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Montréal
Canadiens
39-33-10
New York
Rangers
38-33-11

game recap

Rangers raise the MSG roof with 6-2 rout of Habs

Wednesday, 08.06.2014 / 4:46 AM
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Rangers raise the MSG roof with 6-2 rout of Habs
Montréal Canadiens 2, New York Rangers 6

 

• PHOTO GALLERY

• RANGERS GAME CENTER

By Jim Cerny, newyorkrangers.com

The Rangers snapped a three-game winless skid by rallying for an electric and important 6-2 victory over the Montreal Canadiens at Madison Square Garden on Sunday night.

The two points earned with the victory pushed the Rangers back into sixth place in the Eastern Conference with 53 points, three better than the Canadiens, who are tied for eighth place.

“I think (we) played for one another, stuck up for one another, and found a way to score some goals,” said Rangers head coach John Tortorella.

Ryan Callahan paced the Rangers -- and equaled his career-high -- with four points. Callahan scored two goals and added two assists, notching four points just as he had on Dec. 17 against the Islanders.

Brandon Dubinsky also had a big night for the Rangers with two goals and one assist. Marian Gaborik scored his team-leading 29th goal and added a pair of assists. Chris Drury also notched a goal and an assist; and Vinny Prospal contributed two helpers.

“It was a heckuva’ game by both (Callahan and Dubinsky),” said Drury. “You could tell they had their legs, they were flying. They made some great plays both with, and without, the puck. They both had real big-time games for us.”

After a rare night of rest Saturday in St. Louis, Henrik Lundqvist was once again in goal for the Rangers on Sunday. He finished with 18 saves for his 21st victory of the season.

“It’s funny how things can turn around in one game,” said Lundqvist. “You see how important it is to get guys scoring. I think their game picks up when they score, most of the guys. They just feel good about themselves and get confidence.”

Trailing 2-0 after 20 minutes of play, the Rangers came out a different team in the second period. The Blueshirts fought and clawed -- literally and figuratively -- their way back into the game with a middle 20 minutes that had The Garden Faithful on its feet and roaring its approval.

The Rangers scored three times in the second period. They fired 15 shots on goal. They surrendered only two shots on goal. And, just as important, they played as physical a period as they have the entire season.

“You never know how a game is going to be played, and you never know what triggers (emotion),” said Tortorella. “It’s not mapped out. You never know when the emotion is going to show. But the important thing is how you respond. And I thought we responded the correct way.”

Callahan started the comeback by scoring just 57 seconds into the period. Prospal worked the puck to Gaborik behind the Canadiens’ net, and Gaborik twirled with it to the bottom of the left circle. Gaborik then zipped a perfect pass on to the stick of Callahan, who was tied up by defenseman Paul Mara in the paint, and Callahan redirected it past Jaroslav Halak for his 11th goal of the season.

On the ensuing shift Callahan drove hard to the net again, coming within inches of tying the game if not for a sharp pad stop by Halak. Energized by the goal, Callahan’s teammates followed his lead. The Rangers began to control the action with a vicious forecheck and a hard-hitting style that greatly disrupted Montreal’s flow.

The game, though, could have swung back into the Canadiens’ favor at 8:20 of the second. With Drury and Mara already serving coincidental minors, Michal Rozsival was penalized for high-sticking Tomas Plekanec, handing Montreal a 4-on-3 power play.

Montreal won the faceoff in the Rangers’ end, but Callahan intercepted the puck and pushed it past defensemen Andrei Markov and Marc-Andre Bergeron. Callahan then sprinted past the pair and was able to get off a strong shot that was denied by Halak. But Dubinsky was there at the side of the goalie to bat the puck out of midair and into the back of the cage for a shorthanded goal, tying the game 2-2 at 8:28.

The Rangers created a turnover at Montreal’s blueline at the 11-minute mark of the second period and it led directly to the go-ahead goal. Gaborik made the steal, chipped a pass to Prospal, and the veteran center made a great move around a diving Jaroslav Spacek before finding Dubinsky alone in the low slot. Dubinsky made no mistake, whipping the puck into the net for his second goal of the game and 10th of the season at 11:04 putting the Rangers up 3-2.

“Vinny made a spectacular pass to me all alone on the back door,” said Dubinsky. “It was a nice gift.”

With the MSG crowd raising the roof with its collective voice already, the Rangers’ fourth line added to the good vibes moments after Dubinsky’s goal with a physical shift of its own. Brian Boyle delivered a big hit, and Aaron Voros then grappled with Montreal’s Travis Moen.

As the scrum widened, Sean Avery paired off with Josh Gorges. When the fight was over Avery threw his arms in the air urging the already-raucous Garden crowd to get even louder.

The rough stuff picked up again at the 15:02 mark of the second. Enver Lisin was crushed by Plekanec, who was penalized for interference. But Lisin objected to the hit, and tried to get back at Plekanec, setting off a wild melee.

The Main Event was a shocker. Rangers’ defenseman Wade Redden, who is not known for his pugilistic skills, dropped the gloves with the much bigger Benoit Pouliot. Though he may not have won the fight, Redden received a standing ovation from both the fans and his teammates.

