Both the Blues and the Blueshirts have struggled lately and underachieved this year in general. They faced off Monday night, hoping that this might be the game that turns their respective seasons around. After a rollercoaster of a game, the Rangers came out on top, 6-4.
Neither team had much of a spark to start, but the first period ended with a cluster of goals. Braden Schneider took a shot from the half boards past a perfect screen from Sammy Blais for his third goal of the season. A couple minutes later, erstwhile Ranger Pavel Buchnevich tied the game when he deflected on a deflection that trickled through Igor Shesterkin. In the final minute of the period, Adam Fox scored his first powerplay of the season via a wrister off the face off that looked like it may have gotten a piece of Buchnevich.
Perfect screen by Sammy.— New York Rangers (@NYRangers) December 6, 2022
Perfect shot by Schneids. pic.twitter.com/qx1kE4p55d
Conversely, the second period started with two quick goals. Mika Zibanejad knocked the puck away from Robert Thomas and directly to Vladimir Taraesnko. Adam Fox inadvertently deflected the ensuing wrister past Shesterkin. The Rangers immediately answered, when Vincent Trocheck tipped a shot by Artemi Panarin. There was a lull in scoring for a while ten minutes after that, but the Rangers took back-to-back penalties, the second of which led to the tying goal by Jordan Kyrou. They followed it up with another. Kyrou and Schenn combined for a pretty little give and go. Shesterkin made the initial save, but the Rangers failed to clear the puck or cover Ryan O’Reilly, who crashed the net and scored the go-ahead goal.
After the O’Reilly goal, the Rangers didn’t register another shot on goal until five minutes into the third period. With the line blender warmed up, the combination of Lafrenière-Zibanejad-Kakko sustained some offensive zone time. Binnington robbed Kakko in the slot before conceding a soft goal on an uncontested point shot by K’Andre Miller. It was Miller’s first of the year. That line scored another go-ahead goal in short order, when Lafrenière scored on yet another deflection, this one on a shot by Zibanejad.
Some life from the Rangers. Miller with the tally to knot the score 4-4 pic.twitter.com/YlOk611Trk— Shayna (@hayyyshayyy) December 6, 2022
The Rangers added a sixth goal shorthanded. Chris Kreider took advantage of an Ivan Barbashev give away, turning on the jets and beating Binnington with a move to the backhand. He was absolutely fired up upon scoring, and his goal would be the last of the game, giving the Rangers a 6-4 victory.
It was another uneven effort for the Rangers, but this time they found a way to win. They had a solid third period, and there was a sense of emotional release after Kreider’s goal. There’s more to be done, but for now a win is a win.
The Rangers next play against former future Ranger Jack Eichel and the Las Vegas Golden Knights on Wednesday.