Rangers eliminate Penguins by 2-1
The New York Rangers advanced to the last eight of the NHL Stanley Cup playoffs with a 2-1 win over Pittsburgh on Friday, with Carl Hagelin’s overtime goal and spectacular goaltending by Henrik Lundqvist steering the hosts to a victory which completed a 4-1 series win.
In the day’s other games, Ottawa staved off elimination again by winning at Montreal, and Minnesota moved within one win of a series victory by defeating St. Louis.
New York’s Hagelin netted the overtime winner when he skated out from behind the net and put a wrist shot on the short side behind Penguins goaltender Marc-Andre Fleury.
The Rangers, who got all four wins in the series by the same 2-1 score, will play the winner of the Washington-New York Islanders series, which the Capitals lead 3-2.
Lundqvist made 37 saves, including a memorable stop on Brandon Sutter in an overtime session that was wide open, a bit sloppy, but very entertaining.
New York’s problematic power play opened the scoring. Dan Boyle’s weak shot from the point fooled Fleury, who knocked it down — directly to Derek Stepan in front of him. Stepan put home a tap-in just 3:23 in. Pittsburgh’s Nick Spaling tied it in the second period.
Ottawa won 5-1 at Montreal to reduce the series deficit to 3-2, having trailed 3-0.
Senators goalie Craig Anderson made 45 saves while Bobby Ryan, Patrick Wiercioch, Erik Karlsson, Erik Condra and Mike Hoffman scored for Ottawa. The Senators are trying to become the fifth team in NHL history to win a series after trailing 3-0.
Tom Gilbert had the lone goal for Montreal, and Carey Price stopped 20 shots.
Montreal’s struggling power play went 0 for 3 to drop to 1 for 19 in the series.
Ottawa, which was 2 for 4 with the extra man, will host Game 6 on Sunday.
Minnesota also claimed an impressive road win, beating St. Louis 4-1 to go up 3-2 in the series.
Wild goalie Devan Dubnyk, who gave up six goals in two periods in Game 4, put in a much improved performance, with 36 saves, including twice robbing Alexander Steen from close range in the second period.
The Wild scored four straight goals after Vladimir Tarasenko gave St. Louis the early edge with his playoff-leading sixth goal.
Nino Niederreiter scored the goahead goal in the second period, and Marco Scandella, Mikko Koivo and Charlie Coyle also scored for Minnesota, which hosts Game 6 on Sunday.
The Central Division champion Blues will be trying to avoid their third straight first-round elimination and bring the series back home for Game 7 on Wednesday.
New York Rangers’ Dan Girardi #5, Ryan McDonagh, middle, and Jesper Fast #19 celebrate with New York Rangers’ Carl Hagelin, bottom middle, after Game 5 against the Pittsburgh Penguins in the first round of the NHL hockey Stanley Cup playoffs on Friday, April 24.