonight's game. Brad Richards came away with two more goals, while Gaborik and Hagelin added a goal and two assists.

Marian Gaborik started things off tonight by being in the right place at the right time. Dan Girardi's point shot banked off of the back boards, which landed right on Gaborik stick in front of the net. Cam Ward made a diving attempt, but Gaborik flipped it over him to make it 1-0 Rangers.

After remaining scoreless for the remainder of the first period, Brad Richards struck for the first time tonight. Carl Hagelin made a great play to get the puck out front to Richards, who snapped it over the shoulder of Cam Ward. That wouldn't be the end of Hagelin and Richards as they connected later in the game as well.

Follow after the jump for more.

Just three minutes later, it was Hagelin and Richards again to make it 3-0 Rangers. Carl Hagelin made an unbelievable no-look pass from behind the net to find Brad Richards wide open. Richards waited out Cam Ward and fired off of the crossbar and in.

However, in a two minute time span following the Richards goal, the Hurricanes were able to strike twice. Tim Brent scored first as he chipped the puck passed Martin Biron on the power play. Then it was Drayson Bowman who scored on the odd-man rush to cut the Rangers lead to just a single goal.

With just under seven minutes to go in the game, Carl Hagelin made a slick move out from behind the net, and slipped it on Ward on the wraparound. That would make it 4-2 Rangers as they held on to the lead for the remainder of the game.

But wow, was the Rangers top lethal tonight, as they combined for all four goals tonight. Hagelin's passing has improved drastically since his call-up earlier in the season. He is also learning to combine his speed along with his hands to make the big plays, and you saw just that tonight.

Brad Richards is certainly proving the haters wrong as he now has four goals in the last two games. Marian Gaborik is also producing in bunches after falling into a slight slump earlier in February. Marty Biron also played a solid game tonight after being named the starter late this afternoon, as Henrik Lundqvist was sidelined with the flu.

The Rangers deserved this win, and they are now 2-for-2 in their seven game home stand. The Pittsburgh Penguins will be in town on Thursday evening where Sidney Crosby will make his return.

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