Time was running out for a season of unexpected success for the Rangers. They were losing on goal and the excitement was rising in Madison Square Garden. The amazing jogging is over.
But throughout the season, including the previous two playoff games, the Rangers found their way back into the win and on Sunday they did so when it was most important, most dramatically.
Mika Zibanejad scored a goal with a kick in the wrist and equalized the score. Then, after 4 minutes and 45 seconds in overtime, Artem Panarin scored a goal with a wrist shot to win their 7th game of the first round of the playoff series, 4-3 and throw more than 18,000 fans in the garden into delirium.
It was a season in which the Rangers exceeded expectations and amazed the fans with their future potential. But one unknown was the playoff experience and the chance to win on the biggest stage.
They have it really now and it will be useful when the Rangers face Carolina Hurricane in the second round of the playoffs.
The Rangers, who suffered a deficit in one of three games, recorded their first series win since 2017, while the Penguins lost their first 7 games on the road, after the first six wins in franchise history.
“We’ve been a resilient band all year and that hasn’t changed in the series,” Chris Crader, Rangers winger, said in a televised interview after the game.
There was a lot of anticipation before the game whether Sidney Crosby would play. Four days have passed since Jacob Truba’s kicked him in the 5th game, with Troba making contact with Crosby’s face with his left elbow. Trump was not penalized for the play, and although at first it looked purposeful, a repetition from a certain angle indicated that he might have raised his elbow when playing a pack near Crosby’s feet.
Crosby, who missed 115 games due to a concussion in his 17-season career, left after the strike. Soon he left the game forever and did not play in Game 6, which Rangers won, 5-3, in Pittsburgh. On the eve of the 7th match on Sunday, it was reported that Crosby had not been diagnosed with a concussion and might have been left out of the squad for preventive reasons.
About half an hour before the game on Sunday, a murmur erupted in the arena when Crosby switched to ice skating. Crosby is considered a villain by Rangers fans, in part because he’s easy to fall on the ice for a penalty kick and they showed little sympathy for his illness, chanting his name in mockery.
But there is no doubt about his mastery and leadership as the winner of the Stanley Cup three, the two Most Valuable Player Awards of the regular season, the two MVP Awards of the Playoffs and the Cup of Many Goals. He was also the most dangerous player for the Penguins in the first four games of the series before the injury.
On Sunday, Crosby initially shook the ice sheet, put his teammates through penetrating passes, and forced Rangers goalkeeper Igor Shesterkin to put on a stretch glove and save a slap in the first period. He assisted Jake Gentzel in scoring in the second period to earn his 201st playoff point, tying Jaromir Jagger to the fifth-highest number in NHL history.
Crosby was also in the spotlight at the end of the first period of the clash near Rangers’ goal as he tried to get Shesterkin away from the pack. The Rangers did not appreciate it and Rangers defender Ryan Lindgren hit Crosby on the head, causing a slight agitation and resulting in appropriate penalties.
The Rangers scored in the middle of the first period when Zibanejad and Craider broke the iceberg to break through the two. Zibanejad, striking with a stripe on the left wing, passed along the ice to the crater, the left-hand shooter who stood from the right side from the point and made a single blow to the left shoulder of the Tristan Army, which hit the post. And entered the door, causing an accentuated celebration from the crater.
It was Craider’s fifth goal in a row and his third in the last two games, while Zibanejad’s seventh goal assist. It was an almost impossible blow for the troops to stop and one of the first he saw in the game in a month.
Mike Sullivan, the Penguins’ coach, made a calculated gamble when instructed to start an army game. The fine has not been played since April 14 due to injury, as it is suggested the leg bone was broken. Louis Dominguez, the third-tier goalkeeper, played in the first six games with the Pittsburgh shirt, entered the second overtime of the first game and was mostly solid. But the last goal Sullivan saw that Domingo swim was not a good game for the goalkeeper. Crader’s winning shot from point 1 to the 6th game with 1 minute 28 seconds left Struck Domingo on the pillowJumped to the door with his head and back.
The Army is considered a better goalkeeper, but there was no guarantee that his reflexes would be sharp. However, Sullivan was never afraid to take high-risk, high-reward moves.
After the time had elapsed in the first half, the Penguins equalized the score on Danton Heinen’s goal, which the Penguins were awarded only after a replay. The teams exchanged goals in the second period as well Guntzel scored in the Pittsburgh goal And K’Andre Miller equalized the score For rangers.
But later, Evan Rodriguez scored the goal Excellent backhand goal At the time of the separation, when the Penguins advanced 3-2 in the second half, and the tension reached a convincing conclusion.