Recap: Rangers Sweep Season Series With Boston 

Recap: Rangers Sweep Season Series With Boston 
Mar 21, 2024; Boston, Massachusetts, USA; New York Rangers left wing Artemi Panarin (10) celebrates with left wing Alexis Lafreniere (13) after scoring a goal against the Boston Bruins during the second period at the TD Garden. Mandatory Credit: Brian Fluharty-USA TODAY Sports

Looking for a bounceback win after their loss to Winnipeg, the Rangers took on the Boston Bruins for their third and final regular season meeting. Plenty to talk about going into this one as Massachusetts Native Peter Laviolette was set to coach his 1,500 NHL game and Jonathan Quick looked to tie Ryan Miller on the all-time wins list by American born goaltenders.

Matt Rempe would also rejoin the line-up for his first game following his recent four game suspension. Needless to say, the stage was set for what was bound to be a memorable night in Boston.

1st Period:

Right out of the gate Alexis Lafrenière did a great job coming up the middle 1-on-1 and ended up taking a stick up high from Brandon Carlo to give the Rangers an early power play. They got some good looks on the man advantage, especially from the second unit but wouldn’t find a way to convert through the two minutes.

Just five minutes after the Bruins took their penalty, the Rangers took one of their own to give Boston their first man advantage of the night. As soon as time was expiring on the power play, Jonathan Quick, who more or less carried the Rangers through that penalty kill, made two monstrous saves but the penalty killers could not get the puck out of harm’s way. Jake DeBrusk managed to send the third rebound to the back of the net to give Boston an early 1-0 lead.

Not a great goal for the Rangers to give up as all four penalty killers were caught just watching the play unfold, neglecting to give their goalie any assistance on the play. The Rangers didn’t sit back and got yet another great shift from their third line of Cuylle – Wennberg – Kakko to generate a good chance to quickly tie things up. However as the period went on, the Rangers were quickly going stagnant as they weren’t playing anywhere close to the pace they were playing with early on.

With four minutes to go, the Rangers headed back to the penalty kill as Chris Kreider was called for tripping Hampus Lindholm behind the Bruins net. This led to much of the same as the first power play chance where Quick had to bail the Rangers out on a couple of too close for comfort chances. That more or less brought an end to the games first twenty as the Bruins had the 1-0 lead. The Rangers started the period strong, out-shooting Boston 5-1 but by the end of the period, Boston had the advantage in shots 14-9.

Despite neither team formally capitalizing on the power play, special teams was quickly becoming a difference maker as Boston really took control of things as a result of their efforts with the man advantage.

2nd Period:

It was a very slow start to the second as neither team really got much of anything going. The Rangers in particular were continuing to play quite lackadaisical, reaching for plays, not moving their feet or playing with much aggression in either end of the ice.

Just two minutes away from the midway point of the night, Braden Schneider threw the puck to the slot which ended up on the stick of Artemiy Panarin. Panarin threw a quick shot on net that looked as though it was going to be blocked but somehow managed to sneak through Jeremy Swayman to tie things up, 1-1.

Things began to pick up from there as the Rangers had some life and there was some more excitement surrounding play. With about three minutes to go in the second period, Adam Fox was called for his second penalty of the night as he appeared to have clipped Justin Brazeau with a high stick. This would end up being the Rangers best penalty kill of the night as Chris Kreider picked up a breakaway and kept the Bruins from any serious scoring chances.

They managed to build off that just before the period came to an end as some great pressure from Alex Wennberg forced a Boston turnover. As Panarin picked up the puck, he attempted to pass it across the slot but the puck went off a Bruins defender and ended up in the back of the net to put the Rangers up 2-1.

Panarin picks up his 40th goal of the season, continuing to build on his career year as he joins some pretty elite company for another stat in the Rangers record book.

Panarin nearly picked up a hat-trick as he ripped a shot off the post and Vincent Trocheck almost had the rebound from further out towards the top of the circle. Nevertheless, the Rangers took a one goal lead into the second intermission. Was a pretty low event period until the final couple of minutes but the Rangers picked it up with shots on goal as they had the edge 13-6 through the second period.

3rd Period:

It would be a much busier start to the final period of regulation as the Rangers gave up and regained the lead within the first five minutes. Justin Brazeau managed to tap in a rolling puck that squeezed past Quick to briefly tie things up at two goals apiece.

Then just 40 seconds later, Erik Gustafsson fed a great pass across to Adam Fox who faked a pass just enough to get Swayman moving. As soon as he bit, Fox let a perfect wrist shot go to beat him up high to regain the lead, 3-2.

It would be a quiet rest of the period until the final couple of minutes. The Rangers really tightened up their overall game and were much better defensively which helped shut down the Bruins, keeping their offensive zone chances to a minimum.

With just over two minutes to go, the Bruins pulled Swayman for the extra attacker and it wasn’t long before the Rangers were able to put one in the empty net. Mika Zibanejad made a good defensive play which prompted the breakout and was rewarded with the goal to make it 4-2. The Bruins pulled Swayman again and the Rangers were able to get Panarin his hat-trick to cap things off at 5-2.

What an incredible year Artemiy Panarin is having. His third of the night comes as his 98th point of the season as he continues to prove himself as this team’s top player, making quite the case for himself in the Hart Trophy conversation.

It would also be a night to remember for Jonathan Quick who picks up his 391st career win, tying him with Ryan Miller for wins by an American-born goaltender. A well-deserved accolade for the respected veteran who was a key part of the Rangers winning this game.

​​Wasn’t the most exciting game overall but the Rangers definitely stuck with it and found their game to lock down defensively, coming out with another big win in Boston. The Rangers are right back at it Saturday Night at 8 o’clock with another Eastern Conference heavy weight in the Florida Panthers as they’ll look to keep the wins coming to take hold of first in the league.