- Mika Zibanejad (27) (Power Play) Assists: Chris Kreider (15), Artemi Panarin (43)
- Teuvo Teravainen (6) Unassisted
- Jesperi Kotkaniemi (8) Assists: Calvin de Haan (8), Andrei Svechnikov (24)
- Artemi Panarin (13) Assists: Vincent Trocheck (23), Jimmy Vesey (10)
- Artemi Panarin (14) Assists: Braden Schneider (9), Vincent Trocheck (24)
- Artemi Panarin (15) Unassisted
- Kaapo Kakko (11) (Empty Net) Assists: Alexis Lafreniere (18), Jacob Trouba (14)
- Artemi Panarin (16) Assists: Jimmy Vesey (11)
- This was a very impressive game where, after the first turnover filled few minutes, the Rangers were patient, got big saves from Jaro Halak and took advantage of the few opportunities that they had.
- Carolina owned most of the second period and scored twice, but at the end of the period it was 2-2. They scored pretty early in the third and then played very strong defensively, limited Carolina’s chances and kept scoring when they had their chances. The score makes it seem like a blowout, but the Rangers did have to find a way to win, but how they did it was very impressive, especially on the second half of a back-to-back.
- I had wondered whether it was smart to go with Igor Shesterkin last night and Jaro Halak tonight, but he was excellent and he has been excellent for quite some time.
- At some point teams will begin to defend the little deflection/no look pass that Chris Kreider makes to Mika Zibanejad on the PP, but until then it’s a very pretty way to score.
- This was quite the last 24 minutes or so for Artemi Panarin. Gerard Gallant swapped him and Chris Kreider in the second period and the Panarin/Vincent Trocheck duo, plus Jimmy Vesey, finally seemed to work. The Rangers will be at their best if Panarin and Trocheck can find their way consistently and they can go with three lines that have the potential to dominate in the offensive zone. I do see the benefit of Kreider, Trocheck and Vesey/Goodrow being a match-up/forecheck line in the playoffs, but ultimately the Rangers will probably be at their best if Zibanejad and Panarin are separate. They can then figure out where the best spot for Vladimir Tarasenko will be.
- Panarin has had an up-and-down season. The points are there, but teams are pressuring him more and he’s trying to force too many plays across the ice. I love seeing him shoot and hopefully the possibility of him shooting more means that some other lanes may open up for passes.
- So it’s five in a row and you can just see the confidence that they are playing with. It’s been this way for weeks now, but they are playing, like they did for most of last year, like they know they are going to win. That it may not always be pretty, but at the end of the night they leave the ice with Chris Kreider and Mika Zibanejad hugging and two points.
- They also have a confidence, probably based upon their success in the playoffs last year, in their ability to beat Carolina. The Hurricanes are likely going to make a big move or two before the deadline and set up the potential for another grudge match of a second round series.
- The Rangers head out to Western Canada this week and will see Vancouver on Wednesday, the Oilers on Friday and Flames on Saturday.