Adam Fox returned and the Rangers continued to win.
K’Andre Miller and Jimmy Vesey scored third period goals to rally the Rangers to a thrilling 3-2 win over the Detroit Red Wings at Madison Square Garden last night.
“Throughout the season, we’ve been able to win in different ways,.” Fox said. “Down a goal late, we still keep going, got a big one and then obviously to get that one and take the lead late.
The Rangers are now 5-0 after a loss and improved to 16-4-1. The loss snapped the Red Wings’ three game win streak and it was only their second loss in 11 games when they’ve had the lead going into the third period.
After missing ten games, Fox played 26 shifts and logged 21:31 of ice time and was in the opening lineup with his old partner, Ryan Lindgren. “Just wanted to get by those first couple of shifts, then you’re just playing hockey again,” said Fox.
Igor Shesterkin was sharp as he made 25 saves including a big stop in the latter stages of the third period when the game was still tied. Detroit’s Lucas Raymond was open at the side of the net and appeared ready to bury the puck, but Shesterkin was right there to deny the Red Wings’ left wing and keep the game tied.
The Rangers were trailing 2-1 in the third when Mika Zibanejad fed Miller just above the right face off circle for a one timer that beat Red Wings goaltender Ville Husso to tie the game at 9:14 of the third period. Zibanejad and Jacob Trouba had the assists on Miller’s 3rd goal of the season.
“Offensively, you’re starting to see Key [K’Andre] break through,” Coach Peter Laviolette said. “He’s up the ice, he’s involved in the play. At times, he’s leading the attack, he’s charging up the middle with the puck. The goal that he scored, he timed it just to be in the right position and the right place in the second wave.”
With 6:31 remaining and the Rangers still trailing by one, Alexis Lafreniere was called for holding. The penalty kill was successful on four of five previous Detroit power plays but they had to come up big one more time.
After killing off the penalty, Lafreniere came out of the box and had the puck in the offensive zone and fired a shot on net. Husso, who had a strong game with 38 saves in only his second game in 18 days, couldn’t handle the rebound as Vesey tried to push the puck under the Detroit goaltender. The puck caromed into the air where Vesey was able to swat at his own rebound and put it in the net for the go ahead goal.
“Laffy [Lafreniere] came out of the box, picked up the puck with some speed. Him and Troch [Trocheck] made a good play in the neutral zone,” Vesey said. “Laffy fell down for a second and I didn’t know how it was going to develop but they made a great play, got the puck to the net and just chipped in the rebound.”
After a short review to see if Vesey scored with a high stick, the good goal call on the ice was upheld. “Not going to lie but I didn’t want to look at the replay but my initial reaction was that it was good,” Vesay said.
Vesey has had a hot hand lately. The goal was his fifth of the season and it gave him four goals in his last seven games. “He’s [Vesey] a player that we count on and depend on for a lot of different things and right now he seems to be a little bit of a groove as well,” Laviolette said. “He’s playing really well.”
With less than two minutes left, Vincent Trocheck was called for tripping giving the Red Wings a golden opportunity to tie the game.
Shesterkin made a big save on Moritz Seider with less than 90 seconds left and Barclay Goodrow blocked Seider’s shot as the clock ran out and the Rangers had a well earned two points.
Following a scoreless first period, the Rangers scored the first goal of the game for 16th time in their 21 games.
Miller intercepted a pass in the neutral zone and passed the puck to Lafreniere. Artemi Panarin took a cross ice pass from Lafreniere, who had two assists, and beat Husso with a wrister that sailed over his glove. It was Panarin’s 12th goal of the season and after going three straight without a point, he now has 5 points in his last three games. The goal also gave Panarin a nine game, home point scoring streak (4 goals, 10 assists) to begin the season.
It took 23 seconds for the Rangers to lose the lead.
First, Seider tied the game with a power play goal. The Red Wings defenseman took the puck at the right point, skated into the slot and fired the puck past Shesterkin to tie the game at one.
23 seconds later, after the Red Wings had won a battle along the boards, the puck eventually came to Robby Fabbri who stunned Shesterkin and the Rangers by firing the puck into the net for a 2-1 lead.
Things are going so well for the Rangers these days, they even had a double minor penalty nullified.
About five and half minutes into the third period, Will Cuylie was called for a double minor for high sticking Lucas Raymond. Replays showed Raymond actually grabbed Cuylie’s stick and brought it up into his face, drawing blood. The officials got together and ruled no penalty.
Jonny Brodzinski took Kappo Kakko’s spot on the third line with Cuylie and Goodrow. Brodzinski was active with four shots on goal in 8:31 of ice time. Zibanejad, who had an assist, led the Rangers with five shots on goal.