Just 24 hours after topping the Colorado Avalanche in the shootout, the New York Rangers looked to put together a winning streak against the Washington Capitals. While they were able to hang with the Capitals for most of the game, the Capitals came away with the final goal in overtime. Here is the goal breakdown from tonight’s contest.
Mika Zibanejad (2) - Assists: Chris Kreider (2) & Neal Pionk (1)
This was the first of many great plays by Neal Pionk in this game, as he rushed up the ice to create an odd-man rush across the blue line. Pionk was able to find Mika Zibanejad open in the high slot, and despite being denied the first time, Mika put home his own rebound to make it a 1-0 game.
John Carlson (3) - Assists: Nicklas Backstrom (7)
This was pretty much an identical goal from the Colorado game, minus the deflection in front. John Carlson’s point shot somehow found its way through a triple layered screen and beat Henrik Lundqvist clean over the shoulder. Nothing that could really be done on Lundqvist’s part and the Rangers found themselves tied.
Alex Ovechkin (5) - Assists: John Carlson (5) & Brett Connolly (4)
This goal really doesn’t even need much a breakdown because it’s no surprise where Ovechkin wound up scoring from. Henrik Lundqvist appeared to relax as the puck went across the ice because it didn’t seem like Ovechkin was in a prime shooting position. However, Ovi tossed a quick shot that fooled Hank and the Capitals took their first lead of the night.
Jimmy Vesey (3) - Assists: Neal Pionk (2) & Brett Howden (2)
After handfuls of scoring opportunities over the last couple of games, Jimmy Vesey finally buried a golden chance in front of the net. The Rangers caught a bit of a fortunate bounce on Neal Pionk’s point shot, and Vesey tapped the loose puck around Braden Holtby.
Alex Ovechkin (6) - Assists: John Carlson (6) & Nicklas Backstrom (8)
Almost identical to Ovechkin’s first goal, he was planted right in his office and absolutely wired a slap shot home on a pass from Backstrom. The goal came at the worst possible time too, and put the Rangers down by a goal heading into the third period.
Chris Kreider (4) - Assists: Neal Pionk (3) & Mika Zibanejad (2)
Even though it appeared as if the Capitals late second period goal was back breaking, the Rangers responded right back halfway through the third. Neal Pionk picked up his third assist of the night on a perfectly placed wrist shot and Chris Kreider deflected home the shot to make it a 3-3 game.
4-3 Capitals (OT)
Matt Niskanen (1) - Assists: Evengy Kuznetsov (6) & T.J. Oshie (3)
Both teams traded chances at either end of the rink, but it was the Capitals who were able to capitalize on their opportunity. Henrik Lundqvist made a great initial glove save on Kuznetsov, but the rebound dropped right in the crease and Niskanen tapped it home for the game winner.
Following tonight’s loss, the Rangers will be out of game action until Saturday evening when they take on the Calgary Flames at Madison Square Garden.