The New York Rangers had a chance to build off of Thursday’s exhilarating win in Buffalo, but were handed a 5-4 overtime loss by the Pittsburgh Penguins. New York was the better team through 40 minutes of play, but they failed to show up in the third period and Pittsburgh took advantage. Alexandar Georgiev got the nod tonight, which was surprising turn of events, being that Igor Shesterkin found his form against the Sabres. Georgiev had a decent workload tonight turning aside 33 saves, but also struggled at times tracking the puck in front of the net.
Jason Zucker (2) - Pierre-Olivier Joseph (2) & Kasperi Kapanen (3) - 7:39
Despite the Rangers coming out with some strong opening shifts, the Penguins were able to overcome the pressure and jumped out to an early 1-0 lead. A turnover in the offensive zone led to a quick rush the other way for Pittsburgh, and Jason Zucker finished off a passing play between Kasperi Kapanen and Pierre-Olivier Joseph. Zucker was able to position himself just inside the right post, and deflected the shot pass from Joseph past Alexandar Georgiev.
Brendan Lemieux (1) - Phil Di Giuseppe (5) & Ryan Lindgren (1) - 13:52
A few minutes after the Penguins’ opening goal, the fourth line went to work and delivered on a Brendan Lemieux skirmish in front of the crease. Phil Di Giuseppe wound up tossing the puck at Casey DeSmith in hopes of a rebound, and he got exactly that. Brendan Lemieux was able to cause chaos as he drove to the net and the puck somehow slipped under DeSmith. Even though Lemieux was credited with the goal, it looked as if there was some friendly on Pittsburgh’s part as John Marino chipped the puck into his own net. Either way, it counted and the Rangers were able to tie up the game at 1-1.
Brandon Tanev (3) - Pierre-Olivier Joseph (3) & Teddy Bluger (4) - 19:20
The Rangers and giving up late period goals has become an alarming trend this season, and Pittsburgh regained their lead at the 19:20 mark. Pittsburgh was able to take possession after winning an offensive zone faceoff, and the puck worked its way to Pierre-Olivier Joseph. Brandon Tanev immediately made his way to the front of the net, and deflected the ensuing point shot under Georgiev’s right pad.
Kevin Rooney (1) - K’Andre Miller (2) & Ryan Strome (1) SHG - 7:20
Kevin Rooney scores his first as a #NYR, assisted by K'Andre Miller on a 2-on-0 while short-handed. pic.twitter.com/MhToa1MrsJ— Shayna (@hayyyshayyy) January 31, 2021
New York had to go to work early in the second period as Brendan Smith was sent off for a tripping minor. The Rangers needed a big kill to prevent themselves from going down by a pair of goals, and boy did they answer. Rather than waiting to kill off the penalty, the Rangers were able to make the Penguins pay as they broke in on a 2-on-0 chance while shorthanded. K’Andre Miller and Kevin Rooney capped off the breakaway with a beautiful give-and-go, and Rooney tapped home his first as a New York Ranger.
Miller deserves a ton of credit as well for having an immense amount of patience in close to tap the puck back over to Rooney with ease. This goal would be just the start of a wild second period at Madison Square Garden.
Kasperi Kapanen (2) -Evgeni Malkin (3) - 9:42
A little over two minutes after the Rangers incredible shorthanded goal, the Penguins responded right back with a goal of their own, and restored the one-goal lead. A costly turnover at the blue line by Brendan Smith allowed Kasperi Kapanen to jump the zone, and Evgeni Malkin led him on a breakaway. Alexandar Georgiev was unable to get his glove up in time and Kapanen beat him under the crossbar to make it a 3-2 game.
Chris Kreider (3) - Jacob Trouba (2) & K’Andre Miller (3) - 10:25
The #NYR push back with a goal of their own. Kreider ties the game 3-3. Two assists for Miller so far. pic.twitter.com/X6ZKrGOvxU— Shayna (@hayyyshayyy) January 31, 2021
As if this period wasn’t wild enough, the Rangers didn’t feel sorry for themselves after allowing the third go-ahead goal and responded. Under a minute after Kapanen’s breakaway goal, Chris Kreider slammed home his third goal of the season off of a rebound in front of the net. K’Andre Miller setup the chance with a centering feed out to Jacob Trouba, and Trouba immediately wired a slap shot towards the net. DeSmith was unable to handle the heavy speed on the shot, and kicked the puck right out to the slot where Kreider was ready and waiting.
Artemiy Panarin (4) - Pavel Buchnevich (5) & Tony DeAngelo (1) PPG - 16:01
Buchnevich Panarin pic.twitter.com/LZNJ17H5UK— Shayna (@hayyyshayyy) January 31, 2021
Artemiy Panarin capped off the Rangers’ three-goal third period and gave New York their first lead of the evening on the power play. Pavel Buchnevich and Panarin made excellent work of the Penguins down below the goal line, before eventually working the puck back out to the middle of the ice. Buchnevich laid a perfect pass onto the tape of Panarin, who absolutely stepped into the shot and beat Casey DeSmith over the glove hand. That gave the Rangers a 4-3 lead in the game, and a chance to close out the game in the final 20 minutes.
Jake Guentzel (3) - Cody Ceci (2) & John Marino (1) - 9:18
The Rangers picked a bad time to have a bad period, and the Penguins took complete advantage by suffocating the Rangers in the offensive zone. That eventually led to the game-tying goal as Jake Guentzel slam home the rebound after getting three swats at the loose puck. There probably should have been a hi-sticking call the play before the goal as Ryan Lindgren was clipped up high by none other than the eventual goal scorer. The lack of a penalty aside though, the Rangers needed to do a much better job of clearing the front of their net.
Sidney Crosby (4) - Pierre-Olivier Joseph (4) & Bryan Rust (5) - 2:27
Crosby wins the game in overtime. Zibanejad and Panarin were on the ice for about two minutes, DeAngelo for ~1:45. pic.twitter.com/0fviLsp5Js— Shayna (@hayyyshayyy) January 31, 2021
It took just 2:27 for the Penguins to end the game as Sidney Crosby and the Penguins pinned the Rangers in their own zone. Mika Zibanejad and Artemiy Panarin were never able to get off the ice, and were absolutely gassed after spending nearly two minutes without a line change. The lack of energy allowed Crosby to attack the middle of the ice with ease, and he snapped a shot through the legs of Alexandar Georgiev.
Another game, another blown lead in the third period leads to an overtime loss. The Rangers weren’t able to get much puck possession in the overtime period, and that led to the extended shift for Zibanejad and Panarin. Giving Crosby that time and space will never end well, and Alexandar Georgiev wasn’t able to come with the big save to preserve the game. Through 40 minutes, the Rangers were clearly the better team, but the lack of energy in the third period undid all of the good.
Following another deflating overtime loss, the Rangers will meet up with the Pittsburgh Penguins again on Monday night in hopes of a better outcome.