Rangers end road trip with 3-2 win over Ducks in shootout
ANAHEIM, Calif. (AP) — The Rangers are getting into a bad habit of allowing goals in the final minute of regulation. Fortunately for them, it hasn’t cost them the last two times.
New York gave up a late goal for the third straight game — this time to Rickard Rakell with 25.3 seconds remaining — but was able to beat the Anaheim Ducks 3-2 in a shootout Thursday night.
It was the second shootout victory in three days for the Rangers.
Their struggles in the last minute began Sunday at Los Angeles when they were unable to clear the puck and Alec Martinez scored with 55 seconds left to hand New York a 4-3 loss. Two nights later in San Jose, the Sharks’ Tomas Hertl tied the game at 3 with less than two seconds remaining, but the Rangers were able to win in a shootout.
“It’s a little demoralizing to be giving up goals in the final minute of games, but we keep making progress,” rookie coach David Quinn said. “Over a season you have to find ways to manage to get points when you are not playing great or feeling great. We did that tonight.”
Mats Zuccarello and Mika Zibanejad scored in the shootout for the Rangers, who went 2-2 on a four-game road swing. Alexandar Georgiev made 22 saves and turned away both Ducks attempts in the tiebreaker.
Brett Howden and Kevin Hayes scored in regulation for the Rangers, who improved to 3-0 in shootouts.
“Those are huge points. You look at the end of the year and if you have 13 or 14 losses in an overtime shootout, those are points you are giving up,” said Marc Staal, who had an assist.
Jakob Silfverberg also scored for Anaheim, which is 0-5-2 in its last seven games. John Gibson made 28 saves. The Ducks are 1-2 in shootouts.
“That was the best game we’ve played defensively in a long time. Now it’s a matter of getting the offense clicking and spending more time in the offensive zone,” Silfverberg said. “We didn’t get the result we wanted tonight, but we got a point.”
The Rangers led most of the way but Rakell tied it with 25.3 seconds remaining in the third period after the Ducks pulled Gibson for an extra skater.
It marked the 13th time in franchise history that Anaheim has tied a game in the final 30 seconds.
Rakell, who has three goals this season, also had an assist. He has seven points in his last eight games (two goals, five assists).
New York got on the board first when Hayes scored a power-play goal less than two minutes into the second. Ryan Kesler blocked Howden’s shot but Hayes was able to corral the deflection and fire it past Gibson for his third of the season.
Anaheim tied it with its second power-play goal in its last six chances when Silfverberg scored on the rebound of a shot by Rakell that went off Georgiev’s blocker. It was Silfverberg’s fourth of the season, which tied him with Pontus Aberg for the team lead.
Less than two minutes later, Howden was wide open in front and scored his third goal off a pass from Jimmy Vesey. The goal was set up when Staal had the puck near the blue line and found Vesey near the left faceoff circle in the Ducks zone.
Ryan Getzlaf had two assists for Anaheim to extend his point streak to four games. He has two goals and five assists during that span.
NOTES: Anaheim right wing Patrick Eaves played for the first time this year following a health scare that cost him much of last season, when he played in only two games. He missed the first three games because of a lower-body injury and then the final 77 due to post-viral syndrome and a shoulder injury. He sat out the first 13 games this season as he was working his way back from shoulder surgery in early March. Eaves skated on the third line. ... The Rangers have a power-play goal in five of their last eight games.
Rangers: Return home to face Buffalo on Sunday.
Ducks: Host Columbus on Sunday.