From the jaws of defeat, the New York Rangers pulled off one of the most improbable comebacks of the NHL season.
K’Andre Miller scored the game-tying goal with .2 seconds remaining in the game to send the contest to overtime, and Adam Fox sent the MSG crowd into a frenzy with his game-winning goal to give the Rangers a 2-1 win over the Stars.
“We’re never going to quit. It was a one-goal game and we battled hard. Fortunately for us, we got lucky a few times in the blue line. You never quit, you keep battling hard and fortunately for us we found some traffic and found a way to get that goal.” Rangers head coach Gerard Gallant said after the win.
The theatrics of the final seconds highlighted a playoff atmosphere inside Madison Square Garden, but also made up for a slow-moving offensive game from both Dallas and New York.
A sloppy first period saw the Rangers charged with 10 giveaways with most coming in the neutral zone. While Dallas was unable to take advantage of the extra puck time, New York’s injury problems got even worse. The Rangers were battered with injuries throughout the loss. Sammy Blais collided with Julien Gauthier and both left the ice at the end of the first period with only Blais returning. Jimmy Vesey also was seen being taken care of to the side after he was hit with a shot.
Even though all the injuries though, the Rangers found a way to stay competitive. Even when all seemed lost.
Tyler Seguin scored on the powerplay for Dallas to give the Stars a 1-0 advantage late in the second period and spoiled what were two excellent performances from each netminder.
Igor Shesterkin tallied 24 saves on 25 shots and kept New York in the contest late in the third. Dallas’ goaltender, Jake Oettinger, was just as dominant stopping the first 29 shots he faced in Thursday’s contest.
His last two attempts though turned the tide.
With an empty net behind him, and a scrum for the loose puck in front, Miller found the necessary room needed to pull off his fifth goal of the season and tied the game up in the final half-seconds.
“I knew time was winding down. I just tried to get pucks on the net and keep the puck in their zone…The boys did a great job screening Oettinger and getting the puck back and getting us another chance.” Miler touted after the game.
From there, the Rangers and Stars played the extra period and a minute and a half in, the puck found Adam Fox and he found the back of the net for the Rangers’ second straight win and completed one of the wildest finishes in Ranger history.
“It wasn’t our prettiest. I thought we had too many turnovers, but we talk about playing a full 60. We’ll take the two points and obviously a big win for us.” Fox said.
The win moves the Rangers into a tie with the New Jersey Devils for second place in the Metro division with a 24-12-7 record. They’ll be back in front of the home Garden crowd Sunday afternoon when they take on Montreal.
- The Rangers were without Chris Kreider for the first time this season due to an upper-body injury the 31-year-old suffered in New York’s 4-3 shootout win over Minnesota on Tuesday. Gallant said the team’s leading goal-scorer shouldn’t be out long and is day-to-day.
- Miller’s goal in the final half-seconds tied for the latest game-tying goal in franchise history according to the Rangers Stats & Info Twitter account.
- Fox’s overtime goal was the second one of his career and extended the Rangers’ point streak to seven straight games.
- New York went 0-4 on the powerplay Thursday night with Lafreniere taking Kreider’s place on the man advantage. Dallas scored on their only man-advantage opportunity which was the lone score for the majority of the contest.