The New York Rangers had a two-goal lead firmly in their grasps, only to have it slip away in a matter of minutes in the third period. A late 5-on-3 power play opportunity seemed like a prime opportunity to end the game, but the Rangers let it slip right through their fingertips. Thatcher Demko played out of his mind during the final five minutes, and even made a save without a blocker to keep the game tied at 2-2.
Mika Zibanejad (2) - Artemiy Panarin (8) & Adam Fox (8) PPG - 2:33
Following an early penalty on Vancouver a little over a minute and a half into the second period, the Rangers went to work on their second power play of the evening. A great defensive play by Adam Fox in the defensive end led to a rush the other way, and the Rangers took full advantage of the opportunity. Artemiy Panarin found Mika Zibanejad cutting to the net on the back post, and put the puck right on his tape for the easy deflection. Thatcher Demko never stood a chance, and the Rangers jumped out to the early 1-0 lead.
Artemiy Panarin (2) - Adam Fox (9) & Ryan Strome (2) PPG - 13:13
Just past the halfway mark of the period, the Rangers were tasked with killing off three straight penalties. The Rangers did an excellent job of closing down passing lanes, and were eventually rewarded with a power play of their own at the 13:09 mark. Almost immediately off of the faceoff win, Adam Fox zipped the puck over to Artemiy Panarin for the quick one-timer shot. Panarin’s shot from just inside the blue line took a slight deflection off of Tucker Poolman’s stick, and beat Demko over the shoulder.
J.T. Miller (2) - Connor Garland (6) & Elias Pettersson (4) - 1:29
With the Rangers hanging onto a 2-0 lead entering the third period, the Canucks made quick work of jumping right back into the game. Elias Pettersson found Connor Garland wide open along the right side of the goal line, and hit him with a crisp pass on the tape. Garland evaluated the open ice, and eventually found J.T. Miller cutting to the net on the back door. Miller was able to tape the hard pass past Igor Shesterkin and brought Vancouver back within a goal.
Vasily Podkolzin (2) - Connor Garland (7) & Tyler Myers (4) - 5:19
Nearly four minutes later, the Canucks made things interesting as they tied up the game courtesy of Vasily Podkolzin. Connor Garland was all along down low once again, and he made another great pass to find Podkolzin in the high slot. Podkolzin absolutely stepped into a heavy shot and wired the puck over the shoulder of Igor Shesterkin to make it a 2-2 game early in the third period.
J.T. Miller (3) - Quinn Hughes (5) - 2:22
After an absolutely wild sequence at the end of the third period, this game headed to overtime with the Rangers failing to convert on a late 5-on-3 opportunity. A great chance by the Rangers at one end led directly to a breakaway at the other for Vancouver as Quinn Hughes found J.T. Miller cutting up the ice. Igor Shesterkin made the initial glove save on Miller, but was unable to locate the puck as it slid between his legs behind the net. J.T. Miller quickly corralled the loose puck and tucked it over the goal line on the far post to give the Canucks a 3-2 win in overtime.
It definitely was not a great showing in the third period for the Rangers, and then they completely lit the 5-on-3 power play on fire with a lack of finishing ability. While Thatcher Demko deserves a ton of praise for the half a dozen saves he made in panic mode, the Rangers missed open nets on three separate occasions. Despite losing, the Rangers still managed to gain a point and will have two scheduled off days before returning to action on Friday against the Edmonton Oilers.