(SportsNetwork.com) – The New York Rangers played arguably their best period
of hockey last time out.
It was the other 40 minutes that the club would like to work on.
The Rangers return to the ice five days after an improbable comeback to host
the Winnipeg Jets on Saturday night at Madison Square Garden.
New York found itself down 3-0 going into the third period of Monday’s opener
of a four-game homestand against the Minnesota Wild, and still down 4-2 with
14:25 left to play.
However, Derick Brassard, Anthony Duclair and Mats Zuccarello scored three
straight markers to cap a five-goal period and lift the Rangers to a 5-4
decision and their fourth victory in five games.
Duclair scored the tying goal with 3:48 to play, his first career NHL goal,
and Zuccarello tallied the winner 37 seconds later.
Kevin Klein and Rich Nash also scored and Zuccarello and Brassard added two
assists. Henrik Lundqvist made 26 saves.
“We’ve got to work on some things here still and we have the next few days off
to get things straightened out,” said Zuccarello. “But our team effort in the
third was unbelievable.”
New York finished the game minus defenseman John Moore and center Chris
Kreider, who both picked up match penalties. Moore’s boarding of Jonas Brodin
resulted in a five-game suspension for the defenseman.
The Jets eye a third victory in four games as they suffered a 2-1 shootout
loss to the New Jersey Devils on Thursday.
Blake Wheeler scored in the first period and Ondrej Pavelec was outstanding
with 27 saves, but didn’t get enough offensive support.
Pavelec made a glove save on Jaromir Jagr in the waning seconds to force
overtime, then made a left pad save on the veteran’s backhand try in the extra
“We played a pretty solid road game,” Jets head coach Paul Maurice said.
The Jets had forward Evander Kane in the lineup for the first time since he
suffered a knee injury in the first period of the club’s season opener. That
ailment sidelined him for eight games.
The Rangers have won six of their last nine versus the Jets franchise, but
lost their lone home meeting with Winnipeg last season.