Rangers recap: Zibanejad, Kreider deliver as Rangers get back into the series

mika zibanejad

After two losses where the offense, specifically from the top six, didn’t show up, the Rangers finally broke through. It wasn’t a massive offensive effort, but the Blueshirts got key goals from Mika Zibanejad and the eventual game winner from Chris Kreider en route to a 3-1 win in Game 3. The Rangers still trail the series 2-1, and will need another win on Tuesday night to even things up.

The Rangers broke a scoreless streak of 127 minutes with Zibanejad’s powerplay goal off good passing by a unit that hasn’t produced much all series. The Rangers needed to find ways to get Zibanejad open, and they moved him down to the lower circle to get this chance. He beat Antti Raanta for his first of the series, and also the Rangers first powerplay goal of the series.

Kreider, the guy who constantly delivers clutch goals for the Rangers, got his first of the series as well off an impossible angle. It’s funny, since Kreider missed an empty net later in the game, but he scored from where Zibanejad’s goal came from, but this one was over Raanta’a glove. Perhaps the Rangers have found something there.

Igor Shesterkin would allow a bit of a softie to Nino Niederreiter three minutes after Kreider’s goal, but he was brilliant for the rest of the game, stopping 43 of 44 shots, many of them good chances, to give the Rangers the win. But again, the Rangers need to win Tuesday too, or else they will have another 3-1 series deficit to overcome. Once was nice, but twice isn’t nearly as fun.