A former New York Ranger put his former teammates in a desperate position on Tuesday night at Madison Square Garden. A current Ranger put the team on his back to get them out of it, and earn them a win at home for the first time November 6.
Rick Nash scored the tying goal in the opening minute, and assisted on Jimmy Vesey’s eventual game-winner, and the Rangers downed the Carolina Hurricanes 3-2 on Tuesday night.
Having dropped four of their past six games overall, the Rangers (16-7-1) didn’t get off to an ideal start, allowing former comrade Viktor Stalberg to score two goals that put Carolina ahead 2-0. They were Stalberg’s fifth and sixth goals of the season, after he put in nine as a member of the Rangers last season. Carolina, which topped the Rangers 3-2 in their home opener in Raleigh last month, played stingy defense with the Rangers, allowing only 12 shots through two periods.
However, one of those shots came through, as Nick Holden scored his third goal of the season, the unassisted tally cutting the lead in half. Nash got his dominant period started right from the get-go, as he outskated Carolina defenders in opening minute to enter double digits in goals, his 10th of the season getting past Cam Ward and knotting things up at two apiece. Nash continued to lead the charge, creating opportunities and keeping pucks in the Hurricanes’ zone.
The Rangers’ tenacity eventual paid off, as Carolina’s Ron Hainsey earned himself a
pair of two minute penalties, first for hooking Ryan McDonagh and then an unsportsmanlike conduct charge for arguing the call. The Rangers took advantage on the first power play, as Vesey scored his first goal since November 12, providing the winning tally. Henrik Lundqvist held off a wild Hurricane charge afterwards, and the Rangers stopped a four game winless streak at Madison Square Garden.
The Hurricanes (9-9-4) will touchdown at MSG again on Saturday afternoon.
Prior to that, the Rangers will take a quick trip to Buffalo to take on the Sabres (7:00, MSG).
Geoff Magliocchetti is on Twitter @GeoffMags5490