The New York Rangers have defeated the Washington Capitals 3-2 at Madison Square Garden to tie up the series at one game a piece going back to Washington on Monday night. The Rangers stepped up their physicallity in this game, getting 30 hits.
The Rangers got on the board just 38 seconds in, which is exactly what they needed after the heart-breaking loss on Thursday. Chris Kreider scored on a wide open net with Braden Holtby out of position and assisted by Jesper Fast and Derek Stepan. With 4:20 remaining and the Rangers on the power play, the Rangers ruined the Capitals' perfect penalty kill this postseason thanks to a Dan Boyle shot from the point and a great screen by Rick Nash.
That would be all the scoring until six minutes left in the second period when Henrik Lundqvist gave up a big rebound that was taken advantage of by Evgeny Kuznetsov assisted by Jason Chimera.
In the third period, after Derick Brassard was called for interference on Alex Ovechkin 3:57 into the period. When Brassard was leaving the box, he got in front of the net and got a pass by Marty St. Louis and went right past two Caps defenders' sticks to Derick Brassard, who deposited it in the #5 hole past Holtby to again put the Rangers up by two goals. Nash also assisted on the goal.
At the 10:29 into the third period, Ovechkin split the Rangers defense. As he was falling down, he lifted the puck over Lundqvist’s stick-side shoulder and into the net in a beautiful play to make it a one-goal game once again, assisted by Joel Ward and Brooks Orpik. That is as close as the Caps would get, however, but they would make a furious push in the dying seconds of the third period, trying to repeat Thursday night’s feat.
All afternoon long, Lundqvist stood tall, stopping the Caps' push to tie the game up on the doorstep and saving the Rangers on multiple occasions. Holtby again played great between the pipes for the Caps, making 32 saves. Lundqvist finished with 30 saves. This series goes back to Washington on Monday night.
After the game, the Rangers gave the Broadway hat to Derick Brassard and added the fifth piece to the puzzle, tweeting, “the fifth piece added to the #nyr puzzle!! #changetheending.” They also tweeted, “brass gets the #nyr broadway hat!!!”