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Rangers vs Maple Leafs: Rangers Allow Three Goals in the Third Against Toronto

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NHL: DEC 20 Maple Leafs at Rangers Photo by Joshua Sarner/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

The New York Rangers dropped their third straight game this evening against the Toronto Maple Leafs. New York allowed three goals in the third period after being tying the game twice through 40 minutes. Alexandar Georgiev got the nod in goal for the Rangers and he turned away 34 of the 40 shots he faced during the game.

1st Period

Peter Engvall (2) - Justin Holl (10) & Ilya Mikeyev (14) - 9:38 1st Period

Toronto didn’t waste much time exposing the Rangers defense early in this game, and jumped out to a 1-0 lead just over nine minutes into regulation. Peter Engvall and Justin Holl created the chance with a great give-and-go from the right point spot. Engvall received a great pass back from Holl as he entered the high slot, pivoted to his left and sniped a shot under the crossbar.

William Nylander (12) - Kasperi Kapanen (11) - 11:52 1st Period

About two minutes after Peter Engvall’s opening marker, the Maple Leafs quickly added another goal and took a 2-0 lead in this game. Another pass from behind the net by Alexandar Georgiev wound up skipping over Mika Zibanejad’s stick and went right to Kasperi Kapanen. Kapanen shoveled a shot on net with Georgiev still not fully reset in his crease, and William Nylander capitalized on the rebound in front to pick up his 12th goal of the season.

Brady Skjei (5) - Mika Zibanejad (13) & Chris Kreider (11) - 14:04 1st Period

New York finally got on the board at the 14:04 mark of the period as Brady Skjei’s move in front of the net slipped through Frederik Andersen. A strong forecheck by Chris Kreider created the chance as he redirected a pass over to Mika Zibanejad in the high slot. Zibanejad elected to make the extra pass with space at the top of the crease and Brady Skjei got the last touch on the puck before it crossed the goal line.

Ryan Strome (7) - Artemiy Panarin (24) & Pavel Buchnevich (15) - 17:51 1st Period

The Rangers continued their strong forecheck in the offensive zone, and it led directly to the tying goal late in the first period. Pavel Buchnevich was able to cause some chaos behind Toronto’s net and chipped a pass out front to Artemiy Panarin. The Breadman was able draw Frederik Andersen to the post and fed a no-look pass over to Ryan Strome on the far side to knot up the game.

2nd Period

Mitchell Marner (7) PPG - Austin Matthews (16) & William Nylander (14) - 2:50 2nd Period

Toronto jumped back in front early in the first period as Mitchell Marner converted on the power play for his seventh goal of the season. After receiving a pass from Austin Matthews, Marner cycled down the left side of the ice and threw a hard, low shot on net looking for the deflection. He wound up getting a deflection, but it came off of some friendly fire as the puck hit Brady Skjei’s stick and deflected in over Alexandar Georgiev.

Pavel Buchnevich (6) - Marc Staal (3) & Tony DeAngelo (17) - 5:27 2nd Period

Thankfully, the Rangers responded a little under three minutes later and tied the game for the second time of the night. Pavel Buchnevich, much like Ryan Strome, was riding an extended goal drought and finally snapped his streak to pick up his sixth goal of the season. This goal wasn’t much of a finesse goal but more of being in the right spot at the right time and getting the puck on net. Buchnevich was able to pick up the rebound generated by Marc Staal and beat Andersen through the legs to make it a 3-3 game.

3rd Period

William Nylander (13) - Austin Matthews (17) & Travis Dermott (3) - 2:10 3rd Period

Just two minutes into the third period, the Maple Leafs were able to catch the Rangers in transition and took their third lead of the evening. Austin Matthews started the 3-on-2 rush into the Rangers zone and immediately dished the puck over to William Nylander as they crossed the blue line. Nylander wound up for a wrist shot inside the right faceoff circle and snapped a shot through Georgiev’s legs.

Mitchell Marner (8) - Unassisted - 2:57 3rd Period

Mitchell Marner was able to make the Rangers pay again under a minute later after he forced the Rangers into another turnover. Ryan Strome’s attempted pass back was picked off by Marner along the boards, and he made a quick move to the middle of the ice. Just as a defender was ready to close in on him, Marner snapped a shot and beat Georgiev on the far side of the net.

Ilya Mikheyev (7) - Alexander Kerfoot (6) - 16:23 3rd Period

Lackluster play in the neutral zone wound up haunting the Rangers yet again, and Toronto added another insurance marker to make it a three-goal lead. Brett Howden wound up whiffing on the puck in the neutral zone, and the puck slipped right through to Ilya Mikheyev entering the zone. Another high shot beat Georgiev over the glove hand, and Mikheyev closed out the scoring for the Maple Leafs.

The Rangers played well in this game through the first 40 minutes and were able to comeback from two deficits. Unfortunately, they were not ready for Toronto’s attack in the third period and were burned for three goals. Following tonight’s loss, the Rangers will have a scheduled off day tomorrow before returning to action on Sunday afternoon against the Anaheim Ducks.