Rangers back in se­ries with Sens

The Hamilton Spectator - - SPORTS - DENIS P. GORMAN

NEW YORK — Hen­rik Lundqvist made 26 saves to lead the New York Rangers to a 4-1 win over the Ottawa Sen­a­tors on Tues­day night in Game 3 of their East­ern Con­fer­ence semi­fi­nal.

Mats Zuc­carello, Michael Grab­ner, Rick Nash and Os­car Lind­berg scored for the Rangers who still trail the best-of-seven se­ries 2-1, with Game 4 Thurs­day still in New York.

Jean-Gabriel Pageau replied for Ottawa, while Craig An­der­son stopped 26 shots.

For a team that col­lec­tively spoke Mon­day about its un­der­stand­ing that the Rangers would be des­per­ate to sal­vage their sea­son, the Sen­a­tors ap­peared over­whelmed by the pres­sure New York opened the game with. When the first pe­riod ended, Ottawa trailed 2-0, had been out­shot 15-5 and out-at­tempted 26-12. The Sen­a­tors were out­shot 30-27 and out at­tempted 56-54 by the end of the game.

New York took a 1-0 lead on Zuc­carello’s fourth goal of the play­offs just 5:31 into the game. The play was made by for­mer Sen­a­tor Mika Zibane­jad, who car­ried the puck around the net be­fore find­ing Zuc­carello driv­ing down the slot for a point-blank scor­ing op­por­tu­nity.

An­der­son and Ben Harpur’s mis­com­mu­ni­ca­tion set up New York’s sec­ond goal as both the Ottawa goal­tender and the rookie de­fence­man at­tempted to play a Zuc­carello dump-in be­hind the net. An­der­son came half­way out of his net while Harpur couldn’t con­trol the puck. Grab­ner jumped on the loose puck and tucked it into the net to give the Rangers a 2-0 lead with 6:36 left in the pe­riod.

Essen­tially, the out­come of the game was de­cided 12:21 into the sec­ond when Nash fired his third of the play­offs through An­der­son’s five­hole. Lind­berg pushed the lead to 4-0 with his first ca­reer play­off goal with 1:43 left in the sec­ond, 32 sec­onds be­fore Pageau scored to spoil Lundqvist’s shutout bid.

The Rangers skated a nearly iden­ti­cal lineup from Game 2 with only Tan­ner Glass re­plac­ing Pavel Buch­nevich on the fourth line.

FRANK FRANKLIN II, THE AS­SO­CI­ATED PRESS

Rangers play­ers cel­e­brate Michael Grab­ner’s sec­ond-pe­riod goal that gave them a 2-0 lead Tues­day night in New York.

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