Recap: Three Goal Third Sinks Rangers, 3-2

After a highly successful weekend, the Rangers took on the Metro-leading Carolina Hurricanes. The Canes have surrendered less goals that every team except Boston, so winning by a margin of six-plus was unlikely, but the Rangers did see Ryan Lindgren return to the lineup.

First Period:

It took until the final three minutes of the first, but the Rangers drew first blood. After facing Derek Stepan on an offensive zone faceoff, Barclay Goodrow got behind the erstwhile Ranger, retrieved the puck, and fed Tyler Motte in front the crease. Motte beat Frederik Anderson for his sixth goal of the season. The goal was also Motte’s third in the past four games. As Tom Dianora recently noted, the emergence Vesey, Goodrow, and Motte on the fourth line is a huge boon to the team’s outlook.

econd Period:

Carolina’s defensive structure stifled the Rangers. For the first eighteen minutes, New York only managed three shots, two of which were on goal, and zero of which were from a dangerous area. Fortunately, the Rangers mostly kept the Canes to the outside, and when they didn’t Igor was there.

Late in the period, Ryan Lindgren got tangled up with Jesper Fast and headed to the locker room. He returned to start the third, but Ryan, for the love of god, please stay healthy. I don’t know if I can emotionally handle another extended period of Mikkola-Fox.

Third Period:

After two and a half periods of solid defense and goaltending, both teams scored a flurry of goals in the third.

Igor and the Rangers came within 11 minutes of the team’s third straight shutout, but Carolina scored with 10:11 to go. Derek Stepan received an outlet pass at the blueline and drew K’Andre Miller. Miller and Jimmy Vesey seemed unclear about who was meant to cover the Jalen Chatfield as the defender received the pass, entered the zone, and tied the game on a high snipe.

The Rangers regained the lead almost immediately. Lindgren took a shot that deflected off Brent Burns and directly to Kaapo Kakko, who punched it in for his first goal in 11 games.

But just as quickly, the Canes scored again. Jordan Staal muscled Mika Zibanejad off the puck and played it around to Jesper Fast. Fast centered the puck to Stefan Noesen, and he capitalized on the high-danger chance.

Carolina jumped ahead with their second goal in a row. Lindgren, perhaps a bit rusty, had an opportunity to clear the zone, but lost his balance. Jesperi Kotkaniemi came away with the puck and moved it to Burns, who setup Teuvo Teravainen for the redirect in front to give the Canes a 3-2 win.

. . .

Pretty tough loss there for the Rangers. They couldn’t create much offense at all, and though they shut down the Canes for a while, giving up three goals in the back half of the third is tough. Suffice to say my concerns about their ability to protect leads is not assuaged. Igor was pretty good again overall, facing 39 shots. Hopefully the quick collapse won’t throw him off, as his struggles often seem to be mental. Glad to see Motte score again, and glad Lindgren’s back.

The Rangers will have a chance at revenge Thursday night in Carolina.