New York Rangers: Offense comes alive in their time of need


For the second straight year, the New York Rangers have trailed 3-1 in the second-round of the NHL Playoffs.

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Last season, the Rangers were able to come from behind against the Pittsburgh Penguins, which shocked the hockey world. This season, it was the Rangers who came into the second-round as the big favorites, but they still found themselves trailing 3-1 in the series.

The main problem for the Rangers against the Washington Capitals has been their offense. It would take until late in Game 5, but the Rangers’ offense finally showed some signs of life. Chris Kreider would have clutch goal late in Game 5 to tie the game for the Rangers with under two minutes to play.

In overtime of Game 5, Ryan McDonagh would embrace his role as captain clutch for the Rangers with a game-winner. The final score of Game 5 was only 2-1, but the Rangers’ offense finally showed some signs of life.

One of the hero’s in Game 5, would waste no time making an impact in Game 6. Just 40 seconds into the game, Kreider scored his fourth goal of the playoffs to help set the tone early for New York.

Late in the first-period, the Rangers would be on the dreaded power-play, but they finally had some success. Once again it would be Kreider scoring for the Rangers, as his fifth goal of playoffs, and second of the period gave the Rangers a comfortable two-goal lead.

After allowing two goals in the first period, the Capitals would answer back with a goal from Jason Chimera early in the period.

In the third period, Rick Nash would finally score a goal for the Rangers. Nash is once again taking a lot of heat for playing poorly in the playoffs. The second goal of the playoffs at least came at a good time for Nash. Shortly after Nash’s goal, Dan Boyle would score as well to give the Rangers a commanding 4-1 lead with about 15 minutes to play.

Henrik Lundqvist has played very good throughout the series, but he wasn’t blitzed by shots like he was in Game 6. While trailing by three goals, the Capitals would unleash their best offensive rushes of the series.

Evgeny Kuznetsov would make it a two-goal game with his fifth goal of the postseason. The Capitals’ great play then resulted in a goal from Joel Ward with just under 10 minutes to play in the period.

With less than 3 minutes to play, James Sheppard took a costly penalty to send the No.1 power-play in the league to a man advantage. The Rangers and Lundqvist would survive the power-play, and leave Washington with a Game 6 win.

“They had one of the strongest pushes I have seen the team have,” Coach Alain Vigneault said of the Capitals to Brett Cyrgalis of the New York Post. “The building was loud and it was exciting right to the end.”

Lundqvist would face 45 shots in the game, and saved 42 of them in a great performance.

Game 6 shifts the advantage back into New York’s favor, as the Capitals, who have lost two straight, now need to win in Madison Square Garden.

Wednesday night in MSG will be when the Rangers and Capitals battle to advance to the Conference Finals.

Next: Who is the best Ranger of all-time?

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