Well, here we are yet again. The New York Rangers found a way to win this afternoon, and they forced a Game 7 back in Washington, D.C. tomorrow evening. Henrik Lundqvist had the goose egg today as he recorded his first shutout of this post season, and practically carried the Rangers the entire game.
The Rangers started out this game this game perfectly, as they got right on an aggressive forecheck, and had the game's first four shots on goal. The Capitals pushed back shortly after, and started to turn the momentum back in their favor. That was until Jack Hillen took a very undisciplined penalty on Ryan Callahan as took exception to a hit by Callahan, and took a retaliatory penalty for roughing.
Although the Rangers 0-for-5 on the afternoon, they did have some pretty good looks and chances throughout. Braden Holtby had a strong game as well on the other end of the ice, as he made a few crucial saves to keep this a one goal game for the Capitals. One of the biggest positives throughout this game was that the Rangers were able to stay out of the box. They didn't give the Capitals a chance with the man-advantage, and kept their red hot powerplay off of the ice.
Finally in the second period, the Rangers were able to break through with the game's first goal. Derick Brassard was the recipient of the goal as he ripped a seeing eye slap shot through a screen in front, which wound up taking a strange bounce off of Steve Oleksy's glove. Rick Nash did a perfect job setting up the screen in front of the net, an it originally looked as if Nash got a piece of the shot on the way through.
But as it stood, Brassard came away with his second goal of the series which brings his total to seven points in six playoff games. He's been a vital part of the offense, and if the Rangers want to take Game 7 tomorrow night, he needs to be in the mix.
While the third period is usually were Rick Nash shines, Henrik Lundqvist took over the reigns of that during this game. There really is no words to describe how Lundqvist makes some of these saves, but he was on full display all throughout the third period today. His highlight of the afternoon came with just a few seconds remaining on the clock as he turned away a pointblank slap shot from John Carlson. Lundqvist just got his blocker hand on the puck, and that save was the game clincher for the Rangers.
So there you have it. The Rangers and Capitals will be back at it tomorrow night at the Verizon Center for Game 7 which is scheduled for 8:00 PM EST. I'll just leave you guys with this...
One Shift. One Game. One Win.