Well, the New York Rangers have finally snapped their losing and won a home game. It took over a month and a half and eight games, but the streak is finally dead. It certainly didn’t come easy though, with the Flyers scoring two goals within a minute to make it a one goal game late in the third period. Thankfully, the Flyers decided to kill the final 15 seconds on their own, so it all evened out in the end.
Early during the second period, the home woes looked to be creeping back into the Rangers’ game as Valtteri Filppula opened the scoring for the Flyers. The goal came off of a missed clearing attempt by the blue line, which allowed Filppula to walk his way back into the zone. After receiving a quick pass back from Jordan Weal, Filppula shot the puck on his backhand and beat Lundqvist over the blocker side.
Despite giving up the early goal, the Rangers didn’t appear phased even with their recent home struggles. A few minutes later, the Rangers found the tying goal courtesy of Mika Zibanejad, and never looked back. Zuccarello played a bit part in the Rangers success tonight, as he set up the first three goals and sent the Rangers off to the races after giving up the first goal.
Shortly after Zibanejad’s tally, Brendan Smith picked up his first goal as a Ranger off of a beautiful centering feed from Zuccarello. Smith was able to catch the puck in stride, and finished off the chance with a backhand to make it 2-1 Rangers. With the game in their favor, the Rangers carried their strong play over to the third period where they added another pair of goals.
Oscar Lindberg started it off by slamming home his own rebound at the 7:01 mark, and Chris Kreider again at 9:10 with a deflection in front of Anthony Stolarz. It appeared as if the Rangers were going to finally going to pick up a home win, and in relatively easy fashion with a 4-1 lead. That was until the Flyers stormed back in the final two minutes and miraculously made it a one goal game.
Brayden Schenn pulled the Flyers within a pair after his long distance slap shot found it’s way through traffic, and beat Lundqvist high over the shoulder. Then it was Valtteri Filppula with over a minute remaining, as he brought the Flyers within one off of a rebound goal in the crease. Suddenly, the Rangers comfortable lead practically vanished right before their eyes as they clung to a 4-3 lead with a minute remaining.
Henrik Lundqvist came to the rescue as the clock ticked down, and he finished off the Flyers with one final glove save in the closing seconds. The Flyers did the rest, as Filppula decided to kill off the remaining seconds and never even put the shot towards the net with the Flyers season on the line. For the Rangers, this was their third consecutive 100 point season, and they sit firmly in the first Wild Card spot heading into Wednesday’s contest against the Washington Capitals.