WASHINGTON, DC - MAY 02: Ryan Callahan #24 celebrates with Marian Gaborik #10 and Michael Del Zotto #4 of the New York Rangers after scoring a goal against the Washington Capitals in Game Three of the Eastern Conference Semifinals during the 2012 NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs at the Verizon Center on May 2, 2012 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Patrick McDermott/Getty Images)
Marian.Freaking.Gaborik ladies and gentlemen. The Rangers were able to come away with a huge 2-1, heart stopping, triple overtime game, to take a 2-1 series lead. The Rangers battled all night long, but you have to give credit to the Capitals for one heck of a game tonight.
The game started off with a fairly even pace, with both teams getting their respective scoring chances. However, both teams would head into the locker room with a 0-0 deadlock. Just six minutes in the second period, Ryan Callahan gave the Rangers the early 1-0 with a power play goal. Del Zotto showed great patience to walk in, and rip a low, hard slapper. The puck rebounded and Callahan picked it up in the crease, and slammed it home.
The lead would only last about give minutes, as John Carlson would tie up the game at 1-1. Carlson carried the puck low into the slot, as Marc Staal poked the puck off of his stick. The puck bounced off of Carlson's leg, fell right back on his stick, and he ripped it over the glove of Henrik Lundqvist.
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The third period would come to close, and for the 19th time during the 2012 playoffs, we headed to overtime. About half way through the first overtime, the Rangers were thanking the hockey gods, after Alex Ovechkin nailed the post with a wrist shot. Anton Stralman made a terrible pass which Ovechkin intercepted right in front of Lundqvist. The first two periods would go without a winner, as both teams had numerous chances during the game. Finally, at the 14:41 mark of the third overtime, Marian Gaborik was able to slip the puck under the pad of Braden Holtby, and give the Rangers a huge game three victory.
Props to Brad Richards who made an excellent pass out from behind the net to set up the winner from Gaborik. Henrik Lundqvist was also solid tonight, as he made a few jaw-dropping saves tonight, between the pipes. The Rangers now have momentum heading into game four on Saturday, as well as some much needed rest after tonight. Game five will be a 12:30 PM start, as the Rangers look to widen the gap.