“I’m glad he stood in there,” Tortorella said of Redden. “That’s part of him trying to get involved with our team here. I know the boys were very happy for him.”

In total, 50 penalty minutes were doled out in the second period alone. More important, the Rangers scored the only three goals of the middle stanza, and carried a one-goal advantage into the third period.

The Rangers doubled their lead 4:56 into the final period of play as Callahan potted his second goal of the game. Callahan was credited with a power-play goal when his deflection just trickled over the goal line, though it took a video review to overrule the on ice call by the referees that no goal had been scored.

Video review also upheld Brian Gionta’s goal which gave Montreal a 2-0 lead with 5:10 to go in the first period. Gionta swatted a puck out of the air and over Lundqvist’s shoulder, credited with his 13th goal of the season. The referees allowed the goal, and video review confirmed that the puck was not struck with a high stick.

Mike Cammalleri had scored his 22nd goal just 3:30 into the game for Montreal to give the Canadiens an early 1-0 lead against a Rangers’ team that had scored only one goal in its previous three games.

The ensuing 2-0 deficit could have caused the Rangers to panic. Instead they chose to fight their way back into the game, and eventually win it going away.

“We had some big goals and big contributions from a lot of guys tonight,” said Dubinsky. “These are two big points.”

The Rangers will look to build upon Sunday’s rousing victory when they host the Tampa Bay Lightning on Tuesday night at MSG. Tickets for that game are available.

scoring summary
1st Period
03:30
MTL
Mike Cammalleri (22) ASST: Tomas Plekanec (37), Hal Gill (2)
1 - 0 MTL
14:50
MTL
PPG - Brian Gionta (13) ASST: Marc-Andre Bergeron (15), Andrei Markov (11)
2 - 0 MTL
2nd Period
00:57
NYR
Ryan Callahan (11) ASST: Marian Gaborik (27), Vinny Prospal (25)
2 - 1 MTL
08:28
NYR
SHG - Brandon Dubinsky (9) ASST: Ryan Callahan (13)
2 - 2 Tie
11:04
NYR
Brandon Dubinsky (10) ASST: Vinny Prospal (26), Marian Gaborik (28)
3 - 2 NYR
3rd Period
04:56
NYR
PPG - Ryan Callahan (12) ASST: Chris Drury (11), Michael Del Zotto (17)
4 - 2 NYR
12:17
NYR
Marian Gaborik (29) ASST: Brandon Dubinsky (16), Marc Staal (12)
5 - 2 NYR
15:49
NYR
Chris Drury (7) ASST: Ryan Callahan (14)
6 - 2 NYR
penalty summary
1st Period
00:11
NYR
Sean Avery  Boarding against  Jaroslav Spacek
10:37
MTL
Paul Mara  Holding against  Vinny Prospal
14:38
NYR
Sean Avery  Interference against  Travis Moen
18:49
MTL
Matt D'Agostini  Interference against  Brandon Dubinsky
2nd Period
07:54
NYR
Chris Drury  Hi-sticking against  Paul Mara
07:54
MTL
Paul Mara  Holding the stick against  Chris Drury
08:20
NYR
Michal Rozsival  Hi-sticking against  Tomas Plekanec
11:48
MTL
Travis Moen  Roughing against  Aaron Voros
11:48
NYR
Aaron Voros  Roughing against  Travis Moen
11:48
MTL
Josh Gorges  Fighting (maj) against  Sean Avery
11:48
NYR
Sean Avery  Fighting (maj) against  Josh Gorges
12:33
MTL
Benoit Pouliot  Boarding against  Erik Christensen
15:02
NYR
Brian Boyle  Misconduct (10 min)
15:02
NYR
Enver Lisin  Roughing against  Tomas Plekanec
15:02
MTL
Maxim Lapierre  Roughing against  Enver Lisin
15:02
MTL
Tomas Plekanec  Interference against  Enver Lisin
15:02
MTL
Benoit Pouliot  Fighting (maj) against  Wade Redden
15:02
NYR
Wade Redden  Fighting (maj) against  Benoit Pouliot
17:44
MTL
Matt D'Agostini  Too many men/ice - bench
3rd Period
02:33
NYR
Michal Rozsival  Tripping against  Glen Metropolit
04:30
MTL
Benoit Pouliot  Hooking against  Brandon Dubinsky
06:13
MTL
Roman Hamrlik  Slashing against  Enver Lisin
06:13
NYR
Enver Lisin  Slashing against  Roman Hamrlik
16:52
NYR
Artem Anisimov  Tripping against  Jaroslav Spacek
goalie stats
Jaroslav Halak
Jaroslav Halak
12-7-1
SA: 34TOI: 59:56
Saves: 28EV: 20 - 24
PIM: 0PP: 6 - 7
SV%: .824SH: 2 - 3
Henrik Lundqvist
SA: 20TOI: 60:00
Saves: 18EV: 10 - 11
PIM: 0PP: 8 - 9
SV%: .900SH: 0 - 0
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