Against a team named after a local urban legend, the New York Rangers saw what could very well be a legend of their own rise to the occasion once more.
Antti Raanta posted his second consecutive shutout, making 19 saves as the Rangers crushed the New Jersey Devils 5-0 on Sunday night at Madison Square Garden.
Raanta didn’t have much to do, as the Rangers‘ defense was stingy all night, but he still managed to keep his hot streak alive. Dating back to Thursday’s game against Winnipeg, the first of his three, and counting, consecutive starts, Raanta has not allowed a goal for over 150 minutes of game time.
Of course, Raanta’s job was made all the easier with a little help from his friends, as five different Rangers partook in the blowout to secure victory. After a New Jersey first period goal from former Ranger PA Parenteau was erased via review, the Rangers got to work, ending the opening frame on a winning note as Chris Kreider, who saw his four game points streak snapped on Friday in Chicago, started a new one as he put in his eighth goal of the season for a 1-0 lead. The Devils kept pace for a majority of the second period, but the Rangers took complete control late in the frame. In a period where they held the Devils to just three shots, it was actually on a Devils power play where they took over, as JT Miller notched a shorthanded goal. More celebration permeated through Madison Square Garden in the final minute of the period, as Brady Skjei scored his first career NHL goal, sending MSG into hysterics and a 3-0 lead going into the third.
Kreider would against contribute to the scoring sheet in the last period, assisting on Brandon Pirri’s first goal since November 15 for the 4-0 lead. Pirri would later return the favor and help cap off the scoring by assisting on Jimmy Vesey’s 10th goal of the year, concluding the 5-0 score.
The Devils (12-10-6) will have a chance for revenge against the Rangers (20-9-1) next Sunday night, a rematch at MSG.
Following this win, the Rangers will put their fledgling winning streak on the line against the Chicago Blackhawks (7:00, MSG+/NBCSN)
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