Mika Zibanejad puts Habs on the brink with overtime winnerApril 21, 2017, by
The New York Rangers are one weird team. In one day, they make us think they can’t do anything right. Then they rebound and look like the best team in the East. Then they follow that up by giving everyone heart attacks, playing simultaneously the best and the worst hockey we’ve seen. But in the end, it was a deflected Chris Kreider shot that went right to Mika Zibanejad that made us all get noise complaints in our neighborhoods. With one deflection, the Rangers are one win away from the Atlantic Division Final.
This was an odd game. The Rangers were downright bad in the first two periods. They were dominated at both ends of the ice and simply couldn’t get the puck out of their zone. Then they tied it late in the second. They killed two huge penalties before that. And then it was all Rangers. They poured it on while the Habs struggled to deal with their speed. The pressure paid off, as it always does. Proper process breeds success, especially with this level of skill.
On to the goals:
Habs 1, Rangers 0
Marc Staal turned the puck over behind the net to Arturri Lehkonen. That gave the Habs time with the puck. Staal was then beat to the puck behind the net by Lehkonen, whose wrap around beat Hank.
Rangers 1, Habs 1
Mika Zibanejad made a great play in the defensive zone, quickly transitioning to a PK rush with Jesper Fast. Fast cut to the net from the inside while Zibanejad crossed behind him. Zibanejad flipped a great pass to Fast, who finsihed.
Habs 2, Rangers 1
For some reason, Brendan Gallagher had all day to shoot from the high slot. Don’t quite know why he was this open and had this much time from there.
Rangers 2, Habs 2
Rangers 3, Habs 2
Score Adjusted Even Strength Corsi
The first two periods left us all wondering. Then the third happened. The Rangers poured it on. The Habs defense backed up, unable to deal with their speed. The chances and shot attempts piled up. This continued in overtime. It was just like Game Four. Speed kills.
What a difference a period makes. The first two periods were not pretty, with the Rangers giving up chances and struggling to get their own. And then, as said above, the third happened. If not for Carey Price, this game would have been over before overtime. But then again, if not for Henrik Lundqvist, the Rangers would have been out of it by the third. Yet again, Hank outdueled Price.
Many, and I need to include myself in this, didn’t think the Rangers would last six after seeing Game Three. Now they have a chance to win it on home ice, a place where the most recent game was pure domination up and down the ice. Ride the momentum. Play the speed game. Move on to the next round. Prove me wrong. I %$&^ing dare you!"Mika Zibanejad puts Habs on the brink with overtime winner",