After Saturday afternoon's collapse against the Washington Capitals, the New York Rangers responded this evening with a huge 2-1 victory over the Boston Bruins. Jesper Fast's late goal at the 18:18 mark of the third period was the deciding factor, and gave the Rangers a much needed victory. Aside from a whiff on the Bruins only goal, Henrik Lundqvist returned to form during the second half of the game, and kept the Rangers in this game with several big time saves.
There wasn't a whole lot of open ice all throughout this game, and that was extremely evident in the first period when both teams remained scoreless after 20 minutes. Much of the same carried over to the second period, but the Bruins eventually found the first goal at the 9:04 mark. It all started with a bad turnover by Chris Kreider in the neutral zone, and the Bruins transitioned the puck back into the offensive zone. Jimmy Hayes entered the zone on a 1-on-2 disadvantage, and fired a quick shot between Kevin Klein and Keith Yandle.
The shot came from quite a distance out, and Lundqvist didn't appear to pick up the shot as it came in on net. The puck sailed just under his glove, and it gave the Bruins a 1-0 lead midway through the second period. It was a tough goal to give up given the circumstances, but, the Rangers offense eventually responded later in the third period. Just 35 seconds into the final frame, Derick Brassard pulled the Rangers even after tapping home a beautiful pass from Mats Zuccarello.
Ryan McDonagh deserves a ton of praise for getting the play started, and kept the puck in the zone after the Bruins attempted to clear the puck multiple times. After the final keep in, the puck deflected over to Zuccarello, who fed a pass through Torey Krug's legs and right on to the tape of Brassard. It was a huge goal to not only tie up the game, but also to jump start the offense after the well went dry after 40 minutes.
After grinding out a hard fought third period, the Rangers finally found their second goal with a little under two minutes remaining in regulation. After Kevin Klein's booming slap shot missed the net wide, Keith Yandle collected the puck on the other side of the zone and tossed another shot towards Tuukka Rask. As the puck came in on net, Jesper Fast wound up getting a piece of the puck and scored on a ridiculous deflection off to the left side of the net.
That gave the Rangers a 2-1 lead late in the third period, and it set the stage for a hectic minute and a half. The Rangers, backed by Henrik Lundqvist, were able to kill off the remaining time on the clock, and held on to take a 2-1 win over the Boston Bruins. After an important win, the Rangers will have an off day tomorrow before heading into Brooklyn for their second matchup of the season against the New York Islanders.