For the second year in a row in the Division Finals, the New York Rangers erased a 3-1 series deficit to advance to the Conference Finals. Once again, this game ended with a 2-1 score. Once again, the goaltenders stood on their heads. Once again, the Rangers won an elimination game at home.
Braden Holtby had 37 saves. Henrik Lundqvist had 35 saves. Both goalies put on a clinic in this series. Both goalies are the reasons why this series went seven. The Rangers won, but give Holtby his due. Wow.
That’s all I got folks. On to the goals:
Caps 1, Rangers 0
Ryan McDonagh loses a board battle with Alex Ovechkin after a faceoff, allowing Nick Backstrom to get the loose puck down to Marcus Johanssen down the boards. Ovechkin then cuts to the net, where McDonagh loses him for a step before trying valiantly to catch up. That one step was enough for a passer like Johanssen, and he hits Ovechkin in stride alone. Ovechkin isn’t missing from there.
Rangers 1, Caps 1
With the Rangers on the powerplay, McDonagh made a good play to keep the zone and get the puck to J.T. Miller along the boards. Kevin Hayes, in on the initial rush for the zone entry, had circled back before McDonagh kept the zone. The Caps didn’t pick him up as he got to the back door, and Miller hit him with a perfect pass for the easy tip-in.
Rangers 2, Caps 1
Derek Stepan. Game, set, match.
Very even throughout, although the Caps had long stretches where they pinned the Rangers in their own end, especially in overtime. They certainly had the better chances.
As noted above, the Caps had the better chances. That shouldn’t surprise anyone.
Consistent with above. The Caps got a lot of prime chances. Henrik Lundqvist and the defense stood tall.
Enjoy it. The Rangers have a date with Tampa Bay"Goal breakdown: Derek Stepan sends the Rangers to the Conference Finals",